Writer’s Boot Camp Day 21

It’s 9:30 pm and I’m just getting started. If this trend of working later and later continues I am going to fail this challenge in a few days.    I worked my day job until 8, then did some dishes, litter boxes, vacuumed and trash. I’m not going to lie, I also hung out with Paul for a few minutes and played a stupid video game for about 15 minutes.  I feel a little guilty about the video game.

I really don’t think I’m ever going to be good at time management.  I have the same number of hours everyone else does, and yet I get so much less done.  I try to be disciplined but I always end up wondering where the time went. Oh well.

The theme today is delayed gratification, a reminder that writing is a long game. A single short story can take a few weeks from start to finish,  a novel takes months or years. Most things I write will be read by 4 or 5 people tops and not for a while after I write it. Someday if I keep working at it a few more might read my work.  A reply from a publisher about a submission can take 4 or 5 months, which is its own hell. Nothing happens fast in writing. This is hard for me, because I’m sort of a task endorphin junkie. I keep my little lists and check things off all day because it feels good to do the things.  I get one check mark for writing if I work 30 minutes or if I work 3 hours, so there isn’t a whole bunch of reward for more writing at least not right away. But at only 30 minutes a day, each project takes so much longer, slowing down the reward even more.

The author suggests making a list of rewards.  Small rewards for writing 3 hours without checking email or social media.  3 hours! That is a lot for me, I tend to manage about an hour at a time before I get distracted.  Possible rewards are a 15-minute walk, an iced coffee, watching a t.v show, coloring or a cookie. Those are not 3-hour rewards.  How about we split the difference and say 2 hours?

2-hour rewards

  • Going to a coffee shop or bar to get a drink with a friend.  Or dinner.
  • Watching an episode of a TV show I like
  • Going a craft store or something similar
  • Knitting for 30 minutes
  • Buying myself a small present online ($30 or less)
  • Go to a movie

If any of my local friends are reading this feel free to bribe me with a coffee, bar or dinner date. You don’t even have to pay, just text me and be like “hey, write for 2 hours straight and then we will hang out, and I’ll tell you that you are smart, talent and amazing”.  It will totally work.  I didn’t go to karoke tonight because I needed to write. 🙁

There are also big rewards for meeting your daily goals for 2 weeks.  I’ve met my daily goal for over two weeks! I deserve a prize! Her 2-week rewards are not in reasonable scope with each other or with the smaller rewards.  I feel like the 2-week rewards should be 10 times as awesome as the smaller rewards. She has stuff like buy a new journal or go to a movie. Go to a movie makes sense on the first list, I’m going to add that up there now.  

2-week rewards

  • A day at the beach
  • A day out of town vacationing any place
  • A fancy dinner at a favorite restaurant
  • Shopping for a  new outfit really nice outfit
  • Ordering one of those monthly present boxes for myself (I had a yarn box and sticker box as gifts and that was neat, I’ve been wanting to do one of these, but I should probably wait until after I move)
  • A whole day off,  to binge watch tv and eat perogies

The author has the theory that we get caught in a cycle where we don’t have the energy to start writing. That we do something easier like play with our phones or watch TV and that wastes time and then we are too tired to work.   I would change “energy” to something else because I don’t think it is completely about if you are tired or not. I think it is something more, like “mana” or “will” or “chi” but not any of those either, because they all sound a little silly. Maybe “passion” or “drive”, or even “confidence”?  I don’t know, but it’s bigger than energy because you get that back by eating a healthy dinner, drinking enough water and getting a good night’s sleep. But the thing that I lack that keeps me doing pointless time wasting shit is more than that, its a mix of sadness, apathy, self-destruction, shame and a lot of other stuff.

This morning I wasted time doing stupid shit or doing the important things I should do but too slowly.  I did 15 minutes of exercise, ate breakfast, drank water, took morning meds, checked my planner, made a doctor’s appointment, put in a load of laundry, researched who I should vote for today and took a shower.   That should have taken maybe 1.5 hours. It took 3. Somehow in there, I wasted 1.5 hours. If I wasn’t currently doing this challenge and committed to finishing I would not be writing now. That missing 1.5 hours would have been enough to beat down my self-esteem into not doing any writing tonight.  In fact, it almost was, I feel so behind on everything that I really wanted to keep cleaning tonight and get a little caught up with that, but then I really would have been physically tired and probably gone to bed feeling like a big failure.

The author of the book thinks a few days of making ourselves write will break this cycle and we can keep going, the more you do it the easier it gets.  A week ago I would have agreed. Today, no. I don’t feel like this has gotten any easier to make myself do,  I’m not that proud of myself and I still feel a bit silly. I don’t think this has energized me…but who knows?

The exercise for today is to look back at some of my free writing from the last few weeks and see if anything jumps out.  I haven’t done a lot in my actual “free writing” doc, but I’ll give it a look.

There was a sentence there that might be a useful starting point for a science-based poem about suffocation.  And I had an idea to write down on the idea page.

I also had the idea to take a book, magazine or collection of short stories up to my room to read in the mornings instead of my phone.

I worked a poem about time travel for a few minutes.   It’s 11 PM now, I have to go to bed because I have PT in the morning.

Total writing time today 1 hour 19 minutes.

Writer’s Boot Camp Day 19

I’m just getting started at 9:20 pm.   I was out shopping and spending time with friends, and then the handle on my front door broke and I had to fix that.  I just finished getting everything set up for starting work tomorrow, which is all super confusing.   I told them I had doctor’s appointment’s and asked if I could start on Tuesday, but no one replied.   I am taking a 2$ an hour pay cut and I don’t actually have any idea at all what my new position entails.  My writing is going to suffer because of going back to work.  I know in a day or two I’ll be happy to be working again,  but right now it feels like one more thing in the way of me ever doing something important. I guess it’s just end of vacation crankiness along with the illusion that anything anyone does is actually important.   

Here is a picture of a cute cupcake I made for my friend last night, for his birthday.  

I’m not feeling at all inspired to write tonight.  My tummy hurts and I feel sad. Not sad about any specific thing, just sad.  Sad to be going back to work, sad that I feel stressed and busy, sad that I have a doctor’s appointment tomorrow that I might get in trouble for going to,  sad that my diet isn’t going great. I’m prone to feeling sad, especially after spending a lot of time being social. This weekend has been a whole lot of face time with a whole lot of people.  

It’s odd.  I’m fucking delightful.  Everyone says so, They say I’m funny, smart and nice. I’m often told that I’m entertaining to be around, a “people person” or the “life of the party”. But I’m not. I might look like a super fun cute, awesome person, but keeping that up as many hours as I did this weekend has a cost. I’m emotionally exhausted right now. I have so much fun with people at the moment, but afterwards, I just want to curl up in a ball and cry.  It’s like I burn out all my joy and leave myself empty and charred.

Which conveniently leads into the topic of today’s advice, “join your comrades”.   It’s all about the benefit of working with other people on projects or just having a support who are doing something similar to myself.  I’m supposed to join a writer’s group on meetup or maybe sign up for some workshops. I’m going to post on facebook and see if any of my friends want to get together for a weekly or even monthly writer’s event.  

A community is very helpful to stay motivated and accountable.  We are social animals regardless of how much my brain chemicals and tummy disagree with that right now.   I need a pack, a tribe. When I have worked with other writers in the past I’ve done better work in less time than I do when working alone.   For me, it’s about not wanting to disappoint anyone or hold back other people by being lazy. 

Having something like that again could be helpful to my work ethic and help me be a better writer.  I could learn from others who are more experienced or who have done things I haven’t.  Maybe if I join a writing group I could learn more about getting an agent, or writing successful queries. I could learn better networking skills and get tips on good books to read or workshops to go to.

I’m going to try to work on speculative poetry, but I feel like the only poem that I could write currently would be something like

Beige

Bland, so bland.  

almond, eggshell, off-white, linen

76 degrees

Toast is meant to stand alone, fuck your avocado hipster bullshit

cream, ivory, oatmeal, taupe

easy listening

the only thing you should hear is Yanni

Bone, cotton, alabaster, porcelain

Unsweet iced tea please,

Thank you

 

Hey, that was decent poetry.  Boring, yet topical.

I finished the first draft of a poem, “Calling Ahead” for submission later this week.  Posted on Facebook about starting a writer’s meetup.  

Total writing time today is 1 hour and 27 minutes 

Writer’s Boot Camp Day 18

It’s Saturday,  and I don’t want to do this.  Like, not even a little.

So far today I have dropped stuff off at the storage building,  gone to the arts/crafts store and the grocery store. I’ve made 60 cupcakes in 3 types (one type gluten free) and made two types of buttercream frosting.  I have a super soft birthday party to be to in 2 hours, and I need to shower and get dressed. I am annoyed about doing this.

So very, very annoyed.

But, I’m doing it.  I guess.

Today the book talks about getting good at doing the small stuff.  In specific things like checking markets, using a submission tracker makes sure you type up your handwritten notes and keeping good notes and to-do lists.   I actually do ok at most of this, I don’t do the searching markets as often as I should, but when I do it’s well organized.  

I learned years ago that the time spent keeping a planner, keeping lists and notes is way less than the time you waste trying to figure out what the fuck you are supposed to be doing.   

Speaking of what I’m doing,  I just found out yesterday that my new job starts on Monday,  That is going to make doing this pretty damn hard. Oh well, I guess I’ll figure it out.  I need the money so I’ll make it work.

I’ll try to work on the poetry some more, but I’m not feeling much in a poetry mood.   

I got a little more done on one of the poems I’m working on.  I think I’ll have one of them finished tomorrow. Hopefully, I’ll have at least 2 before the 27th to submit.  

Totally writing time today is 42 minutes,  that is sort of sad.  

Writer’s Boot Camp Day 17

Today’s advice was to not beat myself up about having bad days, just to try to do better next time.  That’s good advice, but hard. My default state is to feel like I’m failing at pretty much everything and to always belittle my own accomplishments.  Which sometimes makes me feel like if nothing I do is ever good enough then why do anything. Which of course leads to me not doing anything, and giving up on goals.  

So far I’ve kept with this one, doing something every day, and yet, every day I feel like I’m failing.  It doesn’t even make sense! Yesterday my timer said I worked 2 hours but I didn’t “write” anything other than the blog post.  This made me feel like I hadn’t really done the challenge.  I was spending time finding markets. Which is actually important and harder.  This morning my brain is saying “well, that was wasted time, it’s not like you are going to submit anything, and if you do it’s not like anyone will ever buy it”.  My brain is very mean to me. It speaks in the voices of all the people who have abused, criticized and rejected me. I have honestly had a pretty shitty life in some way, lots of shitty people in my life. I try not to think about it.  I’m getting off topic. We can call that “free writing”. 🙂

Since I don’t have any exercises in the book today I’m going focus on the calls and work in 30-minute chunks today,  as many as I can manage, which might be one.

First order of business was to put all the writing calls I found yesterday in order by day, pick the one with the soonest deadline and get started.  

The first one is to write up to 4 pieces of speculative poetry, the deadline is May 27th.   I started a poem about aliens a few days ago, maybe it will be useful for this project.  

I worked on the first alien poem for a little while, but then I had a better idea and worked on that.  He is a trippy image as a clue!

Total writing time today is 2 hours and 2 minutes 

Writer’s Boot Camp Day 16

Today is all about figuring out my weak spots as a writer.  

The timeline given has 7 sections to think about:   

  1. Ideas- I’m pretty darn good at this.  I’m imaginative and creative.
  2. Rough Draft- no problems here generally,  sometimes I’m lazy or spend too much time in research, but the storytelling part is easy and comes naturally for me.  I like making shit up.
  3. First review- I enjoy the first reading of my work, while it’s still new.  I like making little changes, moving things around, tinkering with the characters.  This part sometimes makes me feel a little sad because I think “wow, you write like a little kid” but other times I love reading my own work.  I feel proud the first time I read through and edit a short story. Novels are different, I apparently refuse to read my novel, and the rough draft has been done 4 years!
  4. Second/Third/Fourth drafts –  I start getting a little bored, but I can do it.  I might have to take a day or two off from a project and work on something else, but I got this.  
  5. Proofreading and polishing – here things start to fall apart.   I don’t feel like I have the skill sets and tools to even try proofreading my own work.  Many of my projects dead stop right here.
  6. Sending out work – I have 12 “finished” but unpublished stories,  I have 18 “works in progress”. I have 0 places I plan to send them.  0, nada, none, zilch. I have a page on which to write deadlines, but it is blank.  I have a list of markets I should look into, but I never get around to it. I do have one piece that is scheduled for publication in September, so I do sometimes submit, but not often.  
  7. Dealing with rejection and resubmitting – Yeah, not so much.  I just cry.

That’s pretty clear.  I don’t find places to submit, so I never have to finish proofreading and then submit.  I don’t like rejection so I avoid it. Clearly, this is where I need to be focusing my attention.  It seems a little counterintuitive, but maybe for the next little while I should stop writing for this Writer’s Boot Camp and start spending the time searching markets.  That thought makes me feel a little sick.

Looking for calls and markets takes so much time, and so much reading and effort.  And once I find a place I almost always want to start a new story. I never feel like any of the ones I already have done will work.  This could be a stalling technique.

I guess I need to start adding “look for markets/submitting” to my daily tasks.  This seriously might be where I give up on this whole thing. This doesn’t sound fun at all anymore.

I’ve only been working on this half an hour and I feel emotionally drained, about to cry just thinking about it.  I’m going to feed the cats, take a break and then come back to this and start looking for story calls. Ick.

I found 12 possible magazines and anthologies to submit to in the next few months and put all the info in a spreadsheet.  

Aside from this blog post, I haven’t done any actual writing today and I’m not going to.  I just spend 1.5 hours reading calls and submission guidelines, that is enough for one day.  

Tomorrow I will put them in order by deadline date.  Then I’ll find something I already have finished and polish it up to submit or I’ll write something new to submit, but I’m doing these one at a time, trying to complete as many as possible.

Work time today was 2 hours

Writer’s Boot Camp Day 15

It’s almost 4 pm and I’m just now starting on this.  It’s all because of physical therapy. Anything that changes my routine can really throw me off.  I got up early, drove in Atlanta “oh God!  Water is falling out of the sky! What do we do?!?” traffic, and then did an hour of hard exercises.  Then drove home. I got home at 12:30 pm and I should have gotten to work then, but I changed clothes, did some of my morning tasks and took a nap.  Sorry! I didn’t mean to, but I guess I was really tired.

I was dreaming, that I was showing Dean from Supernatural a thing I had made, a health monitoring suit.  And he was telling me how we had to stop Dio (“Holy Diver” Dio) from getting enough red gold to build a throne for Satan. I was going to help him, but first, we were going to eat  Campbell’s chicken noodle soup.

Anyway, I’m awake now and ready to work.  

The book doesn’t have any exercise today,  it’s just about making sure you have enough snacks.  I normally work at home so that generally isn’t a problem.  But I’ll remember this sage advice for any time I’m out in the world.  

I guess I need to just write now.  Maybe do a few of those “obstacles” from yesterday?  I’m not that far into the new story I started, the mystery and it is really hard for me.  The main character isn’t someone I can identify with, we have very little in common which makes him very hard to write.  Also, mystery, or at least this sort of real-world rules crime story is hard, because I’m not a cop or a lawyer. I’m having to stop and research things all the time.  The worst part is that it’s set in the 1960s, so info is hard to get.

Today, I want to give up.  I honestly don’t know why I’m doing this.  I feel sort of silly working this hard, because I have very little to show for it so far and because I’m feeling like I suck.  Like I’m never going to be a very good writer no matter what I do, because of a learning disability I have. Unless I can pay someone to do tons of editing to fix the fucked up ways I write, and I don’t have much money. I’m feeling sort of isolated. Maybe I need to make friends with more writer’s. Or maybe I just need more friends.

I guess we can count that last paragraph as 5 minutes of writing down hurdles.  The fact that I am very smart, well read and creative, but have the sentence structure and punctuation of a 3rd grader is certainly a ‘hurdle”. Or the sentence structure of Hemingway, depending on how you look at it.  That bro was all about the run on sentences and weird punctuation.

I’m going to pull out one of the cards and do whatever it says now.  

60 minutes – I started a short story using a list of words on the card,  Working title “Curse at the Opera”

After that, I took about a 2-hour break.  I’m just not an awesome motivated person today.  But I’m back.

5 minutes of free writing

10 minutes putting some notes and to-dos in my writing notebook, mostly from a podcast I listened to earlier and updating my worklog.  

20 more minutes on “Curse at the Opera”

10 minutes editing “Eat the Rich”

Total writing time 2 hours 55 minutes

Writer’s Boot Camp Day 14

I’m pretty surprised I’ve gotten this far.  I have written at least an hour every day for the last 2 weeks.  I don’t know if I have ever done that before, maybe back when I did NaNo in 2013 or 2014.   One of my self-definitions is that I lack discipline, but maybe it’s time to change that label because I’ve not only done this but I’ve also been dieting for a last 3 weeks and lost about 8lbs.  I still have about 10 lb to lose to get back to my pre-leg breaking weight. Weighing less and continuing physical therapy will hopefully get me off using a cane in the next few months. Hey, there is another thing where I’m pretty damn disciplined,  I’ve done P.T at least once a day almost every day for a year, many days I manage twice. I also got my first yes.fit medal this week for finishing a 22 mile race, sadly it took 10 months because when I started it last July I could only walk about half a mile a day.

On to today’s assignments, which are called the “obstacle course”.  Looks like I’m going to be working on lots projects today and timing them.  Might be hard to get into a groove, but we’ll see.

10 minutes on the mystery story I started last week.  

5-minute sprint, also on the mystery story

So it turns out the timer I’m using only beeps when I’m on that web page because my stopwatch says 50 minutes right now.  So I did way more than 5 minutes on the mystery story sprint. I’m going to pause for a minute and go find an egg timer or something. Well, never mind, I don’t appear to have an egg timer, odd I just figured that was something everyone had.  I mean, yeah, I never bought one….but you know seemed like something that would just be there…I’ll put the timer up on my other screen, I don’t know why I didn’t think of that before.

5 minutes of free writing

Made some notes about the free writing in my notebook for later

5 minutes of “weightlifting” – worked on the outline for the mystery story

5 minutes of “hurdles” I face today,  that was pretty cathartic, I like to whine.

10 minutes of cross-training (working on something that isn’t writing, but keeping a notebook nearby to write down thoughts) – I paused my stopwatch for this.  I took my afternoon vitamins, had some soup and listened to part of a short story on “Starship Sofa” about living under the authority of Grays (classic bigged headed, flying saucer, mutilate cows and put things up your butt aliens). I didn’t have any thoughts that I wanted to write down.

10 minutes of meditative writing (I wrote a short poem about aliens, but not about them putting things up my butt)

10 minutes of reflection on the obstacle course exercises

This was a little odd.  I’m used to focusing on one project for as long as I possibly can before my brain starts to feel squishy.  I sort of power through the scenes, even when that isn’t what I really want to be working on. This was better in that I moved around, mentally.   I had lots of thoughts and ideas. But on the other hand, I didn’t get much usable material. I only have about 4 paragraphs on the mystery story, a few ideas jotted down in my notebook and part of a rather poorly written poem.  But I might be every more drained than normal. It’s only been about 1.5 hours and I feel like I have been at this all day!

I think maybe this book will help me find my own best ritual for writing, maybe a few of those 5 or 10 minutes things before focusing on my main WIP would be a nice mix for me.

Total time today 1 hour 47 minutes

 

Writer’s Boot Camp Day 12

Today’s theme is endurance but also picking what you want to put your energy into.

I feel this contradicts with yesterday’s advice about being busy and doing lots of things between writing.  Today the book is saying to give up or pull back time on things that wouldn’t have catastrophic consequences.  So which is it?  Have a balanced life that is super busy because of writing or change your priorities letting somethings slide and use that time for writing.

I finished writing my WIP yesterday.  I will grant you that 11 days to finish one short story is a little long.  I have finished short stories in a day before.  However, that was a long time again,  in the last year I have finished maybe 2?  So one in 11 days isn’t bad.  I feel like I have been writing all the time some days, which adds to feeling like 11 days is too long, but I need to remember that I’ve spent most of the “writing” time doing these blog posts, reading, and researching.

I’m going to type this up when I get home. I’m in a car now, going to the mall to hang out with one of my friends for lunch and some shopping.  Shopping is a weakness of mine, it makes me feel good. I got a Pinkie Pie glitter mud mask and the best Tokidoki unicorn today, the perfect one I that I have been hoping to get for my new house! Yay!.   After I get this typed up I’m going to edit “Eat the Rich” and maybe start on story #2.  I guess the mystery story I started working on a few days ago.

I’m home now, obviously, since this is typed. I spent about 10 minutes emailing and texting friends, relationship maintenance, and then cleaned for 30 minutes, because the litter boxes were gross.  Full disclosure, I took a few muscle relaxers because my leg is hurting and my back is feeling tight.  So maybe I should work on literary fiction because I’m about to be “artistic” if you know what I mean.   😀

I guess up until this point I was about 45 minutes in.  I worked for 30 minutes on editing and actually fell asleep at my desk, how amazingly authentic!

I finished editing the story and then emailed it to a friend to read over.  This feels like progress.

Total writing time today was  about 2.5 hours. I am now going to spend the rest of my Sunday drinking pink alcohol and binge-watching netflix. 

 

 

Writer’s Boot Camp Day 11

The theme of the day is “cross training’  but not working on another project, but more balancing writing with the other parts of life. The idea is that with all the extra writing I’m doing that all of my other tasks would have fallen behind,  but thankfully I started this project while I’m currently not working, so I have about 8 hours a day of “extra time’ and I’m only using about 3 or 4 a day tops on writing.   Some tasks have fallen behind, because I’ve added in other things in my downtime, like doctor’s appointments, working on my side job, listening to more podcasts, dieting and going to the gym more.  Yesterday I did almost nothing productive other than doctor’s appointments, driving, and writing.

I was looking at houses and I have officially started the moving process today by getting a storage locker. This makes me a little happy and excited, but also super sad.  I really don’t want to leave my home. Moving is going to be stressful and take a lot of work and time, which oddly enough something the book feels I need at this point.

The phrase “If you need something done, give it to a busy man” is used by the author.  And I know from experience that super busy Kitty is a more productive Kitty. My last year of college (in Macon, GA) I was taking more than a full load of classes, working 20 hours a week at Barnes and Noble cafe,  I lived in Monticello 45 minutes away from work and school, went to the gym 5 days a week and I was dating someone who lived on the Northside of Atlanta. I don’t know how I did it, but I got everything done. It was weird how much stuff I could fit into one day,  granted I was sometimes up until 2 am, doing homework when I knew the alarm was going off at 6:30 a.m. I was sleep deprived and probably took too many stimulants, but I sure was productive.

I’ve tried to be that productive since then and it never works.  And I think the reason is there are no actual consequences and/or no one else cares. In college, if I missed classes or didn’t study I would fail the class,  wasting time and money if I had to retake something. So I worked my ass off because I didn’t want to retake anything. If I lost my coffee shop job we would have been in serious trouble for money, because we were just barely getting by. I probably should have given up the Atlanta boyfriend, but at the time that seemed important too.  But almost nothing I do now is that import, take this project for example If I just stop working on writer’s boot camp right now nothing bad will happen. If I don’t read the books on my reading list nothing bad happens. I seldom have guests over so my house doesn’t need to be that clean. I’m stressing a little about not having a paying job right now, but I have money saved so I’m not super worried.    

I literally could just feed my cats, clean litter boxes, take out the trash a few times a week, feed myself, take my meds and shower sometimes and nothing bad would happen.  I only have about 1 hour of things I “need” to do in any given day. That will all change in about a month when I have to start moving seriously, knowing I have a deadline, and maybe at that time I’ll get more productive in everything?  

I keep a Daily Task Tracker now with lots of tasks on it.  I very seldom finish it any given day, but I normally do at least the first half.  The process is that I get up in the morning and I just start doing these things in order and most days I do ok, but there isn’t any real urgency about it.    I think the book wants me to sort of alternate between writing and the rest of life, with the theory that you are more creative when you are active. I can buy that, worth trying anyway.

I have an idea, an experiment if you will,  on this cross-training. I think parts of the day when I’m supposed to be doing stuff I’ll work on my list for some amount of time and then write for the same amount of time and then made even add in breaks too.   It is Saturday at 4 p.m and I don’t have anything I have to do until 6:30 p.m when I need to get ready for an event. So I’m going to try to create urgency.

I’ve been working on this so far for 40 minutes,  but I think I’m going to work in 30-minutes chunks until 6:30;  Writing, working on things off my list, break. (I’ll pause the writing timer of course)

In my 30 minutes of not writing work I filled up cat food at water bowls and then worked on the KonMari for dresses,  This will take a while because I need to try most of them on and I started with 74 dresses. Also, I have wonderful taste in clothing and most of these dresses are beautiful, which makes getting rid of them hard.  

For my 30 minutes of deserved break, I started a show “Altered Carbon” which everyone says is very good.  So far I have no idea what is going on, I don’t think it’s a watch in half-hour increments sort of show. 

I was supposed to then write for 30 minutes, but I got caught up in what I was doing and wrote for an hour.  :-/

Oh, well, I’ll try harder tomorrow to do this alternating between writing and other tasks.  

Total writing time today was  

Writer’s Boot Camp Day 10

I don’t want to do this, it’s 6 PM on a Friday night.  I would rather be going out with friends. I had two different concerts in my planner for tonight.  I decided which one to go to, the later show, with the more talented musicians, but I have decided against going at all for a few reasons.  One of which is I have to do this stupid writing and two is that planning is hard and I don’t want to drive out to a show alone.

I had two doctor’s appointments today,  I forgot to have any caffeine before I left the house this morning, meaning I have a headache now.  The computer screen is bright and the computer is oddly loud.

I feel like the advice in the book today isn’t currently relevant.  It is about using brainstorming, story mapping, outlines, and timelines.  How doing these things can make the writing process more efficient; saving time and helping you create a better story.

20180511_182807I agree, brainstorming is fun and has helped me when I’m having writer’s block.  I found two old brainstorming sheets from novels I started.  Both of these novels are still in the works, so if anyone is actually reading this, thank you for that, but don’t steal my ideas. I’ve never used story map, but it sounds like a good idea. I know from experience outlines can speed up your writing, while also keeping the story on track and making sense.

 I used to not be a fan of outlines, I felt like they were extra work and would stifle my raw creative genius. Then I realized I’m not some literary savant, but I normal person who loves to read, who loves to make up stories and who wants to tell stories that others want to read.  

So now I use outlines, especially in longer works.  Sometimes I don’t in short stories.

Which brings up why this exercise is irrelevant today.  I’m almost done with my current WIP, which had a rough outline.  I only need to write a few more scenes and edit, so I can’t follow the book’s advice and do an outline for my WIP.   I guess I could it for the project I was researching yesterday, but I don’t want too. I would rather finish one before getting too involved in another.

This books is encouraging multitasking a little more than I would like.  Yes, that makes it feel more like a “real” job, but also I think might decrease productivity.  But who am I to say, since clearly people buy Rachel Federman’s work and not mine, so I guess that means she knows more than I do.  

I’m going to work on my WIP for 30 minutes now.  I wish I had finished the painful emotional scene yesterday, working on it today seems really, really hard.   I hope writing this shit helps me get over some stuff. Maybe stop thinking about it so much so I can forget a little,  but not forgive.  I will never, ever forgive.

Maybe I can do editing type stuff on it instead, I don’t know.

I mostly just read what I had so far and did some edits.  I’ll do the hard stuff tomorrow.

Total time worked today is 1:25,  much less than yesterday, felt longer.