Now that the holidays are over I’ve been getting back into writing regularly. I’ve set myself a weekly goal of four hours for working on the story I wrote during NaNoWriMo. I’ve been happily adding and deleting words, doing some research about various aspects of the story and trying to piece it together like a jigsaw puzzle. It’s a long way from being done but I’m enjoying the challenge of getting there.

At the same time I’m usually reading two or three books at a time. Its just what I do. There are times when the books I read are enjoyable or good enough. And then there are books that take my breath away with the beauty of the writing, the cleverness of the plot or with characters so real that they feel like friends.

Those amazing books are the trouble. Why? Because those are the books that make me question my own ability to write. I start questioning myself. I could never come up with a plot twist that surprising or clever. Are my characters like cardboard compared to the fully fleshed out people I’ve just read about? My descriptions are pretty good but to make someone stop and reread them just to experience the beauty of the words? That’s a lot of pressure!

These feelings of inadequacy have been creeping around the edges of my mind lately and at least this time I’m recognizing them before they get out of control and I stop trying. I don’t want to lose the momentum I’ve built up while working on this story.

This time I keep reminding myself that I wrote this story for me. That it’s totally self-indulgent and the challenge of putting it together and getting to know the characters and their motivations is fun. That this is play and not to be taken too seriously.

So far this is working. Mostly because it isn’t anywhere near ready for anybody else to read it which is good if it keeps me going. It may never be ready for anyone else to read and that’s okay too.

Do you experience this?

I would love to hear how you keep that devious voice of inadequacy at bay.


Pens on Parade

Pens on Parade (Photo credit: Abizern)

Since I posted on January 25th what my immediate goals in writing are, I decided to follow up and report that I’ve been making progress.

I finished revising one of the short stories and have sent it to a couple of objective readers to see what they think. Once I have that feedback, I’ll revise again if needed and then submit it.

I’ve also added about 2,000 words to the latest story I’m working on. I had hoped that this would be a short story but it isn’t behaving that way, so I’m just going with it for now.

I hope all of your writing is going well. What are you working on?

Catching Up and Getting Organized

The last few weeks have been crazy busy but I won’t give any excuses for not posting. Instead I can report that I have cleaned my desk and gotten my writing projects organized. This gives me a game plan to move forward with my writing. As of today I found that I have the following to work on:

  • 4 short stories ready to submit
  • 2 short stories to revise and then submit
  • 1 new story to finish the first draft
  • 1 novel to dust off and see if it is ready to submit

This doesn’t include blog ideas that I have notes for all over the place, so I guess I should add organizing those as a project.

And this doesn’t include the things I need to do for the Wordwrights Writing group.

At least I feel like I have an actual course of action instead of just looking at an overwhelming disorganized pile of folders and notebooks.

I consider this progress.

How about you? Do you have any organizational tips? How do you prioritize your writing projects?