Goals allows you to set word or character limits to sheets and groups. During NaNoWriMo, you could make use of this feature to track your progress towards a fantastic 50,000 words goal. As a journalist, goals can help you to not exceed the character limit for a magazine article.

To attach a goal, click the paperclip button top right in the toolbar and select the circle icon.

You can also right-click on a group in the Library or on a sheet in the Sheet List to do the same.
Attach a goal

Now, you can specify in detail which goal to set for a sheet or group. Does your goal indicate a minimum, a maximum or just a guidance value? Is it based on characters, words or pages – or even on lines or sentences? Whatever it is, enter the amount you want to meet into the ??? field.

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about, at least, at mostcharacters, words etc.50000 words

That’s it – your goal is set. It will be blue when you start writing, and turn green when met. By becoming red it is indicating that you’ve overreached.

blue goalgreen goalred goal

For every goal, a small circle appears either in the Library, when the goal was attached to a group, or in the Sheet List, when the goal was attached to a single sheet. These tiny icons indicate your progress, helping you to keep track of your workload.

goals overview

If you don’t want to see goal icons in your sheet list, just go to the View menu › Sheet Preview to turn them off. However, you can also use Goals to track your writing progress very closely. Just open a goal, move the mouse cursor to its top right corner and click the detachment icon. Now you can put it anywhere on your screen. When you start typing now, you can monitor the state of your goal in real-time. The arrow in the upper right corner of the goal HUD is always there to show you to which group or sheet it belongs, should you ever forget.

goal teared off

Let’s suppose you are really ambitious to reach these crazy 50,000 words next month – you probably won’t have much time to socialize. Even then Goals are there to help: Just click on the small bent arrow next to the goal circle to share it on social networks. People will understand and leave you to write.

tweet goal

When November is over, this would of course also be very effective to let everyone know you actually made it! No matter if you’re working on a novel or on a blog post – enjoy writing towards a goal.

This post was updated October 9, 2015.