Day One is a digital marketing agency. “This is Day One” is written in neon letters on the wall of their New York City office. I love the double entendre. This is Day One is both a “we’re here” announcement and a creative mantra.

Day One implies a fresh start. A new horizon. No baggage. Clean slate. Opportunity. Beginnings.

Today is Day One.

2020 is Day One.

Priorities & Microgoals

In 2019, I focused on the theme of Simplify. I ignored the shiny-object-syndrome activities that in 2018 cost me far too much time and money. The result was an easier-to-navigate website, continued growth in newsletter subscribers, and publication of RUSSIAN MOJITO and FELIZ NAVIDAD FROM ACAPULCO.

Related post: Open Letter to 2019

With 2019’s framework in place, 2020 will be about priorities: wellness, creativity, family, and community. My writing productivity depends on the energy I get from all those priorities being in balance.

My approach uses microgoals. Small, easy-to-accomplish steps.

For example, when it comes to wellness, I never want to be one of those people who falls and can’t get up. Here’s what I’m doing about it:

Wellness > flexibility & strength > 60 squats a day

I’ve actually been doing 3 sets of 20 squats every day for about 6 weeks. 20 as the coffee perks, 20 during a break from standing at my desk, 20 as the dogs gobble their dinner, etc. I can already tell the difference.

Stretch goals

Microgoals are on the minimal end of the goal spectrum. Easy.

Stretch goals are on the max end. Hard.

A stretch goal is a challenge. A mountain to climb. The thing that requires multiple microgoals to accomplish.

Video is my 2020 stretch goal. YouTube is a great discoverability engine for creative types. Professional video content can be an effective way to reach mystery readers. But poor quality video can work against an author, too.

Related post: Things in the Mirror are Closer Than They Appear

I’d love to hire the Day One agency to make dynamite book trailers and social media videos. BUT  A) Undoubtedly  too expensive, and B) I want to learn new digital skills.

Is this Type A behavior? (“It has to look perfect! I need to do this myself!”) Probably.

But if I break it down into microgoals, video is less scary:

Creativity > Video book trailers > Buy Adobe Premiere
Creativity > Video book trailers > Watch all Adobe Premiere tutorials
Creativity > Video book trailers > Make test videos until satisfied with quality

Your turn

2020 is full of possibilities. 365 opportunities to get after it. 

Start with these questions:

  • Where do you want to be this time next year?
  • What tangible accomplishment is a priority?
  • What microgoals will form the first steps?

This is Day One.

CARMEN AMATO

Mystery and thriller author. Retired Central Intelligence Agency intel officer. Dog mom to Hazel and Dutch. Recovering Italian handbag addict.

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