Row 80: Chugging…

It’s been more than a month since my last ROW80 post and things are chugging along, a little slowly for my taste, but moving…

It’s November and I’m into the last week of NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) where the goal is 50,000 words in 30 days. I am way behind, sitting at a whopping 11,000 words but I’m not giving up. My NaNo Project is the second book in a mystery series that I am working on. One that is entirely different from the other mystery thriller WIP I have: Lily’s Hope. I figure even if I don’t hit the 50,000 word goal by midnight Dec. 1st, at least I’ll have a semblance of a draft that I can go back and add to/work on. And the best possible scenario: use this Thanksgiving Break from school (for my boys) to catch up on my writing. It helps that I won’t be driving back and forth from school and activities. We should be home.

But seriously, where did the month go?

Speaking of Lily’s Hope, I have been working on pages for that WIP. It helped that for most of the Saturdays in late October and November, I have been able to write at a cafe with members of my Writing Group for a couple of hours. That time always seems to jumpstart the momentum when it comes to working on Lily’s Hope. The plot has taken on a couple of more layers so that’s good.

Crossing my fingers for this week…

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Pushing Through A Plot

It has been a good week. I didn’t get the amount of writing that I hoped to get done on Lily’s Hope, my sci-fi/mystery thriller but I did get to work on it, thanks to some scheduled writing time at a cafe that was set aside by the writing group I am a part of. That time plus a little bit of time writing the night before was what I used to work on Lily’s Hope.

Lately, I find myself having a hard time wondering what’s next in my plot, asking questions like “what scene should follow this one?” or where am I going with this scene? In moments, it feels like I’m pushing through slowly, not able to get to the next plot point. And then I’ll have a breakthrough, and the scene starts to flow as I write. Talk about a combination of lows and highs.

In regards to NaNoWriMo, I was planning on working on an outline for the story I want to write during the month of November for NaNoWriMo but didn’t get to do much on it. I am hoping that will change this week.

So I push on…

Hello, Row 80: Round 4

I am jumping into Round 4 of ROW 80: the writing challenge that knows you have a life.

I am pretty excited.

It’s been a couple of rounds since I participated, life being insanely busy, but I am happy to be back and am striving to finish this round (unlike the last two ROW 80 rounds I participated in).

Without further ado, my goals for this last round of the year are as follows:

1. Write up to pg. 240 of my WIP: a sci-fi, mystery novel called Lily’s Hope. I am eager to finish a first draft by the New Year if possible.

2. Participate in NaNoWriMo this November: 50,000 words in 30 days on a new writing project: a novel.

I hope to write more on this blog as well.

The last few months have been filled with new ideas for writing projects but limited time. I hope participating in ROW 80 will help me to focus.

So here goes…

A Writer’s Journey

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A writer’s journey.

In moments it seems never-ending but I am still on it.

I’ve decided that I am going to record my steps in this blog.

My moments, my thoughts, my actions.

Be more active in using this space I have before me. Hopefully connect with other writers like me who are going through their own journeys.

I haven’t been officially published or had a screenplay optioned yet so it feels like such a long road.

Throw in life, family and other responsibilities, and the path goes back to seeming never-ending.

I am not going to give up though.

I will continue to move forward in faith.

And use this space to record it all.

Round 2: Jumping In

It is Round 2 of ROW 80 and I am jumping in, a week or so late. I am glad to be back. The last round I kind of fizzled out a bit so here I am, starting again.

Since Round 2 will cover about two and 1/2 months, my goals are the following:

1. Write/work on 10 pages each day in April on my WIP Mystery/Sci-Fi novel, Lily’s Hope. Then write/work on 10 pages each day in May on my other WIP, a cozy mystery, Cathedral.

2.To complete a draft of at least 300pp of Lily’s Hope by the end of this round. The 10 pages I do per day for Goal #1 should help in this goal in addition to the scheduled writing times I’ve set up to work on Lily’s Hope over the next couple of months. I am up to pg. 90 at this point.

3. Complete a draft of my police procedural script, Mariana’s Story (120 pages).

I look forward to hitting the ground running. Wishing all you ROW80ers a good week!

Melanie

Slow Starting…

The writing in the past week and a half has been like a car starting slow at first. I didn’t make great leaps in the pages I wanted to cover. I haven’t been fully disciplined with keeping to my writing schedule. I had another book review deadline that I had to meet and that took precedence over the writing. Not much time writing away from home either. I haven’t touched the paranormal thriller or the mainstream for that matter. Hoping to get into the schedule and jump in this week.

I did make some progress on a revision, though. Completed what I scheduled out to do for last week and the beginning of this week which is great because out of all the stories and half-completed drafts I have, this one is the closest to being complete and possibly published.

I’ve been considering self-publishing, lately. A good friend of mine just did it and she’s so happy. She’s taking publishing into her own hands and likes it.

Any of you out there self-publish or are planning to? What are the pros and cons? Would love some feedback.

In the meantime, hoping for more progress this week and wishing the same for you, ROW80ers.

Have an amazing week!

A New Year, A New Round, A New Consistency…

Hello, 2014!

I am looking forward to a new year of writing and the hope of completing a few novel drafts this year.

I have big dreams for my writing this year and I hope to accomplish the smaller goals toward them.

My goals for this round:

1. To make it to pg. 300 with my paranormal thriller. I am at pg. 111 right now.

2. To make it to pg. 300 with my mainstream novel. I am at pg. 258 right now.

3. To make it to pg. 60 with my current script. I am technically at pg. 1 right now.

I am excited especially for goal #3 because I haven’t written a script in awhile. For me, as a screenwriter, it is like getting back to my first love.

So a lot of writing in the next two months but I’m ready.

So glad for the ROW80 challenge.

Wishing all you ROW80ers a wonderfully productive week!

Since November 1st (and NaNo)

Whoa, it’s been awhile since my last post. Like awhile.

Since November 1st, it’s been all about NaNo (National Novel Writing Month) and I’m almost to 30,000 words. I am behind by a bit but am hoping to catch up. Finding myself stuck and trying to write my way out.

Since November 1st, Lily’s Hope – my mystery thriller has been on the back burner (not intentionally) as I do NaNo. However, not for long. I hope to return to it within the next several days in the midst of major house cleaning (because the relatives are coming into town for Thanksgiving), several activities at my boys’ school, a deadline for book reviews, etc., etc., life and NaNo. In the midst of life. I still have a few readers who are reading my pages and I need to get them new pages soon. Their feedback has been good.

Since November 1st, my mainstream has taken a backseat too.

Yet, I’m not discouraged. I think the NaNo time is helping keep me energized. So I forge ahead with NaNo with my goal this rest of the week to catch up. In the meantime, I will get reacquainted with my thriller and hopefully pick up where I left off.

Wishing all you ROW80ers a good rest of the week.

Enter the Outline

Since Wednesday, the writing has been fairly consistent which makes me happy.

I have been working on both the paranormal thriller (Lily’s Hope) and the mainstream novel project. Working on each project by writing in 10 page increments. It’s been good. Slow yet deliberate. And I’ve been inspired to squeeze in some writing in between the scheduled writing times which has been nice.

The process still feels never-ending.

This week I made a decision to put more emphasis and time on my novel outlines. To do some extensive outlining on the existing writing projects above and on a few future projects – one of which I may use as a basis for my next Nano (National Novel Writing Month) writing project. Lately, I’ve been hearing that some really successful authors outline extensively – putting a lot of time and energy into their outlines, which then results in a smooth novel writing effort. Ken Follet did this with Pillars of the Earth. Outlined extensively for about a year. Amazing. Yet it makes perfect sense.

Now I don’t know if I could strictly work on an outline for a novel for a year but I’m noticing there is something to laying out the details of the story and working them out through the outline. For me, this will require lots of patience since most times, I just want to get to writing and creating scenes. I’m looking forward to the outlining though. There are so many scenes that run through my head for the various different story ideas I have, I’m beginning to think I need to outline. I also need to desperately pick out the holes in my stories and fill them.

So onward I go — writing and outlining along the way. Wishing all you ROW80ers a great week of writing and progress.

Quality, Not Quantity

A new week…new progress. It’s been a good one so far – starting with last Saturday when I had a scheduled writing time outside for the first time in weeks. It was so refreshing.

I’ve been eager and excited to work on my mainstream novel this week – even sneaking in times to write throughout my day in half hour increments. What’s helping is that I am working on it 10 pages at a time. I am even saving each set of 10 in its own file, after copying and pasting the finished section in a master draft document. I tend to focus more on the details of the novel this way.

Feels doable. Feels like I’m giving my scenes more in-depth attention and that inspires me. I am focusing on the quality of my work instead of the quantity now. It’s awesome. Yet, I am getting through more pages as I focus on them ten at a time. It’s very cool. Overall, too, it feels like my writing is much better when I do it this way.

I am working on the mystery thriller in this same way as well. Good stuff.

Overall, so far, so good on the two goals I set for this round.