Do you work on more than one story at a time?
Hey yeah writers. I have a question for you!
I’m big into compartmentalizing. I like doing one thing at a time and not starting on a new thing until I’m done with the last. I always read one book at a time. I eat all my potatoes, then all of my green beans, then all of my steak. When I had two finals on the same day I would be a mess because it meant that I would have to study for them simultaneously.
But for the first time maybe ever, I’m worked on three writing projects. One is converting a flash fiction piece from one point of view to another. One is a short story that I’ve been slaving away at for a couple months—I don’t think I’ve ever had such difficulty writing something before. The third is turning a not-so-short story into a novel (I might do FebNoWriMo with myself).
Do you guys like to juggle projects? Does it refresh you to be able to turn away from something you’re stuck on and move on to something else? Or does it confuse you? Any recommendations? I’d love if you’d share your opinion below.
For the nanowrimo editing ask, I'm a huge fan of creating outlines and, essentially, replanning the story right from the beginning. Before you delve too deeply into your work, it's helpful to assess which details you can remember most clearly so you can differentiate between main and side plots and also determine which scenes and characters may be disposable later in the editing process. Breaking it up into smaller acts and creating character profiles will also make things easier.
I’m definitely not usually an outliner (I like to know the beginning and the end, and the fun is getting myself from point A to point B), but I feel like with a longer piece my process should be 1. write a horrendous, all over the place draft 2. back away, reassess, write an outline 3. place the salvageable original content into said outline 4. flesh out the missing pieces. I don’t think I could make an outline before spitting out a first draft because actually writing that draft made me have to confront so many things about the story that I never would have thought to before I actually started writing. It also makes some aspects of the story and plot points come out more organically.
This in response to this question from last night.
All relevant answers are tagged editing.
Do you have any advice for revising/rewriting a novel? I’m fixing up my NaNoWriMo novel, but I have no clue where to start. The storyline, the characters, everything needs working on. It’s so overwhelming!
I’m actually having this problem too. I’m the type of writer who usually has to edit more for sentence structure than plot/characters, but obviously that changes when you’re dealing with a piece of writing as long as a NaNo. My story has huge chunks missing, continuity errors, questionable plot aspects that I haven’t finalized yet… all kinds of things that I feel like I need to address first before I even need to think about line editing.
If there are any yeah writers out there who have experienced editing longer form works, I’d love to hear what works for you—if you have a system, or an anecdote you’d be willing to share, or there’s something that really helped you when you were editing something—let us know by sending an ask!
This and all relevant answers will be tagged editing.
Reading things like “A word that means confidence but not confidence something more sauve, I’ll google it later.” in my rough draft. Perfect.
Hahaha I have things like “Name of place in Kansas that has lots of gas stations, Google Map l8r”. Hilarious.
There is a danger to copy-editing. You start to read in a different way. You start to see the sentence as machinery. You focus on the gears and levers that connect words to one another; you hunt for the wayward semicolon, the unintentionally ambiguous phrase, the clunky repeated word. You even hope they appear, so you can kill them. You see them when they’re not even there, because you relish slashing your pen across the paper. It gets a little twisted.
December is editing month…
NaNoWriMo is OVER! Did you win?
If you finished, share your novel title below!
What I Learned from My First NaNoWriMo
I did it, guys! I won my first NaNo! What’s even crazier is that I only worked on it 11 out of the 30 days this month. The longest hiatus was the 11 days I took while producing the lit mag; when I got back to working on NaNo 4 days ago, I was only at 23,332 words. It was quite a sprint to the finish line!
I looked at some other writers’ charts and they seemed much more on track than mine, perfect “Cingular: Raising the bar”, with even increases each day. Since I apparently am a writing weirdo, I thought maybe you guys might be interested in what I learned from my somewhat unique NaNo experience…
I DID IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Dude, the print copies of the mag came last night, YW passed 19,000 followers just now, and I finished my first NaNo. CHRISTMAS HAS COME EARLY.
Ah, but are you a good writer?…I’m afraid you will never know the answer to that one. No writer does. (Some writers think they do, but they are usually wrong.)
Aw yee wrote 12,033 NaNo words today
So now I’m at 35,365. Gotta write at least 3659 a day til Friday (woo MATH!). If I was still in school I’d be starting finals and probably would write at least that much per day in essays, soooo this is way better.
How’s everyone else doing? Anyone hit 43,333 today? Anyone DONE!?
I hate you High five!!
Aw shit I already asked 2 questions today damnit so we can’t have our nightly NaNo word count discush. Why does Tumblr even have that rule? Those rules aren’t real.
Yeah writers, it’s the last week of NaNo. And I am way behind.
I’m just over 26,000 words, which means I need to write 4678 words per day to finish on time.
I really think I can do it. I’ve already written 2456 words this morning (see exact likeness of me, above). But I’m getting a little nervous. I was so sure that I’d be able to knock it out of the park because I wrote like 10k words the first day, but then spent so much time on The YW Review, so I got behind. (Worth it though!)
I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s a little apprehensive about being able to finish, so I think we should all offer each other words of encouragement. Even those who are caught up and on track (43,333 words today) need people to drumroll them over the finish line.
What would you like to say to your fellow NaNoWriters as the month comes to a close?
Addendum as of 6:45pm: I wrote 10,000 more words today! So I’m at 33,422. GETTING THERE.
The Writing Box: 6 Ways to End Your Story
With NaNoWriMo now in its final week, I thought it would be a good time to talk about endings. Here are six common ending types:
- Resolved: All conflicts and story threads are tied up and concluded neatly. It’s satisfying for readers, and ususally denotes a singular book or the last in a series.