Ten Things About My Writing

Erin tagged me for this post and I thought it was really interesting, especially since we are coming up on that “year in review” season! I found myself reflecting on how much I’ve learned this year.

Here are my 10 things:

1) I have learned how to set goals

I’ve changed a lot about my process this year and the best one is how I decide what to do and when. For example, I wanted to draft my book in three months, and knew I needed to average about 1500 words most days. I broke that up into three 500 word sections and BOOM – this draft is happening right on time! Sometimes it’s challenging — I don’t give myself total softballs. But I’ve found I’m more productive and motivated when I can check off each day’s progress with satisfaction!

2) When I am stuck I grab a pen and paper or my marker board

I find it easiest to brainstorm or unstick my writing by hand–something about the absence of a threatening empty screen helps restore my creativity.

3) I require my specified soundtrack or playlist, or total silence

I can write to music or without it but I need the mood to be just right!

4) My brainstorming process has evolved

I used to think any idea could be The One or could work, but I’m better at discerning the components that make a good idea. Many things sound cool or look cool and might even be cool — but they aren’t always what I need for a particular project! (And they don’t always lead to a new project, either). I also realized I have a limitless supply of ideas–I don’t have to worry about using up my 10 good things. I can make more, anytime!

5) I have learned to steal time for writing whenever and wherever

My latest project has happened in the car, waiting in lines, at work, at home–I don’t need a special place or time to write and it has been so liberating!

6) My outlining process has evolved

I have always been an outliner (after a disastrous pantsed project) but this year I learned I never outlined enough. The first half would be full of details, fully imagined scenes, specific plot points, and the last half would be something like “and somehow we get to this point!” Of course, my draft would fall apart in act 3 and I would spend forever working on it, or be forced to abandon it entirely. This time I was careful to specify every act, scene, and arc, and I will never do it any other way! It’s far too helpful and has made drafting a breeze.

7) My favorite thing to write is dialogue–especially with dashes

“This is self-explanatory,” said Mary Sue.
“I don’t think–”
“It is.”

8) I have to include an animal

I’m incapable of writing a story that does not include some sort of furry companion for the main character. I tried this time and failed. Going forward, I’m just going to accept this!

9) I know when to start and I know when to stop

It took me several years but I finally know when I need to stop and plan before I word vomit into my document. I also know (I think!) when to stop working on the background stuff and just write the scene. It’s a weird gut instinct but I am not complaining!

10) The more I write the more valuable my CP’s have become!

My writing has improved tremendously from my critique partners’ input and experience, and I tapped into that even more with my current story. Having eyeballs on my outline (which was also more detailed than ever) saved me from a few pitfalls and made me more confident when I began drafting. Any story is a group effort in the publishing business, but I think it’s a group effort before you get that far, too. They’ve really taken me to the next level and I could not be more grateful!



2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. erinkbay
    Dec 15, 2016 @ 07:26:58

    Ahh!! Yay!!! I love this post!!! Haha, I especially love that dialogue bit!!!! <333333333

    Liked by 1 person


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