Welcome to December! As writers, many of us have been hitting that keyboard hard for the past 11 months, and we are either brain dead and need a break from writing, or completely motivated and want to finish the year off strongly. No matter which writing camp you may fall into, there are plenty of ways that you can get yourself prepare for the New Year, as a writer, author, and/or blogger. 

I recently asked my Facebook audience* these questions: 

  • How are you getting yourself in tip-top writing mode for the New Year? 
  • What is on your must-finish-up-so-you-can-start-afresh list? 
  • What tips/strategies/ideas would you include on a list about getting ready for writing in the New Year?

And WOWZA – my audience had a lot to say!

50 Things Writers Can Do To Prepare For the New Year

  1. Buy a new notebook.
  2. Review what you have written this year.
  3. Finish any unfinished blog pieces, articles, etc., which speak to you.
  4. Reflect on why pieces were left unfinished.
  5. Purge those you don’t want to finish. (Get them out of your daily eyesight.)
  6. Buy new journals for various projects to keep your ideas/writings organized.
  7. Set up a writing environment to meditate and journal.
  8. Go fallow in December, enjoying food and family, then emerge on “writing side” in January.
  9. Update your website.
  10. Get a fresh haircut.
  11. Add a few new pieces to spruce up your wardrobe and make it current.
  12. Get ready for interviews.
  13. Prepare for author events.
  14. Update or create your media kit so that you will have promotional materials ready for book promotions.
  15. Take care of any nagging health issues — emotional, spiritual or physical.
  16. Organize your files.
  17. Update your contact list.
  18. Update your software.
  19. Get your receipts and write-off lists together and have them ready for tax season.
  20. Start planning which events and trade-shows you want to go to next year.
  21. Get a travel budget together.
  22. Research and note materials needed for applications. Get everything lined up now so you can find out all of the pertinent information.
  23. Buy a sketchbook to map ideas or expand a writing in graphical format.
  24. Buy new pens, pencils and erasers.
  25. Check your keyboard – do you love it? If not, invest in a really great keyboard.
  26. Note your most productive and creative writing times. Block them off and scheduled into your calendar.
  27. Get plenty of rest.
  28. Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate!
  29. Have a passion-based purpose for writing. (It will keep you motivated during dry spells and focused on your mission, rather than just your feelings.)
  30. Make a mini vision board that represents your commitment to writing for 2014. (Look at it when you need a reminder.)
  31. Create a lovely environment to write in, complete with a rad new desk and decorations which inspire creativity.
  32. Prepare a music ‘playlist’. If you can write to different types of music based on the tone of the writing piece, try these music playlist categories: Pump Me Up, Romantic Tunes, I am the Bomb-Diggety, etc.
  33. Test out new productivity approaches to see if they might be a good fit for you.
  34. Complete all your strategic planning for next year in terms of health, money, and marketing.
  35. Go hard all the way through 2013! (And then 2014 will rock out by osmosis.)
  36. Put away the fear you have around writing.
  37. Consider partnering with a writing coach to help you meet your goals.
  38. Check the copywriting on your website and make sure that it is current.
  39. Add tags to entries in your digital journal.
  40. Make a backup of your digital writing entries.
  41. Add photos to any digital journal entries.
  42. Print digital entries and make a notebook of your writings for 2013.
  43. Gather your favorite candle scents and oils for the new year. (Your writing brain loves scent stimulation.)
  44. Remove any blog posts that are outdated (events, interview, etc.)
  45. Check the links in your blog posts to ensure they are still working.
  46. Create guest blogger guidelines.
  47. Organize your computer’s desktop.
  48. Update your Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and LinkedIn files.
  49. Stock up on your favorite coffees and teas.
  50. Set writing goals for 2014.

Do you have anything to add to our growing list? If so, leave a comment, because I’d love to hear from you.

Please join me on Facebook, so you can be part of these discussions as they happen! 

*A HUGE thank you to the following people who contributed to this post: Tai Goodwin-Kastins, Gail Roddy, Keily Denny, Anastacia Brice, Jasmine Cianflone, Gail Allen, Larissa Parks, Jennie Mustafa-Julock, Tim McDonald, Michael Hernandez, and Rachel Kay Albers.