Thursday, 7 February 2013

One of Those Weeks...

All my plans for progressing with the novella are slipping back this week.

I've got a handful of urgent issues to get resolved or organised. It's not that I mind, but they always happen when it's a week short on free time due to appointments.

Any other week when it's quiet and there's time to deal with additional issues, nothing happens.

I will be writing, but it will be non-fiction, some short fillers needed urgently. But it will add to my weekly writing total...

In the novella I'm about to write a scene with lots of conflict going on, and as what happens in this scene has consequences later on in the story, I need to get it clear in my head first before my fingers touch the keyboard.

I think chapter six is going to be slightly longer than the others...

I haven't even had time to read about the latest happenings in the writing world this week. Hopefully I'll have found something interesting for the weekend blog post.

Well I better get on, I have a long to do list, and words to add.

Monday, 4 February 2013

The Hazards of Writing About the Past...

It's Monday so it must be catch-up day.

I really don't know where the weekend went to, but I didn't get my regular blog post done, or my word count totals for the week recorded.

Glad to say I managed to exceed my minimum word count again last week, but it was slightly down on the previous weeks totals- only 815 words this time.

I'm one of those writers who needs quiet, with the minimum of interruptions- if any, when I'm writing.

Sadly my first session last week came to an abrupt end when after two phone calls, I was disturbed by music so loud I could actually hear the lyrics clearly. It was permeating through the walls from my next-door neighbour, and that was enough to drag me out of 1802 completely...

Every writer has their personal writing routine. I need coffee- and often toast- to get me settled.

I keep a log of every writing session I do. So I have one just for the novella, another for short stories, and another for my novel. Before I start any writing I note down the session, date and time started, and the intended work.

Then I read through the previous chapter, make minor adjustment, and make a note of anything major that occurs to me as I go along. So by the time I get to where I left off, from the previous writing session, I'm 'in the zone'... :-)

The best way to describe it, is as if I'm an observer to the scene I'm writing. I can step back a little and decide that, say, a piece of dialogue or an action would be better done this way, rather than that way, but I'm still tied into the scene in my mind, aware that the 21st century world is still going on just over my shoulder, but in the scene in my mind I'm in 1802...

I can get up to look at a reference book to confirm something, or go and make another cup of coffee, but I don't lose that link, an invisible cord between my characters and myself.

Often I don't realise how much time has gone by, until I get to a stage where my concentration wavers, or I start to feel hungry- you can use a lot of energy without realising it. Once I reach that stage my characters start to slip away from me, and I know it's time to stop.

I save my work, and if I've completed a section then I'll print it out. I'll see how many words I've done in the session and make a note on my time sheet, and the time I've finished at.

Within 5-10 minutes all the modern sounds of the surrounding world start to consciously register again and I'm totally back in 2013...

But it really isn't a good idea for anyone to ask me a question about anything, or ring me, until I'm totally back in the present.

If you write about the past, have you found anything that helps you with any stage of the process?

Current Word Count 

Work In Progress
image courtest of Salvatore Vuono and

Total for January: 3,084