writing: June & July update

writing

So all plans re: blogging/vlogging/social media were tossed out the window in July. But that’s ok—the writing is strong and the words are coming. Unexpected circumstances aside, this draft will be done by the end of the month…

Now, for the stats:

  • Words (re)written in June: 16,888
  • Words (re)written in July: 33,609

good job, self. keep at it.

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writing: writing, craft, and motivational reads

I’m writing with a mission in mind: to polish one draft to a submission-ready state. I have two other drafts that are in early stages, and two stories that demand to be written, but I can’t do it all and I need to focus. Sometimes, I get bogged down in the details and forget to look beyond the manuscript to the craft of it. Every hour I spend writing is an hour I spend finding ways to improve and that’s something worth noting.
Right now, I’m building steam, but I know I can burn out fast. To keep myself going, I’ve lined up three books to read.

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I’ve read these authors before and I like their method of instruction. Sometimes I just need a push to keep going.

Are you working on a manuscript? How do you find the motivation to keep writing?

writing: the read-through of doom and editing prep

Another video on my current writing process and how I’m using the read-through to plan for the next stage: editing in rounds! Also received feedback from the first of my readers and looking forward to combining that with the changes I’m already planning :).

Are you drafting? How do you handle your edits?

writing: finding the will to go on, or self-motivation

I’ve been thinking about writing, next steps, and how to find the will to go on when there is no end in sight, so here are some of my strategies for staying on task (or trying to, anyway).

What are some of your strategies for staying motivated when working on a long-term project?

Let me know some of your thoughts in the comments 🙂

Now, I’m off to be frivolous (2.5 days of being in proper academic mode will do that to you).

post-January writing update :)

‘allo there dear readers and fellow writerly types! How was your January? Because mine was pretty productive… at least, that’s what my writing calendar says. I started keeping a writing calendar last year–just bought a cheap desk calendar from the Target $1 bins and started noting every time I wrote, even if it was just a 10 minute quickie. It’s a great motivator and makes me accountable to myself… kind of like logging work hours with visual appeal and stickers (!).

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February is coming along well. Reminding myself that I’m doing this for me and only me at this stage keeps the self-doubt to a healthy minimum, so I’m not turning into a puddle of anxiety on days when I don’t have the time or energy to write (again, calendar shows those instances aren’t as often as I fear). At this pace, I should be finishing up the draft sometime within the next 2-3 months. My revision has evolved into a major rewrite with plenty of new characters and plot elements. My world-building is all the better for these changes and I find myself learning more about existing characters’ motivations and personas. Of course, I worry that I’m going in too many directions, but outlining each chapter helps me stay on target even when surprises turn up.

On a side note, I’m also working on a chapter for a potential future academic publication on writing. It’s a collaboration and I was invited to write a piece on editing and revision… because I do an awful lot of that on a daily basis (and not just for my writing). It’s forced me to really consider how revision works, which has proven useful for my current project.

Here’s looking to mad writing and strong plots.

Adventures in re-writing, part 4

Writer’s Block struck this month. Between family medical dramas and too much writing at work, the idea of squeezing in time to write before or after work was a joke. Not only have I been dealing with too many life issues, professional writing tends to put me in a frame of mind that creeps into my creative writing and leads to some terribly dry prose. It was not a good place. But I’ve managed to break past it! Today, I had a major breakthrough in my writing (well, major for me) and finally got through one of the most important transitions in Cassiel–getting Cassiel out of London and on her adventure!

So how did I do it? I tried to find inspiration in other places. I turned to research. I became obsessed with train schedules and sweated the small stuff. I also made time to get away from the house and took my writing outside–to Starbucks, to the boy’s house, and to work. Sometimes, a change of scenery (both mental and physical) is all it takes. Sometimes, you need a bigger push. I’m hoping to steer clear of those times that require a greater push.

I’m still making good time and will try to continue to do so in order to meet my goal of 50K by June 20. With today’s sessions, I have just over 35K words. It was a good day 🙂

Cassiel, rewrite draft 1

About Cassiel

With her family and fortune gone, sixteen-year-old Cassiel Loriett is placed under the guardianship of the exacting Mrs. Maywoods, but there is more to her family’s fate than Cassiel knows and the only way to learn the truth is to solve the mystery herself. Willing to do whatever it takes to find out what really led to the loss of her father’s fortune and her mother’s unexpected death, Cassiel runs away with little more than her father’s journal a couple of clues, but first she has to stay away from Mrs. Maywoods and her brother, Mr. Stellworthy, who seems to take a strange interest in Cassiel’s position as the Maywoods’s erstwhile ward.

Finding herself on a quest, Cassiel ends up the unlikely resident of Walstone House–a derelict manor house run by Stephen Frye, and his cousins Christabella and Nathan Walstone, and owned by their reclusive grandfather, Pierce Walstone. Finding a friend and ally in Stephen, Cassiel sets on a journey that might mean losing it all, or finding herslf along the way.

A YA historical mystery set in late Victorian England.

A re-write in progress…

Follow my Cassiel writing updates here: http://things-she-said.org/tag/cassiel/