After reading Jilly’s ambitious writing plan for the rest of the year and Nancy’s recent set of posts on creating and executing a writing plan, I’m starting to feel like I need to do a little planning of my own.
In all honesty, I’m also feeling a little envious.
While I spent a large swath of the past several months taking pretty pictures, studying Victorian literature, staring off into space, and turning myself into the economic impact analysis guru at my day job, many of the other Eight Ladies were busy putting words on the page.
Lots of words.
“I’m going to submit this manuscript to this year’s Golden Heart Contest” amounts of words.
That’s a lot of words.
Now that summer vacations are (mostly) over and school is back in session, it’s time for me to turn my gaze away from the lake outside my window and back to my unfinished manuscripts that have consistently refused to write themselves, even when I’ve left copious notes on how the scenes should progress.
In preparation for the re-girding of the writing loins (that sounds a little uncomfortable), I’ve done a little pre-work.
First up was to get my writing space established and ready to go. Although on the couch with my laptop has been my typical writing spot for quite some time, the comfort factor is outweighed by the proximity to distractions like the television, the kitchen, and the views outside. Fortunately, I have an actual office/library to write in. The chair is not nearly as comfortable, but the distractions are minimal and everything I need is within reach. As a plus, I recently replaced the ancient carpeting with rich hardwood and did some rearranging, so it’s cozy and inviting.
Next up was to take my story boards, scene-by-scene index cards, plot maps, and assorted other book notes and toss them in the recycling bin. Drastic? Perhaps, but my three manuscripts (Almost-there, Partially-there, and Barely-there) have all stalled for one reason or another. I’m hoping that wiping the slate clean and taking a fresh look at the characters and story drafts will help me brainstorm ideas for going forward. I’m also hoping it will lure the Girls in the Basement back to work. I’ve already had a few small ideas/revelations; fingers crossed that the ideas keep coming.
My last bit of pre-work was to stock up on necessary writing “supplies.” While for some that may mean wine or chocolate, for me it means a fully loaded Starbucks card and Krispy Kreme’s in the freezer, because I’m not above a little self-bribery to get those words on the page from time to time. Also included in my suppliers is the Journeyman Writer Eight-Class Bundle over at Storywonk.com for days when I need a little craft-element refresher or a change of perspective. Lastly, no writing supply toolkit is complete without a little writing inspiration. That’s right, I’m talking about Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Nothing like a little Slayer meets Vampire with conflict, attraction, and potential apocalypse to wake up those creative brain cells. When I’m not distracted by being entertained, it feels like a master class in storytelling. Each time I watch I learn a little something more.
All right; now that everything is in place it’s time to start writing. When distractions rear their ugly heads, I’ll combat them with the suggestions from Kay’s recent post on Getting Rid of Distractions – with Science, and the Hamilton Helpless video that Michaeline linked to in her Helplessly in Love post will be the perfect reward for those productive writing days.
So, how is everyone else doing so far? Still planning or busy writing?