So I thought I'd start with this: http://tinyurl.com/86jan6a.
Nine Writing Milestones: Let's see...
1. First completed piece: Done.
2. First readers: Done
3. First critique: Done
4. First publication online: Not so fast. I know I should be paying attention to this, but here I am, with my blog, putting this out into the ether. So I have some catching up to do.
5. First publication print: I've had plenty of things published in newspapers. I count this.
6. First payment: I earn my living writing and editing stories. Call it a back-door entry, but I'm counting this, too.
7. First book-length draft: Now I'm into what the writer is talking about. I've written three book-length drafts. Several times. Over and over. And it's a bitch. In a good way.
8. First completed book: Taking into account what the writers's definition is: Yes. Twice. And the one I'm working on now is the one closest to meeting my personal level of "it's ready to go."
9. First published book: The author promotes the notion that if one's manuscript is published in ebook form this satisfies Milestone No. 9. Perhaps. And perhaps I'm still a hidebound traditionalist that wants to go the author-editor-publisher route, get the contract, the advance, proof the galleys, see the book in print, and send that to my Mom, who won't care a fig if it's on the Internet. You know what I mean.
My own 'big step': I'm in my first writers group. I've never taken a creative writing class, never even sniffed an MFA. Journalism major, like I said. And I'm transitioning to what I hope is a writing career. So yep, I am in writer's group. And it was a great time. I look forward to the next one.
I'll be checking out other writing blogs and sharing what I like. I hope you do the same. Let me know. We're all in this together.