To set writing goals, determine the criteria of the finished project and the latest date you can complete the task, while leaving time for feedback and revisions. Plan milestones between the starting and ending point of the project to divide your progress into manageable portions. For example, manage a report with a two-week deadline by breaking your goals into scheduled blocks, such as gathering and evaluating sources, outlining, writing a first draft, refining arguments and editing grammar.
Make sure goals are measurable and encourage specific action. For personal projects with no deadline, think about your long-term goals and what short-term goals you must meet in order to accomplish your main task. For example, tackle a memoir by committing to writing one chapter a week. Based on the amount of content in each individual chapter, decide how much time you need to set aside in a particular week, and add the corresponding number of daily writing sessions to your calendar. Pay attention to your work pace and behavioral patterns, so you can revise unrealistic goals that you are frequently unable to accomplish.
Set improvement goals by identifying skills you want to strengthen. Create personal assignments that require you to emphasize each specific skill, and establish mini-goals to foster and gauge progress, such as researching expert tips or discussing critiques from writing partners.