Well, we made it to December, everyone! Alleluia, 2020 is almost over! Normally, I’m trying to live in the moment, with all of the holiday cheer, but secretly looking ahead and planning for an amazing new year. But this year, there is nothing secret about my eagerness to ring in 2021. How is 2020 not over yet?
Each new year brings us all a fresh start, a clean slate, a new beginning. It’s an opportunity to dream big and set lofty goals. As writers there’s always the standard, “I want to sign with an agent,” or “I want to sell a manuscript.” But I’m going to challenge you to set a different goal for 2021. One that could certainly help you achieve the others just mentioned, but focuses more on your growth as a writer. I challenge you…to learn to write a new genre.
Learning to write a new genre will certainly push you outside of your comfort zone which is exactly how you are going to grow as a writer. A couple of years ago I found myself stuck in a bit of a picture book rut and decided to take a class on writing chapter books. Learning the ins and outs of this new genre was exciting and fresh. It gave my writing new life and perspective. It was amazing!
So, as much as we’ve all been working on surviving 2020, let’s take back control and push ourselves a little in the coming year. Do you only write fiction? Why not try a new nonfiction manuscript? Are you a picture book writer like myself? Consider learning to write longer works like chapter books or even middle grade. Contemporary writing your safe zone? Perhaps a little fantasy might add new excitement to your manuscripts.
Listen to the wise words on the Luna bar wrapper. Make 2021 your year to be a little uncomfortable with your writing and see how far it takes you.
***This post was originally published on December 14, 2018 and title, Challenge Accepted. It has been updated to reflect current events.
Related Post: Writing Out of the Comfort Zone by Alison Potoma