‘Taking stock’ advice is practically available on almost any writing site or blog page. Usually, it is something that you have read before, but that is not necessarily the problem. Reminding yourself of what you have been doing for those three hundred and something days is certainly a necessity in itself.
The problem can be that all that advice can often be in some vague, general terms, like telling you that the weather in December is usually very cloudy. And you don’t need somebody to tell you to take stock of what you’ve earned from your writing this year, you got your bank account for that.
Unless you are currently writing a novel (or two), or are involved in some long-term project, pre-holiday and holiday season is usually quiet and it does allow most of the writers time to really take a thorough look at what they have really achieved, or what they didn’t.
Certainly, all that feedback you got from clients, readers, reviews is the first thing you will get to. And like all those pro and con sheets you used to make in high school about which college you should apply to (or not), so can the feedback you get on your writing be sorted. It does give you a nice, imaginary balancing scale about how your writing was viewed.
Fine, but what about your own, personal rating? Again, nothing new, but taking a cue from literary, music, movie critics might be quite helpful - make a list of how you rate your writing. From top to bottom, or another way around, whichever way you prefer it. Even better, separate the list into the best and the worst.
You can then compare your list(s) with the feedback you received, and see where you agree with it and where it doesn’t. The real answers will most of the times be in matching opinions. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t stick to your opinion where you strongly agree or disagree with somebody else.
But what it definitely does is give you a perspective, not only about how you have done in the past period, but what you need to change or what you certainly need to stick to. Some more vague, general advice, guess.
Oh, and don’t forget to make your own lists of best books, movies, music. I certainly got The War on Drugs, Aldous Harding and The National on my music list…
To learn more about me, please check my LinkedIn page at www.linkedin.com/profile/preview?locale=en_US&trk=prof-0-sb-preview-primary-button.