Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Work In Progress Wednesday #006

It's Wednesday again. Isn't it funny how that happens every week right on schedule? Amazing. Anyway, with Wednesday comes Work in Progress Wednesday time.

If anyone else out there in the blogosphere wants to join in on the fun, simply post your own WIP Wednesday entry on your blog and leave a link to it in the comments below. Or if you don't have a blog, feel free to report your progress directly into the comments box.

For more detailed information concerning what all this nonsense is about please consult the original Work in Progress Wednesday posting.

It's been a pretty slow week on the progress front here. I am in the middle of revising chapter four right now. As I mentioned in my previous post, an unexpected visit from my friends pulled me off course a little bit, but to be completely honest even before they showed up on my doorstep things were not moving as quickly as I wanted.

I think part of the problem is that it is difficult to set goals like I did while writing my first draft. My 500 words a day goal forced me to produce words even when I didn't want to, but the amount of work accomplished while working on revisions and rewrites is more difficult to count. Sometimes I'll spend a whole hour just reading through a chapter and trying to identify the major problems. Then I need to figure out how to fix those problems, and sometimes that requires me to check my email five hundred times while I try and figure it out. Suddenly, it's time for bed and I've deleted a little bit, typed a little bit, but don't have that, "Ahhh, I really accomplished something" feeling that helps me to sleep at night.

So, it's a bit frustrating because I am at that point where I feel like I am sooooooo close, and yet so far away. I think this is where the temptation can come in for a writer to send out a rough draft to an agent or publisher, just wanting to move onto that next part and make something happen. This however, would be a very very bad thing, and when that kind of temptation comes over me, I just remind myself that I still need to write a query letter and that usually squelches the impulse pretty quickly.

Anyway, for the coming weeks I am going to give myself the goal of getting through one chapter a day. This week that will be especially difficult as we are moving from our apartment of three years into a nice little rental house. While it is very exciting to be getting out of our apartment where the horrible downstairs neighbors pound on their ceiling/our floor to let us know when they think we are walking too loudly, it is also going to be a time consuming endeavor. Not only do we have to pack up all our stuff and move it across town, but we have the extra level of difficulty of having to do so with a toddler. Yeah, my son is not quite two , but he already seems to have a pretty good handle on the whole terrible thing.

Anyway, sometimes life gets in the way of writing, so the second half of my goal is to not beat myself up too much over how much I am not getting done, and instead focus on what I do get accomplished.

Finally, if you missed my last post, I am also running a writing analogy contest this week. I want your best analogy about the writing process. You can compare coming up with new topics to blog about, with trying to pull a rabbit out of the hat. Or you can get creative in describing how you try to get that first draft down, tackling rewrites, pinning down a query, or anything else that you can come up with.

The prize is this really cool book called "i never metaphor i didn't like", and also more importantly bragging rights and the totally meaningless award pictured below:

Yes, I made that award myself with my rudimentary Photoshop skills (so rudimentary, in fact, that I did not even use Photoshop because that program just confuses me. No, I used a little program I call "Photoshop for dummies" aka Microsoft Picture It! The exclamation mark is theirs, not mine.)

And that's it for my WIP Wednesday. Now you tell me, how is your WIP progressing?


  1. I did great. But I'm getting aggressive for next Wednesday's goal.

    You're doing great, too! Revisions are supposed to be slow and tedious. :)

  2. Thanks for visiting my blog and for your comments! Hope you'll come again real soon!

    Love the title of your blog and your post today was just what I needed! Since we're both revising WIPs together, we'll have to be cheerleaders for each other! I added myself as one of your followers and look forward to your next post.

    The revision process is like writing several books into one! No matter how many times I say, "Okay. That's good. Move on." I still find myself going back and revising. Will my first book always be a WIP?????

  3. You'll have to explain to me what the WIP Wednesday means again. I didn't quite get it. But it sounds really neat!

    And I'm still trying to think of an analogy! Now I'm really motivated to win the medal. :)

  4. I've actually met my goals this week which feels like a miracle since everyone with a nose in my house has a cold.

  5. Jennifer - You did do great! Yeah, these revisions definitely fit the slow and tedious bill then.

    Donna - Thanks for stopping by her as well! Revisions can be endless, with my first book, every time I thought it was done, I would go back one more time to change something else.

    Jody - WIP Wednesday is just basically a chance to talk about where you are with your current writing projects. You can comment here or write a post on your own blog and then leave a link in the comments. Either way it is lots of fun!

    T. Anne - Oh, I hope you don't get the cold! My body cannot resist a cold if anyone in my vicinity has one, hope you are stronger than me.

  6. Life always gets in the way of writing for me, it seems. But I try to make it for me by buckling down and doing more when I have the chance. Funny how that works. Good luck on your progress, and keep going!

    I think your award looks fantastic. :)

  7. A chapter a day is a good goal, Kate. For me, I turn on the track changes and then I can tangibly SEE what I've deleted and typed in. That helps me feel like I've accomplished something, even if all I did was move one word or delete another.

    And I'm still working on that analogy thing.

  8. Already on chapter 4 sounds like good progress to me! But I know what you mean about word count goals vs. wait-how-do-I-count-editing goals. This is why I always feel super productive during NaNoWriMo and kind of wander around the rest of the year.
    In my rewriting, I'm trying not to set any goals (I would probably break them on purpose). I guess the main thing is to keep going each week, and my WIP Wed. posts show me the progress I've been making!
    My new post is up, too.

  9. Oh boy, I hear you on the toddler front. Mine took an hour to go to sleep tonight. Grrr.
    I don't like revisions very much either. Yuck. Good luck!

  10. I fizzled out this week. Sidetracked by life and other things, but plan on getting back on track now. Moving can be stressful even without a child running around, so take it easy on yourself. My post is up now.


  11. This has been an excellent week for my WIP. I have written close to 30 pages this week. I am hoping, hoping, hoping I will finish the book within a week. I am just over 75,000 words now. Gotta keep going!

  12. I did it, finally! I put the WIP Wednesday on my side bar. Phew! This is going to be very helpful for me, thanks!

  13. Lady Glamis - It's true, life getting in the way is just the way it goes, and all we can do is do what we can, when we can.

    Also, LOVE the WIP sidebar on your blog. You even used my other not-quite-ready-for-Photoshop image. It's also cool to find out more about your WIP. Squeee - I can't wait to read "sent partial to agent" though!!

    Elana - I have tried the track changes and well, we did not get along. For some reason it would always cause to me jump all over the manuscript, until I was crazy.

    Annie - Yes, it really comes down to the sense of feeling productive when you are doing something easily quantifiable.

    Jessica - LOL, my toddler had a not wanting to go to bed moment last night too... maybe it was something in the air.

    Robin - HA - fizzle is a great way to describe those didn't get much done weeks. It is okay, though - they happen to all of us.

    Cindy - Thanks for stopping by! Wow, 30 pages is impressive for a weeks work. Good luck on getting to the end - it sounds like you are close!

  14. A chapter a day...very cool! I am now where that fast most weeks!!! Great job.

  15. Good luck with moving and your little boy! I have an almost 15mo old who thinks he's two as well...

    That whole editing thing sure slows everything down, doesn't it? Maybe that's why I decided I needed a prequel to put the back story into before I actually pull it out of my first novel. Is that cheating? I get to keep writing and not edit yet! ;)

  16. Go you! I like your comment on my blog about writing a short story. Only....I haven't ever written a short story! Except one in college that would never hold up because it's not the happily ever after kind. I don't know. I think my biggest problem is finding TIME to write. This social life thing that I decided to join is kicking me in the rear!

  17. Christine - Yeah, so far I'm not that fast either!

    Janyece - LOL, I love the idea of cheating by writing a prequel!

    Stephanie - If you can write a novel, you can write a short story. Now the whole social life thing, yeah, I know - that's a little tougher to work around.

  18. It is sooooo imperative to keep yourself from sending out queries until your manuscript is REALLY ready.

    But gosh darnit it is difficult.