SWAGr for May 2021

It’s that time again: make your writing commitments for the month with the Serious Writers’ Accountability Group

Welcome to the Serious Writers’ Accountability Group!

Post your goals for this month and let us know how you got on with last month’s goals.

I’m pretty sure I know what ONE of your goals might be this month 🙂

Serious Writers' Accountability Group

Leave a comment below telling us how you got on last month, and what you plan to do next month, then check back in on the first of each month, to see how everyone’s doing.

(It doesn’t have to be fiction. Feel free to use this group to push you in whatever creative direction you need.)

Did you live up to your commitment from last month? Don’t remember what you promised to do? Check out the comments from last month.

And don’t forget to celebrate with/encourage your fellow SWAGr-ers on their progress!

Download your SWAGr Tracking Sheet now, to keep track of your commitments this month


Examples of Goals Set By SWAGr-ers in previous months

  • Finish first draft of story and write 3 articles for my school paper. – Courtney
  • Write on seven days this month – Clare
  • Extend my reading and to read with a ‘writers eye’- Wendy
  • write 10,000 words – Mary Lou

 So, what will you accomplish this month? Leave your comment below (use the drop-down option to subscribe to the comments and receive lovely, encouraging notifications from fellow StADa SWAGr-ers!)

(Next check-in, 1st of the month. Tell your friends!)

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26 thoughts on “SWAGr for May 2021”

  1. I’m not sure if this is the right spot to be reflecting on StoryADAy May but I really loved it because it made hold fast to my promise of writing everyday. I only missed one day. And the prompts were quite original, coming from so many different writers with different styles- very inspiring. I realized part way through that if I could write everyday like that I better pull out my dusty unfinished story that deserves to be finished. So now my June goal is to try the prompts that I left behind and keep writing to finish my Laura story. Thanks so much! I needed this.

    @Wendy cool format on the updates, I liked the little section with the April recap.
    Best of luck to everyone for what’s left of May.

  3. I just found ALL this!!!! Through the podcast. Just found the podcast too!
    I am SO late to STADA MAY!!

    I’m getting back to the writing life after a ten year gap (after ten years of being a serial publisher of nonfiction = journalist) and just settling back in to those good habits.
    I’m dealing with that crushing sense of “what made you ever think you could write fiction???” + the urge to crawl under a rock and stay there because truly my stuff isn’t good enough (Psst! NOT YET.)

    I really have no clue what I’m doing, either with writing fiction or with social media.
    But Ann Patchett says the art of writing comes when you work (and keep working) on the craft. So
    I’m here to make some goshawful mistakes.

    I’ll mainly be using the accountability boards.
    Is that a place to log in and talk to actual people?

    I’ll stay quiet till May ends cuz I know y’all will be busy.
    I’ll be checking out them prompts though. I just saw Monique Cuillerier’s and immediately thought: I am a building. (Shameful confession: The fullblown thought was “I am North Tower on the night before…” aaaand that’d be a story that would traumatise a lot of people and never should be pubbed therefore I KILL it now.)
    But the building “spark” is out there for anyone who wants to borrow it. My next thought was about castles (I like them)…

    Much love and lots of gratitude to Julie Duffy and the entire STADA community + more power to all who are doing the full challenge.
    I’ll be back with my June goals and an update on what I did in May.

    1. I’m so glad you’re here! And it doesn’t matter that you’re “late”. Jump in and start writing today – use the comments feature under each prompt to keep us updated on how it’s going.

      I know how you feel coming back to fiction after years in the non-fiction world. It can be a bit intimidating but you have the advantage that you know how to finish pieces and how to view them (and the editorial process) dispassionately. It sounds like you’re willing to write through the mess and have some fun. Perfect!

      1. Hey…just saw this! Thanks Julie, for taking a moment out during such a busy month for the brand…appreciate it. Re stopping by some of the prompt pages…sure, will do! Added to my goals.

        Hmmmmm actually not much of a playing field advantage (though you’re right…it’s gotta be there somewhere under all the rust) I’ve made a mess of what was to be my first 5k word story and somehow it mutated into a goshawful 10,000 word mess of beautiful scenes with little to no relationship between them beyond a mental map I have of what goes where and ends up how.
        I still believe in the chars in my story and their motivation, I still believe the premise has heart and when I (force myself to) sit down at it, I keep writing new scenes instead of the relatively boring connective tissue which I should be writing. And then as expected I juddered to a complete halt, just this side of insanity. In hand is about forty pages of shredded cheese and the detailed plot for a novella for one of the sides…I had NO CLUE making up the facts was so much harder than just reporting them 😉

        The temptation to scrap everything and give up because I’m total absolute crap and never gonna be as good as George Saunders or Raymond Chandler is super strong but I recognise that for what it is (deceiving yourself bcuz you don’t want to do the grindy bits)…
        *TIP for absolute beginners:* Do not read the New Yorker for motivation and ignore all the advice to read 4 short stories a week + bypass the greats altogether until your wimpy writing muscles build some juice…bcuz those mothas will give your fragile ego a huge complex ;))) get writing first!!

        Anyway (for those that are still reading) I’ve deciced to set aside the Big Goshdarn Kablooie for a few days, instead of banging my head daily against the unyielding wall of its chest. Mebbe what it needs is a bit of a rest and some fresh eyes. I’ve missed my deadline anyway by a mile and realised I had absolutely no idea what I was doing, so I’ve signed up for a 10 day short story writing course.

        So my goals for the last ten days of May are:

        1. Complete 10-day course and do all the assignements by EoM (Days 1 & 2 completed)
        2. Read one book on writing craft (Current pick: Pressfield’s War of Art, halfway thru chapter 1)
        3. Ideate AND post on any 3 prompts that are part of the May challenge on this website, i.e. check back here three times more in the next ten days to keep myself accoutnable.

        Will be nice if I can:
        4. Finish the B.G.K.

        Thanks once more for the welcome note! I will be back to explore the site further.

    2. I thought about a sentient building too, but it veered too much into fantasy, and a longer piece I’d like to do sometime. Welcome!

  4. May 2021 Goals
    1. Finish and publish my website — seriously this time.
    2. Write as many poems as I can using the StoryADay prompts. My original plan was to write one a day, but I already missed that goal, thanks for being in the process of moving and trying to start a business and an additional job. I’m determined to write at least four new poems to share with my monthly poetry group and to consider compiling into a collection centered around Galveston — where I now live.
    3. My stretch goal is this: Finish reading The Emotional Wound Thesaurus and use it to create character arcs my two protagonists.

  5. Goals for May:

    1. Minimum 500 words/day
    2. Minimum 5250 words/week
    3. Finish “Portal” first draft (short story)
    4. Finish “Fireflowers” (short story)
    5. Get newsletters out on 5th and 23rd
    6. Get “The Confederate’s Wife” draft to 1/3rd.

  6. Back on the SWAGr list after several hectic months, but May is still busy – 3 weddings in 4 weekends (including my own son’s), so why not throw StoryADay in there too? Target 10K words, SOMETHING written for each prompt, and 2 blog posts. Good luck everyone!

  7. April goals achieved except for finding a storage solution to turn the corner of the bedroom where I write into an attractive inviting space……….now top of list for May!
    MAY 2021 GOALS
    Solve storage issue.
    Continue daily habits….
    Reading with writer’s eye, keeping notes on things that impress me.
    Collect Story Sparks.
    Write a Storyaday with Julie’s support. ( I’m not quite in a personal position to become a superstar but working towards it. 🤞).
    Start the next chapter of my novel.

  8. Apparently I’m writing a story every day?

    Also, my “stretch goal” is to do an hour of either brainstorming or revision. Not expecting to hit that every day, but if a given story comes relatively easily it might happen.

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  9. Well. This is a new one for me – setting public goals! But I feel like I’m ready for that 😀

    In the Month of May I will:
    Fill out a story framework card every day (this is where I need practice – completing a high-level story plan).
    Plan (& hopefully write! But I only commit to planning) my blog post series on creativity.
    Complete 5 short stories (any length is fine).

    Thank you all for being my witnesses & supporting my writing journey!

  10. This May:
    -Write a micro a day
    -Enjoy my 2 week writing class with Matt Kendrick
    (Sure, I’m not nervous at all, haha)
    -Write one blog post
    (it’s been many, many months since the last one)

  11. Let’s take a look see at April’s goals.
    April Writing Goals:
    ~S4S–1,000 words: 688 so far!—DONE
    ~Original 5k–5,000 words: Outline done—DONE
    ~IPQ–2,000 words: Idea made, sorta….—my person dropped but I picked up a pinch hit and it is DONE
    ~ULX–1,000 words: Well, I’ve got the doc made….—DROPPED
    ~RPX–500 words: Title and idea—DONE
    April Other Goals:
    ~Get job—JOB OBTAINED
    ~Start newletter—DID NOT
    ~Read more—NOT AT ALL

    I wrote about 11,000 more words last month. Yay!

    May’s goals:
    ~Story A Day in May, yay!!
    ~Drop some big bangs and DO NOT SIGN UP FOR MORE FOR THE LOVE OF !!!
    ~Fandom 5k: 5,000 words, might drop
    ~Hurt/Comfort: 1,000 words, might drop
    ~Stork Swap: 1,000 words, don’t want to drop
    ~Multifandom Drabble Exchange: Max 300 words, probably won’t drop
    ~Holmestice: 1,000 words, REALLY don’t want to drop
    ~Soul 2 Soul: 1,000 words, Idea already made

    Did I mention I have a problem?

    Other May goals:
    ~Settle in at work

    Phew! I’m exhausted just writing those out. But! Story A Day must commence.

  12. Hello. My SWAGR commitments for May 2021 are the following: Write for each prompt. Complete at least 4 stories a week. Gather more sparks. Read short stories. Be gentle on myself.

  13. Don’t seem to have left any goals for last month:-( Oops!
    This month I will: –
    1. Attempt to write a short story a day (or at least plan one)
    2. Continue to edit a draft novel of around 60,000 words.

  14. Three goals:
    1) write at least one story per week
    2) update my notes on the High Arctic (weather, light, nature, people)
    3) spend Thursday mornings at the library with my writing group – while I still can!

  15. Coming to the desk pumped to write a story every day in May – no matter how thin or meaty or sweet or sour. One can always adjust the flavors after throwing a few things in the pot. 🙂

  16. Write a story every day in May (starting stories counts).
    Got to specified morning sprints with a friend, 3x per week.

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