Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Day 2 of my schedule... and I'm staying on track!


So, this is a photo of me, pretending to write!

I'm posting it because maybe by looking at it I'd remember I am a writer and actually, you know, do some writing. (A bit like people who are trying to lose weight putting a photo of themselves at their ideal weight on the fridge door!)

It's not like I don't have anything to write - I've got a pile of stuff I can do.
  • I have a novel is waiting to be read through and completely re-written in a slightly different voice (don't ask!)
  • I want to re-write my first ever novel (well, actually, I want to take the characters and setting, but completely change the story.)
  • I woke up in the middle of the night a couple of weeks ago with a great first line, which is now scribbled on the back on an envelope waiting for me to do something with it!
  • I've also got a marketing idea for Cat and The Dreamer that I need to get on to, as well, for those days when writing seems far too hard

See, lots to do. And what am I actually doing...
  • Watching Homes Under the Hammer
  • Considering doing the ironing
  • Breathing after taking part in the A-Z Challenge and the First Loves Blogfest

Yesterday, however, I submitted an entry to the Bridport Prize, so I haven't been completely useless. And I'd actually like to research a few more competitions, because I have several short stories that I'd love to get out. (I find searching for magazines - real or online - is hard work, so I tend to avoid doing that, even though that's how I got my first stories published. Note to self: submit to magazines again.)

If anyone has some motivational tips to share with me, I'll gladly receive them! I'm in need of having a butt-kicking to get myself into gear.

47 comments:

  1. Ha, taking a photo of yourself pretending to write is a really good idea! I hope it works out for you!

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    1. Actually, my son took it for a different reason, but it fitted this post, so I nabbed it!

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  2. It seems to me that you're flitting between one thing and another. But I'm super-organized. What I do is to settle on one project--say your re-writing project. I work on that until I get strung out, then revert to one of the lesser projects--say one of the small writing competitions. With a big target to focus on, I find I work, eat and even dream my way through.

    One thing I've learned: we're all different. But perhaps my method would be suitable for you.

    http://francene-wordstitcher.blogspot.com/

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    1. I know the one to stick with is the novel that's already written - before the A-Z I was flying through it. April seemed like the perfect break, but getting back to it has proven harder than I thought. I suppose 'Just do it' is the key to this!

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  3. You want suggestions? Apart from making a list - the one on this blog will do nicely - I'd say turn off the cr*p TV programmes. Oh yes, and if you get any good ideas, share them with me - please!

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    1. Lol - you're right - that TV really shouldn't be on! ... Sorted :-)

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  4. I think we are all burnt out after the challenge. I'm forcing word count the last few days due to deadline, and it isn't pretty. Not only do I need to find motivation, I need to find my muse. If you see him stop by, please send him back to me. :) Good luck!

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    1. I'm blaming the challenge, but it's the 16th already, so I'm not sure I can hide behind that anymore. It took a lot out of me though. I hope you meet your deadline.

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  5. I like this idea! It might help me get out of my writing slump right now. I have a novel coming out soon but am trying to write the first draft of my next and getting blocked every which way I turn. Very frustrating! Do you think it's spring?

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    1. I blame every change of season lol! Perhaps the problem is the season keeps reverting back to winter?

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  6. I think I need to follow in suit. Take a picture to convince myself even though the writing isn't flowing, the ideas are and I am still a writer. The stress of life can truly take it over, can't it!

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    1. When you're trying to get into the heads of characters - with their motivations and problems - it's hard when your own problems get in the way! I read a blog post about meditation today, I might give that a go.

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  7. Ha! I hear you. I have two novels I should be querying relentlessly but haven't sent out any new querries in months. I also have a sequel I should get started on and I'm about 25 pages into a new work in progress that is taking me forever to pound out.

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    1. Ah, you definitely need to query!! That's the whole point of everything else we do. I've just submitted a story to a comp (another one, 2 in 2 days!), so now it's your turn!

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  8. Usually my self buttkickings come in the form of deadlines :/ Or days when my options are chores or do something productive.

    But I also love writing in public, because of the off chance someone my look at my screen I tend to write with less distractions.

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    1. I sometimes take my writing outside, but I get easily distracted by the pouring rain :-)

      And deadlines are something that's missing at the moment - perhaps I should impose some on myself. Outlook is good for that kind of thing...

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  9. If I did, I'd be using them on myself! lol...though honestly making a list helps me somewhat. Writing a 'to do' down and then scratching it off makes me feel accomplished.

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    1. I do have a task list set up on Outlook, but - ssshh - I don't set dates!

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  10. I have a deadline for my manuscript - 2nd draft done by the end of the summer. It's a real deadline for a conference so that's helping. Plus, I think I'm going to do Camp NaNo in June which will also help with that.

    Ironing might actually be good - I find stuff like that (folding laundry, washing dishes) sometimes helps my mind relax and renew itself. :)

    Hang in there! You'll find your way through.

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    1. I find the hoovering oddly relaxing too - I have a dog and a cat, so there's plenty of that to do! It's funny, I gave that 'relax your mind' advice to someone else - I really should be able to take it myself.

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  11. Good luck with the goals and Bridport. i have a soft spot for Homes under the Hammer too. I have actually got back to my WIP after months of doing other stuff. I'm elated.

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    1. Well done on getting back to it. You know when you've watched too much Homes Under the Hammer when you recognise the houses they're repeating! I've got to that stage, so time to move to my next obsession...

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  12. Maybe I should post a pic of me writing by my bed so when I wake up, I think "Yes. That is what I'll do today!"

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    1. Great idea! Or better still, the laptop by the bed, so you can just start straight away? :-)

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  13. Hi Annalisa ... good for you if you can create that way - I just seem to get inspiration everywhere ... could do with losing some!! It's settling back in - isn't it .. good luck - cheers Hilary

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    1. Pass any spare inspiration over this way... I'm in need. Although, to be fair, it's working through the kinks of the plot that I'm struggling with - I know what I want to happen in one story, I just can't quite make it.

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  14. The best advice I can give you is to focus on one project and break it up into tiny chunks and don't let the day go by until you address one chunk, just one. If barreling toward completion is what you're after.

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  15. Do you know about Duotrope Digest? It makes looking for publications & submitting easy.

    Maybe you're looking for a bit of a break? That's usually when I start dragging my feet some. But I usually continue with at least one project, doing the minimal so I stay on track.

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    1. Yes, I've used Duotrope Digest, it's a great site.

      April was my break, May was supposed to be back on it with vengence - but I think I underestimated the impact the challenge would have! I've seen lots of people recently taking elongated breaks from their blog, but I love mine too much to want to do that just yet.

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  16. Oh, I've been in that place often. When I strictly wrote short stories and articles I easily floated from one piece to another and when I wasn't writing I was marketing. Now that I'm working on novels, I often feel overwhelmed. Like you, I have multiple projects I could (and should) be working on. But at the moment I can't seem to focus on any of them. During those periods I try not to sweat it. I think it's part of the creative process. I usually take the time to read, read, read like crazy and after about a week I'm ready to write again.
    Good luck with the contest(s)!

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    1. Thanks Ruth. I should try reading - I didn't think of that, d'oh!

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  17. Right now, I'm frustrated with lack of time to write -- between the day job and the various elements of real life at home. But I understand myself well enough to know that when school ends and summer vacation finally arrives, I will waste all that increased time unless I do something drastic.

    Like make a schedule.
    Preferably a schedule that deprives me of writing time, because apparently that motivates me!

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    1. It's amazing how much more you can get done when you've got less time - it really focuses you!

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  18. Does this mean you are ready for another blogfest? Kidding!
    Here's some motivation for that first story you'd like to completely rewrite - I once did the same thing. It became my first published book.
    Now, go get 'em!

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    1. Lol - nooooo!!

      Your experience is certainly motivating though!

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  19. Can't help you. At least you are pretending to write and look serious about it. I'm flat out on the patio, just looking at our backyard. In my brain I pretend I'm gathering thoughts for a poem, but truly I'm farting around. Good luck on your endeavors.

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    1. There's nothing wrong with finding inspiration in the great outdoors... or the garden :-)

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  20. I think sometimes we are more productive than we give ourselves credit. I also like to think that my away from writing time helps me build up to the desire to get cracking. It's actually true for me, though of course there is a fine line between that and procrastination. I am ready to write a magazine article query and also to get back into writing the sequel to The Christmas Village. I don't have motivational advice, as with me, I just have to be ready. I do like your picture and think it proves you are a fine actress in addition to being a fine writer :)

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    1. I know... it really looks like I'm writing, doesn't it?

      Thanks for your support. I'm pretty sure I haven't slid into procrastination yet, but I'm looking out for the signs :-)

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  21. I'm really a terrible person to ask, because when I feel the need to procrastinate, I stop writing until I feel like I can't breathe until I've written something down. Then I write.

    Let those new ideas/rewriting thoughts stew for a bit. ;-)

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    1. Yeah, that sounds a bit like me. I just wish it wasn't, especially when you read about 'proper' writers who force themselves to write something every day.

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  22. I can't help as I'm not getting much actual writing done at the moment. I'm doing writing related stuff, but not producing anything new.

    Must buck up.

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    1. It's easy for the 'other stuff' to get in the way of the actual creating, isn't it?

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  23. Hey girl! I've got a couple of award for you over at my place! Come and get 'em!!!

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  24. Agh, I did that "great line in the middle of the night" thing a few months ago, and scribbled it in the dark. In the morning, I looked at it and it was illegible! Gah!

    Love your blog! New Follower!

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    1. Hi Carissa, thanks for following.

      I've perfected writing in the dark - I even follow straight lines :-)

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Please comment - I love a good chat!