Tag Archives: work in progress


1 Jun

I’m feeling creative and optimistic, writing-wise. And I’m not sure why that is, since I’m also feeling really antsy about writing. I’ve been jumping between stories, and I feel like I should come up with some kind of  fun! summer! project to…well, you name it. More than anything, though, I’d like to take my work in progress and actually make progress (without seeming to put undue emphasis on the work). Because, you know, writing is just such a  fun! thing to do in the summer!

Of course it’s not summer! for a few weeks, so it’s okay that I haven’t come up with a project.

And of course another project is the last thing I need. I already have lots of projects. I just need to keep working on them. I just need to finish one of them. And that’s the time to ask myself: Am I having  fun! yet?

Write. Yes! Repeat.


Short Story Month: just what the novelist ordered

15 May

May is Short Story Month. (Because the Internet says so, that’s why.) I know, I know, that sounds like an excuse to avoid my novel-in-progress. Happy Short Story Month, everyone! My novel? Oh, well, you know, it’s a LONG story.

But a month (or a season, or a lifetime) of writing short stories could just as easily be exactly what my novel writing needs.

Complement rather than competition

Check it out, I’m so serious about this I just used a header. And look: bullet points!

  • I’ll be working on this novel for a very long time. Showing I can finish any story, whether from scratch or from the in-progress file, can only be good for my novel’s morale.
  • I’ll be working on this novel for a very long time. Having some stories to submit for publication in the meantime is also good for morale.
  • My novel sucks. But this story is pretty good. I especially like my way with plot/character development/setting/dialogue/whatever. Which gives me a great idea for the next chapter of the novel…
  • This story sucks. Especially the plot/character development/setting/dialogue/whatever. I’m just going to set this aside for a while and get back to the novel, where at least I kind of seem to know what I’m doing.
  • I don’t feel like writing. Well, maybe just that one great/weird/fun story that doesn’t feel like work. Hmm, why isn’t my novel great and fun? (The weird goes without saying.) It could be. It should be. What if I…
  • I don’t feel like writing. Well, maybe just that one great/weird/fun story that doesn’t feel like work. Yeah? Tough. Write x number of words on the novel. And when you’ve done your chore—and only then—you can go play with your little story.
Competition rather than complement

Interestingly (or not), the one area of my writing routine that has suffered during the first half of Short Story Month is my Twitter-length fiction. Lately when it comes to fiction no longer than 140 characters, I got nothing.

I guess that makes sense. After all, this month my motto is Short stories: expect big things.

Day 65 of 365+

6 Mar

Hmm, maybe I should’ve also resolved to update my blog in 2011. My plan to work on my novel-in-progress every single day in 2011 has been a success… though at my current slow and steady “successful” rate it’s going to take more than the 300 days that remain of 2011 to finish the thing.

You say you want a resolution

2 Jan

No, really, I mean it this time. In 2011 I’m putting the progress in the novel-in-progress. My resolution is twofold but very simple:

  1. I will work on the novel every day (until the novel stops needing work).
  2. I can work on any part of the novel in any way on any day, but (until I have a complete manuscript draft) I must (also) continue from the point I left off the day before.

You wouldn’t know it by my intermittent updates, but this is actually a very enjoyable project. The thing is, it’s much easier to remember that if it stays fresh in my mind. Today makes day two: so far so fun.


21 Dec

I feel like I’ve been writing up a storm for a while now. No, wait, those were actual storms. Good thing I have a lot of fondness for a lot of snow. And, lately, for a lot of writing. See me blog.

Without officially or exactly participating in NaNoWriMo last month, I did dedicate the month of November to producing a craptacular mass of novel manuscript. With anything longer than flash fiction, I make handwritten revisions on printed (and literally cut and pasted and post-it-ed) drafts, repeating as necessary. (I do try to be ecofriendly about it and print these drafts on the back of previously used paper.) So now I’ve got a binder full of crappy pre-novel to lug around with me, and for now at least that makes me very happy. For one thing, I’ve worked on the first several pages enough to feel that they at least are no longer crap.

And for another thing, writing, like life itself, is the journey, and it is a good feeling to have this binder full of paper to haul around. The extra weight really adds to my sense of accomplishment (as well as the degree of difficulty) every time I walk a mile in deep snow.

warming up

8 Sep

Well, I’ve already failed the riding portion of my personal 30 Days of Biking challenge. But that’s no reason not to continue the writing aspect of it. I mean, this just adds an extra layer of fiction to my fiction, right? (And for the record, I am getting plenty of exercise in other forms, so I don’t even have to feel bad about not biking quite every day.) Turns out, a little flash fiction is a really fun way to start my writing day. I appreciate (and/or need) the daily reminder that, oh yeah, I do this because I like it.

cannibalism & plastic surgery

1 Sep

Twitter: it’s not just for cannibalism anymore.  I’ve also been writing lots of little stories about plastic surgery.  You know what that means!  More veggies! 

It’s September, which means I’ve got two writing projects going: a novel, and 30+ flash fictions for “30 Days of Biking.”  Today I made progress on both projects, despite a total lack of cannibalism and plastic surgery.  (So far.)

Day 1 (1 bike ride) flash stories:

At Point A she’s the pest a tourist will Photoshop from a shot of Nice Ride bikes.  An exterminator van waits at Point B.

My head swells in its helmet.  The bike rider just ahead of me is bareheaded.  There are fractured skulls (ha ha!) tattooed on the backs of his arms.  I smile at them while we wait at the intersection.  When the green light comes, it hits me like kryptonite:  Ouch!  Between triceps and self-righteousness, I’ve got weak spots where a helmet is no help at all.