Looking Forward To My 2020 Goals

Hakone Japan by Michael David Wilson

A week or so ago I looked back at my goals for 2019 and now it’s time to look forward to my 2020 goals. And whilst I admit that announcing my 2020 goals in February might seem a little late, I set these at the start of the year and have been dutifully working away at them for the last month or so.

Next month I’m returning to Japan and I’m hoping to take my Japanese language to the next level which is why so many of these goals are focussed on language learning. I’ve also set a number of writing and podcast goals. With that said, let’s jump into them.

Japanese Language Goals

Clear Anki listening deck at least once per week

Most of the people I know who can speak near-fluent Japanese credit Anki for a lot of their success. It seems of all the language learning methods and programmes, Anki is amongst the most successful. When applying the 80-20 rule (how can I exert 20% of the effort for 80% of the results), Anki and other spaced repetition flashcard programmes come up again-and-again. With that in mind, it’s a key part of my language learning routine. But my goodness are there a lot of flashcards to memorise and review. As long as I can clear the deck once every week then I’ll consider this goal a success. If I clear it multiple times then bonus!

Finish WaniKani

WaniKani is another spaced repetition flashcard programme. But whilst I’m using Anki predominantly to memorise Japanese phrases and sharpen my listening skills, WaniKani is purely for learning the kanji. WaniKani was one of the first Japanese language learning programmes I took seriously. So much so that the last time I was in Japan I knew a disproportionate amount of kanji for my speaking level (which was awfully low). In recent years I’ve let my WaniKani practice slip which is why I’m setting myself the ambitious (read ‘stupid’) goal of finishing the entire thing by the time 2020 ends.

Get N4 JLPT certificate

I’ve never taken a formal Japanese Language Proficiency Test but I think it’s time to remedy that. There are five levels, 5 being the easiest, 1 the most difficult. I’m easing my way in and signing up for the N4. No prizes for guessing what one of my goals for 2021 will be …

Complete DuoLingo

Duolingo is a relatively easy entry-level language learning app. And whilst it’s not going to level-up my language as quickly as WaniKani or Anki, it’s certainly a lot more interesting and enjoyable. So it’s time to complete Duolingo, at least with regards to Japanese.

Writing Goals

2 Novels/Novellas accepted for publication

Last year was mostly about short fiction (you can find links to many of my stories here) but this year I’d like to see more of my longer fiction readying itself for the big wide world. In a couple of months, The Girl in the Video, will launch, and the year after House of Bad Memories, via Grindhouse Press, but I’d like to have at least another two pieces of long-form fiction lined up for publication.

15 stories published

But I won’t be abandoning the short story. Last year I reached my ’10 stories published’ goal with a grand total of 12. This year I’m aiming for three more. This may be the most ambitious of my writing goals, everything else considered. That said, I’m off to a good start with the aforementioned The Girl in the Video and my short story ‘Don’t Punch Kyle’ which will be appearing in Dim Shores Presents Vol. 2.

Write a new novel/novella

Whilst I have a number of stories in the bank and ready to go, I’m always producing and want to keep things fresh. By the end of the year, they’ll be at least another novel or novella in the story vault, ready to ship to publishers and readers.

Podcast Goals

300 Patrons

Last year This Is Horror Podcast Patreon reached 200 patrons, this year I’m aiming for 100 more. The year has got off to a rocky start and we’re actually a few patrons down but Bob Pastorella and I are working towards this the only way we know how: putting out high-quality episodes as often as possible. As of today we’ve already put out ten This Is Horror Podcast episodes and we’re only in the first week of February.

So, how about you? What are your goals for 2020? Sound off in the comments or let me know over on Twitter @wilsonthewriter.

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