The Trouble with Small Goals

Tumor roulette: And now we are talking about surgery for Neal. It seems to be the best way for him to keep the use of his eye. However, factors about whether we’ll do surgery or not include how well he can take surgery at his age.

So, guys, I’ll stop telling you anything until something definite actually happens. Viva the clarity of the medical establishment!


Very interesting post from Ferrett Steinmetz today on how small goals can make you complacent.


I think it is conceptually good to celebrate small goals, especially if they help you with motivation. I have been where Ferrett is. If you reach a certain point in your pursuit, you can be complacent in having gotten that far.

Usually, though, as I’m an overachiever who tends to try to one up myself, this complacency lasts a few minutes. Still, sometimes meeting the small goal will make me feel that I can relax, or that I’m where I want to be.

So, this year is a real change of focus. You’ll notice that this is the first year that I haven’t put a finite goal, like write book X, or publish Y, or even send out X submissions.

This is the first year that I accept writing as the thing that won’t go away. It’s not a hobby that I can put aside when I need a break. It becomes something I dedicate a certain amount of time to, vaguely akin to a career.

Not all my efforts will see the light of day. The goal isn’t to dazzle you with my productivity. The goal is to make writing and the improvement of my writing a constant factor in my life.

I have this overarching large goal. I don’t know what the end result of this will be, but it will be interesting to find out. That doesn’t mean I can’t celebrate small successes. However, my eye must always be on the next step.

It’s a lifestyle now.

But you don’t want this preachiness. No, what you want is a review. Of Swill. Coming right up.


Author: Catherine Schaff-Stump

Catherine Schaff-Stump writes fiction for children and young adults. Her most recent book, The Vessel of Ra, is the first book in the Klaereon Scroll series. She is currently working on its sequel, as well as penning the middle grade adventures of Abigail Rath, monster hunter.

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