June 15, 2015

Ready. Set. WRITE! (Week 2)

Welcome to WEEK 2 of Ready. Set. WRITE! We hope you all had a productive week! For those of you who are just joining us and are wondering what RSW is all about, it’s a summer long writing intensive through which we write/revise/plan like crazy, cheer each other on, and hold each other accountable with weekly updates. We’ll be sharing our goals and giving updates on our progress on Mondays and keeping our posts as brief as possible so we can save our words for our WiPs! Sign up on the linky at one of the host blogs each week, and don't forget to hop around to encourage other RSW participants. [For more info and a link to our stash of buttons, click HERE!]

As part of Ready. Set. WRITE! 2015, AlisonKatyErinElodie, and I will be giving away writerly care packages throughout the summer. At the end of the summer, to celebrate making it through three months of RSW, we will be rewarding ourselves with what we we're calling “Manicures and Manuscripts.” Stay tuned for more info. We hope you’ll join us for all of the fun!

***We will be tweeting with the hashtag #RSWRITE. Keep an eye out for it!***


1. HOW I DID ON LAST WEEK'S GOALS
So-so. I did work on both of my WiPs five days this week, so that was a success. I wanted to add 500+ words to ES&LT each of those days, but only managed to do so 3 out of 5 days. Sadly, I'm not feeling horribly inspired with this one. I also wanted to revise WoN for an hour five days this week. I realized very early on that the remainder of this revision will be a rewrite, which will require further planning. But despite this change in gears, I was able to come up with some great ideas for WoN.

2. MY GOAL(S) FOR THIS WEEK
• come up with a more detailed plan for WoN rewrite/revision
• continue rewriting WoN's opening and see where this leads
• work on WoN for a minimum of one hour five days this week
• keep brainstorming ways to make ES&LT more interesting

Stretch Goal → add new words to ES&LT, if feeling inspired

3. A FAVOURITE LINE FROM MY STORY OR ONE WORD/PHRASE THAT SUMS UP WHAT I WROTE/REVISED
Antarctic breakdowns + "borrowed" artifacts (from WATCH OF NIGHT + EVERY SAD & LOVELY THING, respectively)

4. THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE I FACED THIS WEEK
Challenge singular...hahahaha! That's cute. Lack of motivation and inspiration were huge challenges this week, made worse by the realization that both of my WiPs are still lacking proper planning. So, back to the drawing board I go! (Hi ho, hi ho...)

5. SOMETHING I LOVE ABOUT MY WiP  
Well, I kind of love the new opening I wrote for WoN. I think it sets the tone really nicely for the rest of the story, and even hints at bigger plot details down the road. I also toyed around with past tense, and I think I like it better. We'll see, I guess.



HOW I DID:
Monday --» Added 700 new words to WoN's opening and changed it to past tense. Worked on plot arc diagram for WoN.
Tuesday --» Switched ch. 2 of WoN to past tense and tweaked it. Spent time working on my plot arc diagram for WoN.
Wednesday --» DAY OFF
Thursday --» Long story, but I switched to revising ONLY ANNIE. I'm changing it to past tense and 3rd POV. Love it!
Friday --» Revised three chapters of ONLY ANNIE.
Saturday --» DAY OFF
Sunday --» DAY OFF



Happy Writing/Revising/Planning!



66 comments:

  1. I love that you added a Stretch Goal, Jaime! And I am really admiring your dedication. I know how hard it was for you this week and you pushed through!!! And I'm very intrigued by the new opening of WoW :) Cheering you on for your goals this week and looking forward to writing with you on Twitter!

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    1. Well, I don't want to completely stop working on that particular WiP, so adding a stretch goal seems like a good way to remind myself that it's still there and that I still love it even if I'm not feeling particularly inspired to work on it. We'll see how that goes, I guess. ;-) Not a whole lot of WoN's opening changed, but the focus is a little different, which I like.

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  2. Great start, Jaime!! I love "borrowed" artifacts...so intriguing :) Good luck with everything this week!

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    1. Thanks, Carrie! I hope I'm able to build off that start and do even better this week. :-)

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  3. Yeah, I'm with Elodie. I'm digging the stretch goal thing and I may have to add that next week. :) Also, there are so many days I struggle with inspiration and motivation and just being generally stuck. Push through it, Jaime. Just like you're doing. You've GOT THIS. Hope this week shows no signs of the struggle bus!

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    1. While that particular WiP isn't going to be my main focus this week, I'd still like to leave that option open, you know? If inspiration strikes, of course. It helps to have you ladies encouraging me to push through the lack of inspiration and motivation. Thanks! :-)

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  4. Yay for your new opening! Hope you have an inspired week :)

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    1. Thanks, Jennifer! I'm hoping it's a decent opening. I'm pretty sure it's at least better than what was there previously, so that's good. Have a great week!

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  5. It sounds like you found out where you stand and are making a new plant o fit which is progress! Keep it up!

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    1. Yes! That first week was almost like a practice run to see where I was at with my WiPs. I feel like I have more direction now, so that's good. Here's hoping this is a productive week! :D

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  6. Writing 5 out of 5 days is awesome! You rock! I hope this week gives you more motivation. :)

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    1. Thanks, Crystal! While I didn't meet my goals on all five of those days, I'm still happy I managed to work on some part of my writing on all five days. :-) Have a great week!

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  7. I hope you find some extra motivation soon, Jaime. And great job of writing 5 days a week and getting some new ideas for your one WiP!

    Best of luck with your Week 2 goals!

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    1. Thanks, Kaitlin! Me too! I'm happy I managed to sit down to write at least five times this week. That's a great start! Hope this is a productive week for both of us!

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  8. Good luck with your new goals! Doing some extra planning and revising sounds like a good plan.

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    1. Thanks, Carrie-Anne!
      My WiPs change so much in the process of writing them, that it's often a good practice to revisit my plan and tweak it accordingly. Hope it works this week!

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  9. Realizing you need a change of gears can be so demotivating, so I'm really glad to see that you're adjusting your immediate goals and still stretching for what you want out of these projects. It's very inspiring effort and dedication. Good luck this week!

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    1. You're right about the demotivating thing. Thankfully, I'm excited about some of the new ideas I have for this WiP, so that should help somewhat. Have a great week, Bailey!

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  10. There always seems to be more than one challenge standing in the way when it comes to writing. Even still, you did great! Writing all 5 days in any capacity is impressive. Good luck this week!

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    1. There really does seem to be no end to the challenges in our way. Some of those are my own laziness and getting in my own way. LOL At least I feel like I'm making strides. That's always a good thing! Have a great week, Prerna!

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  11. I might have to nab the stretch goal idea too, it sounds like a great one. This last week seems to have been pretty tough but I think it's brilliant you managed to work on your WiPs for every one of your five days, even if you didn't meet your goals - you still made some progress, after all, and that you like your new opening is great too! Good luck with this week, I'm sure it'll will go more smoothly for you. :)

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    1. Yes! It's important to remember that even though I didn't meet all of my goals for the week, I did manage to sit down to work on writing five days this week. That's better than the week before, so it's great progress! Thanks for the encouragement!

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  12. Hey Jaime: you may be drowning in writing craft books, but given the specific goal to "Keep brainstorming ways to make ES&LT more interesting" I highly recommend Donald Maass' Writing 21st Century Fiction. Each chapter ends with a page or two of questions that help you brainstorm how to make your story awesome. It's really helpful.

    Here's an example:

    Pick a "blah" scene in your MS. What changes here? What would an impartial observer notice (see or hear)? Can you emphasize to make your turning point stronger?

    Or:

    Where is the story going? Close that option, force a detour.
    Create an impossible choice. Work backward in MS to box character into that choice.

    These go on and on. So many options when you're stuck.

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    1. A few years back, I started looking at that particular book by Donald Maass and always meant to get back to it. Thanks for the reminder! I really do need to start asking myself those kinds of questions when I hit a wall or have no idea what the point of what I'm writing is. Thanks!

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  13. It's good to realize when something isn't working so you can at least begin to figure out a plan to get it back on track. We also have that issue of lacking motivation every now and then--that's why we love going to writing conferences and getting that fire back. LASCBWI is something we look forward to every summer to help us fall back in love with the craft.

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    1. This week felt sort of like a practice run, so I could figure out what my actual goals were going to be for the summer. I think I have a lot more direction now, so that's good. Unfortunately, there aren't very many writing conferences where I live (Alberta), so it's pretty tricky and expensive to actually get to one. Still, I'd love to attend one!

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  14. I love it when I nail down a great beginning for a story- sounds like you did that with WoN. When my first chapters aren't so great, I'm always stressed out about them.
    I love your comment about "Challenge singular..." So true! Hope you have a great week!

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    1. Me too! It's sooooo hard to come up with a compelling first line, let alone a compelling first chapter. But it's so important, especially when that's all agents get to see when you're querying. I hope what I came up with is better than it was. Have a great week, Melanie! :D

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  15. I know you were riding the struggle bus this week, Jaime, and I'm so impressed that you managed to still be so successful in accomplishing your goals! Best of luck with your planning and reworking and brainstorming in the coming week. I'm rooting for you! If you need writing company, let me know. I hope to be around at least a little. :-)

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    1. I think a big part of why I was a regular passenger on the struggle bus was lack of discipline, plain and simple. I'm honestly my own worst enemy these days. :-/ It's so great having you ladies to sprint with every now and again. You save me from myself! I'll see if you're around next time I'm writing. :-)

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  16. Great job figuring out the beginning to your MS! It's tough when you find something needs more work than you thought, but all the brainstorming and planning will save time later down the line - I've been there! :)

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    1. I've returned to the beginning of this particular WiP over and over again to tweak it, but I think it might be good now. Finally! Hoping the brainstorming and planning goes well this week so I can move forward!

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  17. Ugh! I feel your pain with feeling uninspired. This was a rough week for me too in the sense that the particular sections I was writing on weren't very interesting. Which never bodes well for the reader. Which means it will all need to be rewritten. So what's the point! ;) Hope this next week goes better for us both!

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    1. That's exactly where I was at, Karyne. It's the worst when you just know that what you're writing isn't very interesting. If I'm bored with it, readers will be too. I guess we just need to remind ourselves that first drafts don't have to be perfect. That's where revisions come in. I'm so set on trying to get out a first draft in as good condition as possible that sometimes it actually holds me back. Progress is progress. Need to remember that. Good luck this week!

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  18. I feel your pain -- my WIP seems to lack proper planning too, no matter how often I restructure it.

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    1. This is an ongoing problem for me. I am bound and determined to hammer this thing out once and for all this week! :-)

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  19. I guess week one was for gauging where you're at with both WIPs. We'll have to gab over Skype some more to help with your additional planning. I'm sure a big load of inspiration is going to unexpectedly dump on you for ES&LT. As for WoN, I love how you changed the intro. I think it works really well to kick the story off. Good luck with your goals! I'm sure we'll talk throughout the week to see how it's going! :)

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    1. Another Skype session would be wonderful. I really need to brainstorm ways to make ES&LT more interesting. I have the basic skeleton of what needs to happen, but it needs a lot more sinew and flesh now. (Eww.) I love that story so much, so I hate the fact that I'm struggling with it. I guess it's a good thing that I'm motivated to work on WoN, but it's morphing into something slightly different again. LOL It's neverending. 0_o

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  20. Ugh. What is WITH this anti-motivation bug going around? Let's cure that shit this week, yes? Love the directions my mind takes with "antarctic breakdown" and "borrowed artifacts." They'd even be cool in the same story ;)

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    1. So glad I'm not the only one struggling with this motivation thing. All aboard the struggle bus! Actually, I wouldn't wish it on anyone. We'll definitely have to kick this crap to the curb this week. :-)

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  21. I love that you gave yourself a stretch goal so you have a little wiggle room. I can relate to lack of inspiration and motivation. I am on the quadrillionth round off revisions on my WiP so... motivation is getting a little difficult! :) Good luck this week!

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    1. I really want to focus on this one WiP, but I don't want it to keep me from working on the other one, which I also love. I hope I'm able to get around to it this week. But mostly that I feel inspired/motivated to work on one or both of these WiPs. Have a great week, Kitty! :D

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  22. Motivation. Isn't that the truth! Glad to hear your new opening is good, though! Good luck this week :)

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    1. Motivation for me is just a nice way of saying laziness. Ha! I just need to stop being so darn lazy and get the work done. I guess admitting I have a problem is the first step, right? Here's to a less lazy week! ;-)

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  23. I think lack of motivation is going to bite me in the butt this week too. And I set my word count goal @ 8K. Eeep! =)

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    1. Like I was saying to Liz, lack of motivation for me is just succumbing to laziness and avoiding the hard work these WiPs require. I'm really hoping to smarten up this week and stop being so lazy about my writing. Hey, maybe setting a high word count goal will motivate you? I mean, if you know you have so many words to write, it'll be harder to get lazy about sitting down and doing the work, don't you think? There might be something to this... Good luck this week!

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  24. I like the idea of a Stretch Goal. :)

    Motivation is a tricky thing. It looks like you've kept moving, and I think that's really important. Sometimes I just throw words on the screen to keep things flowing.

    Good openings are pure magic I think.

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    1. With the stretch goal, I didn't want to completely abandon working on that particular WiP, so I feel like I'm allowing myself to do so by at least mentioning it in some form. Lack of motivation, for me, is basically laziness. Motivation sounds so much nicer though. LOL I just need to get out of my own way. :-)

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  25. I hate not having any motivation to write. It just makes the novel writing process so much more difficult but the good thing about those moments is that you can get through them. Best of luck with your goals for the week! :)

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    1. I just want to be excited about writing again instead of just being lazy about it. Sometimes you have to go in search of inspiration and/or motivation and just do the hard work. I guess that's what RSW is all about, right? Have a great week, Raven!

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  26. I am right there with you on not being motivated this week. Sometimes it's better to dip a toe into a project and start slowly rather than jumping in with two feet. I hope you have a great week and find your groove. :)

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    1. For me, it's getting back into a regular routine of writing without it feeling...routine. Ha! I think this first week was a good way of testing the waters and seeing where we want to go with our goals from here on in. Hope we both find our groove this week! :-)

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  27. So glad to hear that you got some headway with one WIP, even though if you're having a challenge with the other one. I think we've all been at that spot with no motivation/inspiration for a project. I hope you get there on yours!

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    1. I go in cycles where I'm all about one project, but then get bored of it for a while and move on to another project. For a while. And the cycle continues. It would be wonderful to completely finish something just to get it out of the cycle. Ha! I've been working on this same WiP for four years now, so it's high time I finished it. Have a great week!

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  28. Glad I'm not the only one struggling this week. I hope you find some inspiration!

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    1. It's so tough to get back into a regular routine of writing, especially when you know you're going to have to report on how you did. Eek! It's great accountability, but sometimes I get a bit overwhelmed by it all. In Alberta, we only really get a few months of really great weather (tops), so that's always a distraction. Who wants to be inside in front of a computer when it's finally gorgeous outside? Here's hoping we both find inspiration this week! :-)

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  29. Even though you had trouble getting inspired to write on this project, you DID write. So kudos to you. And... you've managed to maintain your sense of humor about it. Have a great week, Jaime.

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    1. Yeah, once you strip away the ways I didn't totally meet my goals you can see that I did actually write and revise, so that's definitely a positive! I think I might finally be finding my groove, which is something to be happy about. Have a great week, Eden!

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  30. Lack of inspiration makes writing something horrible. Impossible. But what can we do? Here's wishing better vibes this week!

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    1. I agree. So I'm setting aside the project I'm less inspired to work on in favour of the one that I am. It doesn't mean I can't work on the former, but my focus will be more on the latter. I need to be careful not confuse lack of motivation/inspiration with my own laziness. Sadly, all too often it's laziness. I'm working on that though! :-)

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  31. Antarctic breakdowns. << I have no idea what this means, but I like it. :)

    The fact that you're writing two books at once is impressive. I have to stick with one story or else I can't get into it. That makes what you accomplished this week even more impressive.

    Good luck hitting this week's goals!

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    1. The only way I can usually work on more than one project is if they're at different points in the process. Like writing one and revising another. When I realized that the one project was going to need whole sections rewritten, I kind of decided that it should be my focus at least for now. Doesn't mean I can't still work on the other one, but I'm going to spend the bulk of my time on the sci-fi. Good luck with your goals too, Tracey! :-)

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  32. Hang in there, Jaime! I can definitely relate to not having motivation or inspiration. I struggled with both a bit this week, though not as much as energy was an issue. BUT getting an opening down that you like is a big accomplishment!! I struggle the most when I don't have an opening I like because I feel like I need it to properly set the tone. So, kudos for that and maybe from there, you'll find your inspiration and motivation trickle back in. :)

    Good luck with your goals this week! I'm cheering for you.

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  33. I am feeling SO UNMOTIVATED right now thanks to a lack of energy and stress. Great job pushing through it last week and working on your opening and figuring out ways to make WoN work! Hopefully everyone feels more motivated this week :)

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