Ah, the new year. It’s like a blank canvas waiting for you to fill with your hopes and dreams. In the new year, anything is possible. We start fitness programs. We eat healthy. We set goals.

I want you to set aside some of your new-year-induced optimism to invest in you and your career. I want to you to shed the guilt and overwhelm in 2018 by finally (finally!!) meeting your writing and publication goals. This year is the year you write and publish more.

But why now? Why invest energy in figuring out how to write more in the new year?

Here are my three best reasons to make THIS year the year you write and publish more:

  1. So many academic women tell me that their biggest obstacle to writing more is that they don’t know how to start. The new year is the prime time to figure out how to start. That fresh roll over sets us up perfectly for instilling new practices, exploring new ways of doing what we’ve long wanted to accomplish. In the new year doing better with writing seems possible (and when you learn how write more, it actually is possible).
  2. If you didn’t make time to write in 2017, the only way you’ll make time to write in 2018 is by changing something. Here’s some tough love: You will never have more time magically; the time we get is what we get. Writing more is all about prioritizing writing, and there are proven strategies and techniques that can help you learn to do this. If last year you let guilt and overwhelm define your writing practice, this year commit to learning how to prioritize writing. Commit to making a change. Taking action is key. Don’t let guilt and overwhelm win. This is your year.
  3. Before the semester pushes “urgent” tasks in front of “important” tasks, make a plan that you can stick to. You may be familiar with the Eisenhower decision matrix, which is a simple grid to categorize your tasks as urgent/not urgent and important/not important. You’ll quickly see that you spend too much time responding to urgent but not always important tasks, while the extremely important (but not always urgent) task of writing gets pushed to the bottom.

This year, learn how to drive your semester–don’t let your semester drive you. Learn how to do the important tasks first, even if you think it is impossible to put off the urgent/not important tasks.

How can you learn to make the changes you need to make in 2018 to write and publish more? Join my New Year’s Writing Challenge! The challenge will run from January 8-12 on my Facebook page, with daily videos themed to get your writing practice off to a great start in the new year. Sign up here to get notifications when I go live, and all the handouts that go with the challenge:

Now let’s take a minute to think about how your writing will be in 2018 if you decide not to take action.

  1. Data gets old. Your ideas need to get out in the world as soon as possible. But if guilt and overwhelm define your writing practice, this will never happen, and all that hard work is lost. The world needs you and your voice. Your field needs you and your voice. You can’t let 2018 pass by the same way 2017 passed, with partially-done pubs sitting around getting old. The time to act is now.
  2. The review process takes a looong time. The longer you wait to really figure out how to implement a solid, sustainable, writing practice, the longer it will take to see the fruits of your labor in actual, real, published, work that can go on your CV. If you are scared of reviews, you are not alone. But think of it this way: You are rejecting your own article by not submitting it. It’s time to open up, be vulnerable, and get feedback. We are waiting for you in the I Should Be Writing! FB community to help you craft snarky responses to Reviewer #2’s ridiculous comments. (We know you’ll never send those responses, but it’s fun to think about!) Let us support you and help you work through your fear. Believe me, we’ve all been there!
  3. The peace of mind you get from meeting your publication goals is priceless. Each day you aren’t moving toward your publication goals is a day you are delaying that peace and satisfaction. On the market? Applying for tenure? Wanting to make a move? All those super-important career milestones will be easier with your pubs out in the world. Don’t wait to take action on finding time to write.

Sign up for the New Year’s Writing Challenge and let’s make 2018 your year to write and publish more!

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