Posts Tagged ‘NARWA’
I didn’t get much writing done this weekend, opting instead to spend a romantic weekend with the Boyfriend. I did, however, get the chance to do a little reading.
The February issue of RWR contained an intriguing article titled “Speed as an Antidote to Writer’s Block.” The gist is that writing quickly — and regularly — helps us beat that devil procrastination.
Since I often find myself afflicted by that particular demon, I paid particular attention to that article. (In fact, it’s still the only thing from the issue I’ve read word-for-word. I’ve skimmed the rest, but not settled in to digest it yet.)
The article points out that speed writing is done:
- Without a lot of distractions, such as the Internet or reading back through a MS to “check” facts.
- Simply, as opposed to being a perfectionist looking for quality above all else.
- To be shared. Apparently, fast writers share their drafts ASAP, seeking feedback. A perfectionist, on the other hand, will revise, revise, revise (or stop writing at all) rather than let someone else read their “weak” effort.
Over the years, I’ve been more the perfectionist type. I stop writing when I hit that wall … and sometimes don’t go back to it for months.
Participating in the NaNo last November really helped me see the benefits of speed writing, though. I might not have written as quickly as the others (I never once won the “word wars” we had at write-ins), and I didn’t finish all 50,000 words.
But sitting down to write almost daily did help me get a lot accomplished, and I was able to ride that writing high to the end, finishing my story in early December, shortly after the end of NaNo.
So you have my pledge now that I’ll do the NaNo again this fall. I already have a plot marinating in my head for it, something I started working on after my NARWA group did a “Book in a Month” talk a couple of years. (I stalled out in the research stage, around Day 6, because I’m not much of a researcher anymore.) I do, however, have a basic outline for the story, which stars one of Brad’s brothers … Brad being the hero in this year’s GH entry, the one that apparently STILL doesn’t have enough conflict.
Until then, I’m going to keep plugging away on “Operation Treat Writing Like a Day Job.” Right now, that seems to be enough to keep me writing, so why mess with success?
My instincts are right on track.
At least that’s the gist of the feedback from fellow NARWAn Kelly, the first person (besides myself) to read through the entire first draft of “Blind Date Bride.” All 330+ pages of it. (And it took her less than a week!) 😀
She loved the hero and heroine, Damien and Kari — always a good start. She found their best friends interesting, too (also good, because I always kind of envisioned giving them their own book.)
Her main suggestions for improvement: More sex (or at least thinking about sex), less eating; more explanation of the awful things Kari’s ex did to her to make her mistrust Damien at first; and a longer black moment — or at least one with more depth of despair.
I’d already been thinking I need to torture Kari and Damien a little more before I let them get back together … and I can see the other two points, as well.
It’s good to know I’m at least headed in the right direction. I can’t wait to get started on some revisions.
The plan is to start entering a few contests in preparation for next fall’s Golden Heart competition. (This is the story I’d wanted to enter last time, but didn’t think I’d have it finished. Turns out, I was right — but it’s going to be ready for the next one, doggone it … even if that does mean writing another synopsis.)
Since I launched “Operation Treat Writing Like a Day Job,” I’ve been productive … very productive … more productive than I was most of last year.
I wrote a couple thousand words on Meg & Matt’s story and sent out three more query letters.
There’s room for improvement, of course. I only logged a word count on four of the last seven days.
I’ll try to improve on that number this week. I also have some prep to do for our NARWA board meeting this Thursday.
I also need to start getting ready for my talk on dialogue at our next regular meeting. I’m a little worried about that — I know what good dialogue sounds like, but I’m not quite sure how to go about explaining it to other people.
I sense some research coming on! 😀
I started my new scene in “Blind Date Bride” last night after work and finished it this morning, as soon as I woke up. I didn’t even get out of bed — just hauled the laptop into bed with me and started banging away on the keys.
As Hannibal said in “The A-Team,” I love it when a plan comes together!
Now, it’s time for some printing and then passing my beloved first-born single-title novel off to one of my NARWA sisters …
These are both scary and exciting times, my friends.