Sunday, January 8, 2012

RWO80 Update - Writing Schedules and Productivity (upcoming)

It is horrible when you end a "vacation" and start a writing dare utterly exhausted. I really think writing will refresh me, but I need to start slower. Plus it's the beginning of the semester and things are always wild.

So I'll be slacking a bit until the 14th, at which point I hope to dive fully into the new schedule. (Maybe build up some steam.) I'm going to start by just getting some minutes done every day. That's the goal for a while yet. I am determined, though, that the Year Of The Dragon will be something special!

A quick update on my A Round Of Words In 80 Days dare:

Wednesday, Day 3 - 30 minutes. The scene I was working on yesterday still needs one more layer. I thought up what it needs, but mostly just moved on to the next transition, which sets up the, er, well I guess it could be called an actual pie fight scene.

Thursday, Day 4 - 45 minutes. Right on past the pie fight, an don to the murder.

Friday, Day 5 - 98 minutes. Today was a good day. I paused to do a little off the clock idea generation for short story writing. I realized I have two train stories, and maybe that could make for a nice thematic collection. In the meantime, I got to a section I had to write new for Devil In A Blue Bustle. It feels nice getting into the voice of the story.

Speaking of voice, I am reading Black Orchids -- an early Nero Wolfe -- and it suddenly struck me how similar Mick's style is to Archie. Oh, not as sarcastic and sassy, and his personality is not the same, but they have that hard-boiled poetic dryness in common. I think this is also helping to get back into the voice and flavor of the series. I'll probably read another Nero Wolfe after this one.

Saturday, Day 6 - 0 minutes. Muther Effin' Migraine. I don't get 'em like other people do, but I do get them whenever my hormones fluctuate. And given that I am a woman of a certain age, those fluctuations are unpredictable.

Schedule Change

My schedule will shift this semester, in such a way as to change the way I look at my writing time. I'll be posting about it this coming week in a series of posts about Weekend Writing vs. Workday Writing for those of us who have to work a day job. And, of course, the related subject of prepping to work full time at writing.

I was going to post these as a part of the update posts -- because I figure ROW80 participants would be most interested. However, even though I have a good first post hand written up, I am drooling on myself right now, so I'm going to post them separately. I'll post links to them in the update posts.

See you in the fuzzy papers... Wait. Strike that.

See you in the funny papers.


Unknown said...

I empathize with the work vs time to write challenge.

It's why I'm up most weekdays by 5 so that I can fit some time in.

I think it comes down to how much do we want this. And then cutting out other things - even though that can be painful.

I'm also trying to set strict guidelines with work.

The Daring Novelist said...

The problem is that over the long haul you can burn yourself out. Every choice you make creates a trade off.

One thing, I think that indie publishing has provided opportunities for young writers like never before. You can burn both ends and the middle of the candle when you're young.... and with indie publishing, you can start to see some fruits of that effort before you wreck yourself.

But I'll be talking about htat more in the upcoming weeks.

Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear that you're feeling burnt-out Camille! Here's a cheer for the work that you have done!

From my experience working on big projects, I need pretty large cushions of about a month or so. If's its a really intensive design project that involves creative input from a team, there's a period of post-project depression (that's a thing, isn't it?).

Starting slowly seems to be the best option, because work while exhausted can feel gratifying--but that's often work that has to be beaten within an inch of its life to make it good.

I am looking forward to your posts about your shifting schedule! And hoping that you have a chance to unwind a little.

TMcCusker said...

Okay--the comment box is not being kind today! I left a comment and it was logged as Anonymous.

In brief: I'm glad you still got some work done, despite starting the challenge exhausted! I also hope that you get a chance to relax/unwind. You went at the last draft pretty hard--and a bit of an easy start is just one of your many deserved breaks!

Looking forward to your posts in the coming weeks about your changing schedule.

Unknown said...

Wow, busy. I wish you the best with that change in scheduling. Bet you can do it all, anyway.

Jenny Hansen said...


In December, after NaNoWriMo, we had #NaNoSlackMo for National Novelist Slack-Ass Month. That train is still running the tracks if you need to hop on it for a few weeks. :-)

There is nothing wrong with easing in as long as you are making upward progress. Keep on trucking!

The Daring Novelist said...

Thanks Tracy, Hunter and Jenny:

One thing I've got to point out, though, is that it isn't the writing that wore me out. It was the day job, where the powers that be decided to squeeze the heck out of the break between semesters this time -- not realizing (or caring) that there is a ton of work to do over break, and one week during which the staff is locked out.

I'll be talking a little more about that during the Workday vs. Weekend Writing posts.