Sunday, January 25, 2009

My writing week 2(4)

Hi all,

We're well and truly into the new year, Christmas seems so long ago. It's Australia//Invasion day and I am watching the cricket. I've read that Mathew Reilly watches the cricket while he writes his very successful techno-thrillers. I am sort of glad Mick Dobson won the Aussie of the Year, as I am sick of sports people and self-serving celebrities winning it. Global warming guru Tim Flannery was a worthy winner two years ago. Interesting that Mick Dobson opposes the current government's Aboriginal intervention.

For the third week in a row I did not meet my writing target of 5,000 words a week. I only wrote 3,800 words, but at least it was more than the previous week. I should have written 17,000 words so far this year, but I have only written 11,600. The deficit grows.

I had hoped to be boasting that I had finished the first draft of the novel I am working on by now, but my dawdling writing pace and developing plot elements have combined to put that eventuality back a few weeks. Chapter twenty-three was supposed to be the second last chapter, but as it drifted over 5,500 words, I decided to end it on an appropriate note of expectation and begin what is now, hopefully, the second last chapter, which I am about halfway through. The novel is now 113,000 words.

I am still reading the extensive notes of the online Other Worlds Writer's Workshop so I have not critiqued anything yet. There is a fair bit of email from the site that I have been reading to get an idea of what the participants are like.

I did a bit of reading last week and I should have a review of an edition of Analog up later this week.

If you're a science-fiction fan in Australia, Foxtel/Austar's Sci-fi channel is screening the first nine episodes of the final series of Battlestar Galactica next weekend. Hopefully my DVD recorder will be repaired and returned by then.



Nixy Valentine said...

One of the things I do is this: in my journal (that I keep in my Writer's Cafe program), I not only set project goals, but daily ones. This helps me escape that "drowning in failure" feeling when I'm behind on my word count.

A typical entry might look like this:
Begin → 46,111
(Daily Goal → 47,836 || 47,812 ♥♥♥ Monthly Goal → 46,575 || +1237)

So to break it down:

Begin → previous-sessions-end-count
(Daily Goal → begin+todays-goal || actual-count-today ♥♥♥ Monthly Goal → monthly-goal || how-far-ahead-or-behind-monthly)

Looking at this now, I realise it's pretty convoluted, and probably only works for me because I made it up... so it makes sense to me.

I'm actually just sharing this because you sound pretty bummed about where you are. But if you start each day anew, you're less likely to feel bad about writing. Letting yourself get overwhelmed is only going to make you not want to write!

Hope you find a system that works for you!

Graham Clements said...

Not that bummed, just wishing I could move it along a bit faster, which the goal of writing 5,000 words a week was supposed to help with. I had hoped to be finished the first draft of this novel and gone back and tidied it up enough for critiquing by now.

So, as off the end of last week, I have only managed to write 15,500 words of the 33,000 I would have written if I had kept to my goal.

The word count is better than the beginning of last last year though.

And now I have to have a fiddle with this blog to hopefully get it to notify me when a reader makes a comment.