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The Importance of a Writing Plan For Writers

Updated on May 29, 2014

Do you have a business plan for your writing?

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Same Message, Different Words

If you are a writer who simply writes for your own enjoyment, and you have no plans of ever trying to sell your work, then move on. Go watch a soap opera or run some errands, but don’t waste your time reading one more word of this article. Unlike Budweiser, this one is not for you.

If, however, you have a vision of one day selling an article to a magazine, or becoming a best-selling author, or even making passive income on some writer’s site like HubPages, then you should not only read the rest of this article but you should have it branded on our figurative forehead.

I admit that I am not the sharpest tool in the tool shed. There are some lessons that have come to me the hard way, and considerably fewer that have come easily. Luckily I have a marketing degree and happily I paid a certain amount of attention while getting that degree.

One of those lessons that was continually pounded into my impressionable and yet stubbornbrain was that every business must have a business plan. What is that you ask?

I am going to borrow from our good friends Wikipedia for a definition of a business plan:

“A business plan is a formal statement of a set of business goals, the reasons they are believed attainable, and the plan for reaching those goals. It may also contain background information about the organization or team attempting to reach those goals.”

Focused and relaxed
Focused and relaxed

My Own Experience As an Example

I would love to tell you that the day I decided to make writing my business that I immediately sat down and wrote out a business plan, but that would be a fabrication of the highest order. Remember the tool shed analogy.

I spent a good twelve months randomly writing articles on a whim before it dawned on me that I needed focus. I had no plan and my lack of focus was a direct result of that. I was a writer for sure but I had no direction. I had some idea of what it was I wanted to accomplish, but no clear path to travel.

Taking the definition apart, let’s look at the first section, namely a formal statement of a set of business goals.

Looking back I had a nebulous idea of what goals I wanted to attain. I wanted to be a well-known writer whose words inspired others and yes, I wanted to make some money doing this writing thing. That was all I had.

Why did I think they were attainable? I know this will sound laughable, but I believed I could reach my goals because other writers had done so. If it had been done before then I saw no reason why I couldn’t do it. Like I said, laughable1

And what plan did I have for attaining those goals? Well, I was going to write. Then I was going to write some more and then, when I was done with that, I was going to write a bit more.

Do you see where this is going? I did not have a clue, and if I had continued on that path the outcome was predictable: I was going to fail and fail miserably.

Well, Daddy didn’t raise no quitter, so if I was going to continue to write then I needed to develop a very clear and concise plan and that’s exactly what I did.

Let’s take a look at it.

A Formal Statement of Business Goals

My formal statement goes something like this:

I will be a financially successful writer whose work helps and inspires others.

Short and simple. With this statement I was declaring that I needed to find a way to make money doing this and I needed to focus my writing on the topic of inspiration. No more writing about nature or tourist sites. No more writing humor pieces or “how to” articles. I now have a clear direction that guides every article that I write. This in effect is what I refer to as niche writing. It’s a big world out there with thousands of topics worthy of a writer, but to do a fine job one must find a niche; one must become an expert in that niche. Then you have narrowed the competitive field and given yourself a chance at success.

So I declared two niches: one is a niche that helps writers learn their craft, and one is a niche of personal essays that discuss life and finding hope.

So far so good. Now, how about the reasons why I believe those goals are attainable.

Number one, without a hint of ego, I believe I am a good writer. I believe I can be an excellent writer and that is entirely up to me. If I do the work and continue to grow in my craft, then I will make it.

Number two, the world will always need good writers. With seven billion people on this planet there are more than enough readers out there who will embrace a good writer. They always have and they always will.

Number three, the marketplace is wide open for gunslingers who are willing to try all of the weapons at their disposal. The internet and Social Media have opened up new avenues to follow. The advent of eBooks and online magazines and newspapers has increased the number of markets that will pay money for good writing. In other words, never before have there been so many opportunities for writers who want a piece of the big pie.

And that brings us to my plan for achieving my goals.

The Plan

Let’s take a look at what I have done so far and then we’ll chat a bit about the future. To date I have done the following:

  • Started a writing business “Professional Writing Services”
  • Created a website for that business
  • Created a website for my novel
  • Created a line of goods that relate to the novel
  • Printed business cards
  • Established myself online in the social media sites
  • Settled on a tagline “Helping Writers To Spread Their Wings and Fly.”
  • Wrote over 500 articles for HubPages which I use to submit to magazines
  • Established my platform as a professional writer; sold articles to magazines
  • Entered the blogging world and currently have one blog with writing tips
  • Created YouTube videos that support my articles
  • Joined writing forums and communities
  • Gave readings at bookstores and libraries

I’m sure I have forgotten some things but that will give you an idea of what has been done so far. As for the future, my mind is spinning with ideas.

I recently discovered blogtalkradio.com and the possibilities there are unlimited. I can easily see myself having a weekly radio talk show discussing all facets of life and thus inspiring people not only with my writing but also over the internet airwaves.

I want to do more with YouTube and will as soon as I learn to squeeze more time out of the day.

My wife and I are looking at property to buy. In two years we want to move out to the country, and one thing we would like to do is establish a writer’s institute where people can come and retreat for a week and learn about writing.

Enter the world of newspaper syndication and get my own weekly syndicated column in newspapers.

Continue to write novels. I have two I am working on currently and my ideas are endless. Writer’s block? What is writer’s block?

And the list goes on and on!

There is peace in knowing where we are going as writers
There is peace in knowing where we are going as writers

Constant Flux

Like anything else in life, this process is constantly being tossed about by life. Things come up. Bills need to be paid. Life gets in the way and yes, life provides new ideas. I am willing to adjust my plans and I am willing to try new things, but my goals will not change.

I cannot overemphasize the importance of having a direction for your writing. Decide what is important to you and then draw up that plan. If something isn’t working then try something else. If something is working then for goodness sake keep pounding it for all it is worth.

Above all, do not give up! If this is your passion then follow that passion through hell and high water.

2013 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

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    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Awww, MIchele, thank you for your kind words. I always loved teaching, and after I left the classroom for good it was only natural that I turned to teaching about writing. I am very happy that you found this useful.

    • misslong123 profile image

      Michele Kelsey 3 years ago from Edmond, Oklahoma

      A very helpful hub for me! I took lots of notes and read it three times. I really want to learn to be a better writer. Your future goals are amazing! I have really struggled with finding my niche, because I have too much knowledge in too many areas, but this article REALLY helped me narrow down my FOCUS. I think this hub combined with another one of yours I've been studying will help me set up a business plan with goals and all. You are truly a great teacher! Thank you for taking your time to share your wisdom! Michele Jones

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eddy, I am very excited for you. I would love to hear more about it in an email, and hear about the direction you are taking with it...if you have the time.

      But today I want you to enjoy the weather and the time off with your loved one.

      love,

      billy

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      Oh yes Billy another gem from you my dear friend. This one I am voting up, sharing and saving.

      Much of what you have set in place I shall need to do in order to set my new project on the right track.

      As you know Billy you are a very dear friend of mine and I can relate to all your hubs but this one at this moment in time is so so inspiring.

      Today the weather is glorious; the sun is shining and it is only 8.15 am yet. Sunday is also Dai's only day off from work so I am not sure where our journey may take us but armed with notepad, pen and camera I feel a good day ahead. Thank you for being such a wonderful friend Billy and here's wishing you a great Sunday also.

      lots of love fro my little corner of Wales.

      Eddy.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Welcome back Lea and thank you so much. I hope you are rested and happy my friend.

      Thank you for the kind words. If I am an inspiration to some then I am grateful and satisfied. I want others to be as excited about life as I am. :)

      Have a wonderful weekend and good luck with that unpacking.

      bill

    • Sparklea profile image

      Sparklea 4 years ago from Upstate New York

      Billy buc When you open that writer's retreat I want to be first in line!

      Terrific Hub! I printed it all out. I have been on vacation and almost done unpacking...but am slowly getting back to checking out hub pages and your writing advice is phenomenal.

      You are so inspirational with all you have accomplished!

      Voting up and awesome. Can't wait to check out other hubs I have missed over the past few weeks. God Bless, Sparklea :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks reviewstop and I hope having a plan helps you with your productivity and purpose. Good luck!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Glimmer, you have a niche that will do well if you pursue it constantly...I hope you do because I want you to be successful in your writing.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      Well, when I first started writing here I never even dreamt I'd need a business plan. It was not something I was even sure would work out for me. So far it has, and I am thinking that as I write more and explore other possibilities I will need to do one. It's just like opening any other business. Really useful hub for writers. Thanks for the reminder!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Anna, thank you! A couple years down the road...that's what I am shooting for and I just have to be patient.

    • Anna Haven profile image

      Anna Haven 4 years ago from Scotland

      Sound advice as always.

      I know exactly what I want. The winding road to it is a tad more blurry; but I view it as a few years down the line.

      Now your writer's retreat idea seems perfect for you. You really would be able to make a difference to people's lives, skills and dreams. As you do now.

      I think Bill it may be your destiny.

      Anna

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jim, thank you so much and I hope this gives you the direction that you say you need. Best wishes to you my Oregon friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michael, I have no doubt that you will prevail and win, and I'll celebrate that day with you. :)

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Bill, this is one of your most inspirational articles, and one that should be read by all of us wannabes. I admit to being unfocused and scattered. Perhaps rereading and beginning a real plan will help.

    • Michael-Milec profile image

      Michael-Milec 4 years ago

      Bill,

      I'll stay close, awake

      As long is it take'

      Wrestling , as long, - until

      I prevail and win.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michael, I in no way thought you were rude. I understand there is a language barrier and it often times affects the meaning of what is written. I am just grateful that I do not have to write in your language. If that were the case we would never be able to communicate. :) I am proud to call you my friend and I love meeting new people and learning from them.

      May we have a long and fruitful friendship, Michael.

      blessings always,

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Connie, it is my pleasure. I want all writers to realize their dreams, and that means helping each other when we need to....you would do the same for me.

      Thank you my friend and have a great Wednesday.

      bill

    • Michael-Milec profile image

      Michael-Milec 4 years ago

      Good evening Bill.

      Please forgive me for taking your time by my nonsense, but I let my feeling prevail that I need to do some clarification what I wanted to say when I've said what is written .

      Your gracious respond suggests that we both know to have long life ahead of us. My remark " one day after your f I n a l guideline will be released.".. was very poorly written, thus your answer is correctly phrased , not " hurting " a dead flesh. I had in mind my slow progression in understanding the art of writing according to your " gospel" which I never heard of before and fell in love with it as the necessity to know in order to, stay close to the real writers.

      Since my following your articles, I started sanding down rough spots of "my writing" starting with grit # 80. Assuming these basic lessons of guidelines are nearing to end, I was encouraged in my thinking that I might be able to put my niche in order , or so to step up.

      Going back to time when I was writing, it was just for the sake of writing mainly in non English languages. At the time " my English " has reach certain acceptance level a sudden death ended all my writing ambitions, making me think it was over with for good. One year ago a friend started encouraging me to come back , introducing me to Hub Pages. That was shortly after I made decision to use first time computer in my life, even after we had at least one in the household since eighties . You my dear friend and rest of all the kind , friendly authors, has accepted my unskilled labor as I was publishing some meaningful comments looking for opening to " belong".

      This is what I had in mind while writing," my first article will see daylight.. "Please, accept my apology for being rude, talking to you and depriving you of your valuable time . Thank's.

      Have a blessed night.

    • grandmapearl profile image

      Connie Smith 4 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

      Billy, if you find out how to 'squeeze more hours out of the day', please let me know, would ya? I have written my business plan, and then re-written it because what I used to think was a goal has changed. When it comes right down to it, I have not settled on a clear path and I need to do that, and stick to it. Thanks for reminding me that my plan must be a priority. Up++++ for this most excellent article ;) Pearl

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michael, my friend, my final article will be the day I die...and then I'll never see you first. LOL I hope you writer before then.

      Thank you as always!

      blessings

      bill

    • Michael-Milec profile image

      Michael-Milec 4 years ago

      Hi Bill brother, thank you.

      Extraordinarily great. You're proof once again of great universal principle give and it shall be given back to you... The more you giving, even more givent to you - you just share. This one targeted more of my needs.. . One day after your final guideline will be released, crediting to you , my first article will see daylight.

      Please ,continue to be a blessing as you are .

      Up, awesome and useful.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Aurelio, great comment and there is no doubt you are following a plan and following it well. Thanks for a wonderful perspective.

    • alocsin profile image

      alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

      The only reason I'm able to make a living as a freelance writer is because I have a plan and stick to it religiously. With any profession, you cannot just do the job when the mood strikes or when you're inspired, unless you want to be paid only when your boss is inspired. I'm not sure why folks think writing is any different. Voting this Up and Useful.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ann, so nice to see you again. You certainly come from a family of artists. What an enlightening household that must have been while growing up.

      Best wishes to you my friend and thank you for a wonderful comment.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      And yet, Vicki, I am always short on time too. :) It is the same lament for most writers I'm afraid. Do what you can and eventually you will find the time. :) Thank you my dear friend.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Randi, and I'll be by to see your new work shortly.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Phoenix, you can borrow anything. That's what writers should do. There are few new ideas in this world; we all beg, borrow and, well, hopefully not steal what we need. LOL Good luck my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Dianna, if we ever pull it off you can count on getting an invitation. Thank you my friend and have a great week.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Alicia, it is so hard to write and work full time. My respect goes out to you, and I hope this summer allows you the time to find focus and spearhead a new plan. Thank you!

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 4 years ago from SW England

      You certainly are an excellent writer. I've always wanted to write ever since I can remember but then it's in my family. My father wrote articles, supported by excellent photography, he wrote plays and shared his love of words with me. My mother was a musician so appreciated the arts and also liked to write occasional short stories. Many in my family encouraged reading and a love of words and the learning of foreign languages, which was so good for me. To have a plan is essential if you want to make money. I'm not so bothered about the money but I do want to write well and to use the expertise and knowledge that I have in a few fields (dyslexia for one). Your guidelines and your inspiration are great - we need a few more people like you around. Good luck with finding the peaceful place in the country; a writers' retreat is a brilliant idea. I know it's been done in many places but somehow I think yours would be one of, if not the, best. All the best to you and yours! Ann

    • profile image

      Vickiw 4 years ago

      Hi Bill, this is a really motivating Hub, and very inspiring. If only life didn't intervene so much. I am constantly amazed by your productivity, and just don't seem to achieve that myself unfortunately, even though I try. I know we all have the same 24 hours each day, but my 24 seem to go way too fast. A great Hub.

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      A "business plan" Seeing it on paper, in black and white, is a little like a wake up call. Thank you for the reminder, as well as good pointers for following through.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      I always knew I needed some sort of organization when it came to writing but was never sure how to go about it. The samples you provide here makes a lot of sense and are quite doable.

      Hope you don't mind if I 'borrow' this outline. lol

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      Radioblogspot sounds interesting. I will have to check that out, Bill. You are quite an industrious person already, but I can see how your moving to the country to establish a writer's retreat would complete who you truly are - author, writer, humanitarian. I would love to attend one of your retreats!

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Excellent advice, as always, Bill. I will be changing and adding to my writing plan as soon as school is over in a week's time and I have time to think seriously about the future. Thank you for the useful suggestions - I'll be considering them very carefully!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Nell, you have written some articles that would do quite well in magazines. Pick up a magazine sometime and read some articles and then ask yourself if you can do as well. The answer will be yes!

      Thanks my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Natasha, I think that is a valid reason to fall a little behind. :) Enjoy your time with him and thanks for stopping by.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Hi billy, what a great idea, to write a plan. And the idea of submitting your hubs to magazines, I just never thought of it! I tend to get tied up in the day to day stuff, and need to be more organised, great advice as always, nell

    • Natashalh profile image

      Natasha 4 years ago from Hawaii

      I think I'm slowly finding my way towards a focal point...well, I was, but now things have been a little derailed temporarily! My man is home from deployment and has 2 of every 3 days off right now, so I don't feel inclined to tell him to wait for me to write and I'll be with him later! Things will get back to more of a routine later (when he hasn't been back from deployment for less than a week!). Hopefully I can come up with a more solid plan then!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Deb, I will indeed, as will you. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Dahlia, it is a complicated life we writers live; there are few easy decisions, but I love being in charge of my own career.

      Thank you my friend and I hope your upcoming week is a good one.

      Sending blessings and hugs your way.

      bill

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      You definitely have a plan of action, attainable goals, and a LOT on your plate. Furthermore, you will achieve it.

    • livingsta profile image

      livingsta 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      Another hub from you Bill, a very useful one. There are so many things one needs to take into account and prepare for as a writer. Thank you for sharing this information and tips with us. And yes, a writing plan is very important. Many a times I have found that help me to be focused and achieve what I wanted.

      Hope you had a wonderful weekend my friend. It's almost Monday here. Have a great week ahead.

      Sending you love and hugs

      Sharing this!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Skye, you are a power of positive vibes. Thank you so much for the kind words. We all must give back and help each other. That, I believe, is one of our purposes on this planet....to do all things with love. :)

      blessings as always my friend

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Gypsy, it is so easy to leave the path and start wandering aimlessly. Just consider me the little reminder that won't go away. :) Thank you and I hope you are enjoying your Sunday.

    • skye2day profile image

      skye2day 4 years ago from Rocky Mountains

      Bill Dear bro. Well my friend you have done it again. Another wow article. Your inspiration is contagious, catching and heartfelt. You put a spark into my thoughts brother and pep into my step. I thank you for your giving heart and your wonderful tips.

      A niche is so importantnt that was one of my first lessons and it really helped to stay on focus. When writing from the heart with passion you can not go wrong, unless you do not do it. I tend to move a bit slower than some when publishing but I keep going and have vision! Bill mighty warriour you keep em coming. U will I know it; Phil 4:13. When you get that writing learning center open, I am on it bro. Skye2day will be there! What a wonderful and glorious vision! 'My people perish without vision,' says the Lord.

      I am sure many will be touched right where they need touching with your awesome works here. God Bless you brother, 100 fold!

      My love In Christ Jesus. Your sista, Skye.

      shared, voted (;

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 4 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      As always Bill your hubs provide inspiration and great advice. I need to get things straightened out so this comes just in time. Passing this on.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Joe, I'll tell you buddy, life is hectic right now for both of us. With me it's extended family problems that need to be dealt with. I'm sorry I can't give you more time but I need to go take care of some more stuff before I can go to bed.

      Thank you my friend.

      Aloha,

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Amy, I'm so sorry I'm late getting here. My life got hectic this weekend and I can't give you the time you deserve. Never give up....those words were written with people like you in mind my dear. You are a fighter...I was going to say a survivor, but that implies barely hanging on and you do so much more.

      Thank you for taking the time to leave your usual wonderful comment. Sending you hugs and love from Olympia.

      bill

    • hawaiianodysseus profile image

      Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

      Bill, my plate is swamped. I've painted myself into a corner, and I am responsible for getting myself out of it. Nevertheless, after days of being cooped up due to the rain, a long walk this morning did wonders for my soul.

      I like the meat and potatoes feel of this hub, and I love the vision that's clearly stated but even more so peeking from between the lines. My friend, I enjoy the Bill I see now via HubPages, but I also am anticipating the day when I can tell my wife and children, "WOW! I knew that guy when..." Thanks for understanding..."busy" is your middle name, and I know you can related. By the way, in case I overlooked it before, thank you very much (mahalo nui loa) for always taking the time to say "hi!" even when you were in the midst of a hundred and one projects. See ya, Bill! Aloha!

      Joe

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      mr-veg, I know of no other way to succeed than to work hard. :) Good luck with that focus and thank you!

    • Amy Becherer profile image

      Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      The last three years, Bill, have taught me more about survival than the sum of my prior years. I've learned to expect the unexpected; that life carries no guarantees. I don't plan my life anymore, because all my best laid plans were gone in an instant. For me personally, plans are limiting. Had I stuck to my original focus in writing, I would have never tried poetry. If I'd only gone for writing gigs that paid, I'd not only starve, I would have missed out on getting letters published in Vogue and Elle magazines. Out of the blue, an editor hired me to write personal articles on realtors for a fantastic online and 'in print' real estate magazine at lucrative 'per article' pay. The week he was to call me with my first assignment, I never heard from him. I felt nothing, and simply chalked it up to another 'real life' example of not putting all of my eggs in one basket. This is life today...here today and gone tomorrow. And, no, I'm not depressed, but through real life experiences, have come to the realization that no one owes anyone anything, yet we still need each other.

      I think the most hopeful and inspiring words that you left for me are "Never give up." That's my plan and that's my truth. Thank you, Bill. Sending love to you from St. Lou...

    • mr-veg profile image

      mr-veg 4 years ago from Colorado United States

      Those are pretty useful tips Bill !! You worked pretty hard isn't it ? I think I lack focus and that's not helping :) Your article serves as inspiration to get going.. Voted up and sharing...!!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      DDE, that's what it is all about...focus! If we are to succeed then we need to focus.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Carol, I think you are enough of a business woman to understand the value of a plan, and you are probably following one more closely than you think. I have great confidence that you will succeed.

      Thank you and have a great Saturday.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michelle, fail to plan and plan to fail. I love that. So simple and so true. Thank you for sharing that.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jean, it does indeed! I write to share thoughts, and hopefully to inspire and help other writers. It is very gratifying to hear that my words did some good for someone. Thank you and best wishes on your writing career.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Goals in writing should be practiced and focused on being organized is correct and most helpful.

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      carol stanley 4 years ago from Arizona

      Bill: I love your organization and know that you are following it. I am a floater and come up with new ideas and follow them. THough I love to write and enjoy getting paid...it is one of several things I do. Fortunately at this time I have a site I get paid per article. I will eventually write again for Hub, and I can see what a great benefit it is for you. Your articles will work so well many places. I am working on a blog and a website...And I do tend to jump all over the place, though I am trying to be more focused and this hub made me feel a little guilty..not too much though. With what you are doing.. the goals will be attained. And it is easy for you with a set plan..you just DO IT everyday...

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      Michelle Liew 4 years ago from Singapore

      As they say, fail to plan and plan to fail. Thanks for always sharing these writing tips with us, Bill!!

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      Jean Bakula 4 years ago from New Jersey

      I love your plan. I have outlines of topics I want to discuss on what sites I want them on. So I can pick up on one of them at the beginning stages and work on it, but if a lot is going on at another site, I can easily move over to whatever I have planned out for there. I find it made my writing life a lot easier to have a plan, but you gave me some good ideas there. Thanks. And whenever you hear that someone learned something from what you wrote, it makes it all worth it, doesn't it? Best Wishes.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      vkwok, I'm just doing what I was raised to do....give back to the community. Thank you!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ruby, you are a natural born leader and I appreciate you too. :) I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

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      Ruby Jean Fuller 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

      I refuse to stop reading your material, although you have repeatedly said that it's not for people who do not wtite for money. Shame on you. We like to learn too. I joined your WorldPress blog. I enjoy writing using prompts. Thank you..You are appreciated....

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      Victor W. Kwok 4 years ago from Hawaii

      You always have so many helpful tips for us writers. Thanks!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Bill, those are great questions and ones that many have asked before. I'll take the second question first.

      Yes, once an article is published in a magazine, it then becomes duplicate and will be flagged by HubPages. Such is the price of fame. :)

      As for your first question, it depends on the magazine. When I submit an article, I read the submission guidelines of the magazine first. Some will allow you to send the article with your query letter. If that is the case, I have always kept my article saved on Word and I simply attach the article to the query letter, or paste it at the bottom of the query letter if the magazine does not accept attachments.

      Some magazines want just a query letter, in which case you simply pitch the article without sending it.

      I never send a link to HubPages. That is considered unprofessional and I promise you the magazine editor will not go to the bother of opening the link.

      I hope that helps.

      Thanks, buddy, and have a great weekend.

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      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Bill, this was very interesting. Something you wrote really struck a cord with me, the part about submitting your hubpage articles to magazines. So how exactly do you go about doing this? Do you submit a link to your HP's article to the magazine? Do you submit the article using another avenue? Do you keep a copy of your articles in MS Word and send that? I'm curious as to how this works. Also, are there any issues with now having duplicate content out there, say in a magazine and here on HP's?

      You certainly have given all of this a lot of thought and have really laid out a blueprint for what any serious writer should be doing. Many thanks for sharing your knowledge. Have a great weekend.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      DJ, you are doing wonderfully my friend. It takes time and patience to master the internet and feel comfortable there. It will come. The most important thing to never forget is that in the end it is the quality of your writing that will count the most. Never lose sight of that as your goal.

      Thank you for the kind words and yes, I am like the proud parent. I want you all to succeed at your passion.

      blessings to you my friend

      bill

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ken, do what works for you, but do it with focus and you will see results my friend. Thank you!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Heidi. You of all people understand this, as I knew you would. I will keep pounding this subject in hopes that more writers wake up to the call.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      starstream, that was kind of you to say and I thank you!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Vinaya, it is very obvious that you have a plan and I, too, hope it is successful my friend. Thank you!

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      DJ Anderson 4 years ago

      Wow! I have just gotten comfortable with cut and paste and

      now I am supposed to come up with a business plan??

      Have you noticed any pictures in my hubs? That should

      scream volumes as to where I sit on the proverbial writer's

      progressive fence. My only chance lies in finding a site that does not allow pictures or videos. LOL

      Thou doth expect too much!

      Truthfully, I am writing every day. I am also "studying" everyday, from books that were ordered online. (Yep, you recommended them.) I work at a slow pace, but I am enjoying it greatly.

      I read and re-read your hub information. They are worth their weight in gold. But, this one, I will cut and paste and save until I am ready to take on bigger challenges.

      Maybe, I could start my own hub on "How to Cut and Paste".

      My luck, HP would get me for plagiarizing and put that "X" on my back.

      OK, now I am serious............

      Bill, you give so much to those of us who call ourselves writers.

      You are like the proud parent who will not give up on their

      struggling kid. And, to many of us, you are the one and only voice that we hear saying, "I believe in you; you can do this."

      I want to say, "Thank you!"

      Your advice and encouragement are greatly appreciated.

      DJ.

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      KenWu 4 years ago from Malaysia

      That's impressive and your achievement on your goals are pretty impressive. I must start modelling you.

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      Heidi Thorne 4 years ago from Chicago Area

      Yes, a writing plan IS a business plan. And, yes, it's in a constant state of flux. Though I had a plan to have one blog address several different marketing aspects, it was becoming unfocused and the results were showing it. Now, though my vision and mission are the same, I realized my writing needed to address various niches differently (something we both keep harping about) and in different places for each. Having a plan and monitoring it helped make those necessary changes. Keep on pushing the writing = business message!

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      Dreamer at heart 4 years ago from Northern California

      Keep going for that country property to start a writer's school. Nothing can stop you now! You contribute fine articles for dedicated writers.

      thanks.

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      Vinaya Ghimire 4 years ago from Nepal

      I began writing as an amusement, sometimes to escape pain and suffering. After more than 10 years writing, it has become my vocation. Your writing plan is very impressive. I myself has churned out some plan. I hope it works.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, I would love to tell you what video camera we use but I don't have a clue. Bev has it right now and she's gone....it's just a small one we picked up at Best Buy for about sixty bucks on sale. You really don't need an expensive one, and if your digital camera shoots videos then use that as well.

      As for this article, it's all about focus. If writing is going to be your business and your career then you need a well-defined plan. I don't do anything that isn't aimed at my goal. Everything I write is aimed at the big prize now that I have laid it all down in a plan.

      It's time for you to get off of the mat and get back in the fight young lady.

      love,

      bill

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Suzie, that was supposed to be a slap on the back. LOL

      Thanks my dear. I think this is important. Writers need focus and they need to see the brass ring that they are chasing. Every step we take should be aimed at whatever our goal is. You are doing so well and I want you to succeed.

      hugs coming your way

      bill

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Russ, we are always better at giving advice than taking it. LOL Thanks for admitting it and believe me, I know exactly what you are talking about.

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      Suzanne Ridgeway 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Hi Bill,

      "The man with a plan shouts YOU CAN" . . . Love it! Your own example of your writing goals and plans is an excellent one so many of us can use as a template. Whilst I wrote a different type of business plan some years ago, I have not given it consideration in doing for my writing, until now!

      Thanks so much for more wisdom and congratulations on all your achievements to date, it is inspiring and motivating to see.

      Have a great weekend, I gave Mick the "slap" as instructed !

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      Russ Moran 4 years ago from Long Island, New York

      Bill. I think writers don't realize that they have a business, and consequently need a business plan. I've written a book on business planning, but do I follow it with my writing activities? Nooo. I don't know why this is but i find your hub inspirational. I shall commence a writing business plan. Russ

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jo, thank you very much my friend. You work full-time, but one day you will be a full-time writer, and then you'll definitely have a business.

      Have a wonderful weekend and love coming your way.

      bill

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Liz! I'm just trying to give back to the community that has been so giving to me. :)

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      Elizabeth Parker 4 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      Bill- as always- very inspiring hub. I love the writer's institute idea. That sounds awesome. Thank you for writing this!

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      Jo Alexis-Hagues 4 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Bill, this is a generous gift to your followers; I for one, will be saving it for the future. I've not written a business plan before, so I' m going to have fun with this. Now all I need, is to go find a business. :)

      Take care love to you and Bev.

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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Bill, I'm going to use this article and your candor as the outline for my business plan. I've become very lazy since the content mill I write for has gone thru changes and I've had a multitude of computer problems. This may sound silly and/or off the wall, but today I purchased a bottle of St. John's Wort. It's supposed to help with mood and attitude.

      I need to jump back on the bandwagon. One thing I have been doing is tweaking the hubs that have empty or half circles as deemed by HP. It can only help me, although passively as far as income goes. It does, however afford me the opportunity to take a fresh look at what I've posted in the past and apply what I've learned since.

      I also have been looking into video cameras so I can widen my horizons and offer enhancements to my writing. What camera do you use to shoot your You Tube videos?

      I find this article one of the most beneficial ones you've written yet. They all are, but this one offers an outline so we better understand what it is we need to do in order to succeed.

      I absolutely love the idea of you creating a retreat for writers. That has Tweetie and Sheila written all over it!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lizzy, you're in it for the money just like most of us are; you can't fool me. :)

      As for Google questions yes, they are a thing of the past. :) Sigh indeed!

      The billybuc Radio Hour...it has a nice ring to it, doesn't it?

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      Liz Davis 4 years ago from Hudson, FL

      You keep telling me to stop reading, but I'm rebellious.

      So does this mean we're never going to get a Google questions hub again? *sigh*

      I'm looking forward to the blog radio billybuc hour. That's gonna be cool!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      kschimmel, thank you very much and I'm glad you like my website. Our provider is 1 & 1....my wife found them and she did all the work, so I can't take any credit at all, but I'll tell her what you said.

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      Kimberly Schimmel 4 years ago from North Carolina, USA

      I like your website. Could you tell me what platform you used to create it? I'm looking into Weebly, although my current blogs are on Blogger. I want to choose the "right" one before I pay for a domain and build a non-free website. Yours is just lovely--clean, attractive, and navigable.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      just-about, I understand being new to the internet. There are still things that seem so foreign to me....but I do have this HubPages thing down pretty well, and my offer of help was heartfelt. I don't offer if I don't mean it, so drop me a line if you have questions about HP.

      As for your family life, I'm sorry whatever happened, happened. Best wishes to you during this life change.

      bill

    • profile image

      just-about 4 years ago

      This has been a great help - I've got a "sort-of" business plan (no cash-flow stats or anything like that), whilst I'm just beginning to add hubs to Hub Pages I'm also setting up a blog and social networking activity to tie-in. At 55 I'm pretty new to all of this internet stuff (emails and shopping having been my only previous use of the internet). But sad changes in my family life have made it necessary for me to find out what I can do and try to earn something doing it ! Thank you for the advice - and for your warm welcome to Hub Pages.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Janine! Unlike you I always have doubts about my writing future. LOL I wish it were just a small bit easier.

      Enjoy your weekend and try to get lots of rest.

      bill

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mary, blessings to you and I'm sending you strength across the country. Hard times for your family and I wish you all well. Thank you for taking the time to visit me.

      Blessings on your weekend my friend.

      bill

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Karen, thank you so much and I am happy when my readers find something of value in my hubs. If this helps you then great.

      Have a wonderful weekend!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Faith, nothing is set in stone and of course we are always fine tuning our plans.....a business plan, as you know, is simply a guiding tool so that we remain focused.

      Thank you as always my friend and have a great weekend.

      blessings always

      bill

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      Janine Huldie 4 years ago from New York, New York

      Love your writing plan my friend. So simple and riect, yet so effective. I have no doubt that you are succeeding and will be truly successful in the future, too. Thank you as always for sharing a bit of yourself and your plan here with us!! Have a great weekend and as always voted and shared, too!!

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      Mary Craig 4 years ago from New York

      "I was a writer for sure but I had no direction", I can certainly relate to that and I did not find your "goal" laughable, you know there are other tools in the shed that aren't too sharp either.

      You are so right Bill, life has a tendency to get in the way. I am dealing with a dying mother-in-law - well, not just me, but you know what I mean. Lots of emotion and time spent in this area so for now, writing is a by-product I find time for. Hopefully, one day I will get back things seriously and when I do, this is the hub I will re-read first!

      Voted up, useful, awesome, interesting, and shared.

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      Karen Hellier 4 years ago from Georgia

      This is great Bill. I love how you showed us where you started, which is probably where a lot of writers are today. And then how you outlined your plan more specifically and gave us examples of what you've done to support your plan in concrete ways. So happy to have met you here on HubPages. You're a true inspiration to the rest of us who have writing dreams as well. Thanks for the encouragement and inspiration. You amaze me in that you keep coming up with such inspiring words every day.