Tuesday, June 5, 2012

A Look Forward - Goals And Challenges for the Rest of the Year

This summer I will be doubling up on my writing dares.  I will continue to do the "A Round of Words in 80 Days" challenge (which, for those of you who don't know, is 80 days on, 10 days off all year around).  But I will also be doing the Clarion Write-a-Thon.

These two challenges do not coincide exactly -- the Clarion dare starts during the off time of the ROW80, so I'll need to plan time off before it starts.  And it only extends for 42 days -- which means it ends just before the ROW80 Round 3 mid-point.

I'm thinking I need a calendar.  I'm also thinking that I'm not going to double down on the goals (that is, I'm not going to write 1000 words for one, then a separate 1000 words for the other -- all words count for both).

Summer Goals Calendar

Now until June 16 -- continuing with current goals in ROW80 (7000 new words a week -- only fiction counts, but it can be any project.)

Jun 17-23 -- BREAK (I'll end the ROW80 Round 2 challenge a few days early, but I'll need it.)  FYI, June 17 is Watergate Break-In Day.

Jun 24 - August 4 - Clarion Write-a-thon. This overlaps with the next ROW80 round.  So the goals until August 4 will be the same for both:

I'm going to try to beat 7000 words a week. This will probably depend on how the end of this ROW80 round goes.  The plan is 1400 words, 5 days a week, and but I'm going to try to add 500 words on Wednesdays and Sundays, when I'm busy trying to get up a new episode for the blog.

Projects for Clarion Segment

1.) Continue The Misplaced Hero, the twice-a-week serial, aiming at 600-700 words per episode.

2.) The Man Who Stepped Up (second book in The Man Who Did Too Much series) - exploratory draft -- keep working on it as long as my brain keeps handing me scenes.

3.) The actual WIP: Devil In A Blue Bustle - almost done, really, but the brain wandered elsewhere.

If I can pull this off, I have hope of having THREE books to publish this fall.

August 5 - September 20 (remainder of ROW80, Round 3): I'll return to counting minutes rather than words. I'll be doing clean up writing, editing, formatting, fussing and rewriting.  I'll also be back to my regular work schedule, and that will be an adjustment. One hope is to be able to publish The Misplaced Hero in ebook form during this segment.

Return to the regular day job schedule

I really want to keep up what I'm doing this summer into the regular work year.  But I will have to adjust the goals to suit the fact that I will be spending more time on the day job.  For word count, I should cut whatever I manage over summer by 1/3 to make a realistic winter goal.

That means I am anticipating 5000 words a week for ROW80's  final round for 2012 starting in October.  That's 40k for the round.  (However, I might not do word count for the entire round.)

That should be enough to finish The Man Who Stepped Up, AND Devil In A Blue Bustle, AND the expanded book version of The Misplaced Hero.

(Part of this will depend on whether The Man Who Stpped Up will be as long as The Man Who Did Too Much.  I have this delusion that MW1 was long because it was the opening story -- the set up for the series -- and that subsequent stories will be closer to the 65k mark I like for a light mystery.)

I will also be doing one other time-consuming thing in the fall: I plan to continue publishing a twice-a-week serial.

However, it will be a different series, and the raw book is already done.  Test of Freedom will have somewhat longer episodes, as it was not purpose-written for a serial, and it has more atmosphere and such.  However, it really seems suited for breaking into 1000-1200 word episodes.

While it is already written, I will have adapt it for serial, and edit and format, and... I have to do the art.  However, I will not do individual images for each episode.  I might, instead, create square cap-headers, like the dingbats in Adventure Magazine. I can create a set of images, representing each character, point of view, setting, and use it like an illustrated cap.  And I might even do those images this summer, so in the fall I don't have to worry about them.

Finally: I hope, starting in late August or September, to go back to regular blogging.  I'll be doing updates Sunday and Wednesday as before, and the serial Monday and Thursday. But I hope to have interesting blog content on Tuesdays and Fridays.  Commentary, analysis, and Friday Favorites.  I might go back to doing Friday interviews - though probably only once a month.

(BTW, for those who haven't been reading my blog for long -- or who weren't paying attention -- those Corgis are pulling "Time's Winged Chariot" which is ever nipping at my heels.)

See you in the funny papers.


carol said...

Can't wait to read Devil in a Blue Bustle. I do love Mick and Casey!

The Daring Novelist said...

Thanks, Carol! I wanted to have it done by now, but you know how it goes sometimes....