If you’re working on a large project, listen to the same album or short playlist on repeat. That way it’ll fade to background music as you work, but when you’re lacking the motivation to start working on it again, turning on the music will kick your brain into action and picking it back up will be easy.
A while back, I wrote a post about the ugly minefield that is trying to find a legitimate literary magazine. Due to life getting really busy, I hadn’t had a ton of time to continue the search until a couple days ago. So, I sat down with my laptop, my spreadsheet of submitted works and completed works* and Poet’s Market 2017. (more…)
How many drafts should you write before you get feedback from someone? Should you write the first, rough draft and let people read it or should you try to edit it first and then send it off?
That really depends on what you want from your readers.
It also depends on how polished your drafts are. Personally, I can’t just word vomit, so my first drafts are as edited as some people’s second and third drafts, and I’m usually okay sending off a first draft for feedback. But I know people who just spit out everything that comes to mind and like to edit a few times before they let anyone read whatever they’re working on. (more…)
Recently, in an attempt to advertise a site that I no longer write for, I joined a couple of Christian writers groups on Facebook. After I quit the site, I was too lazy to unsubscribe from them (and managing Facebook notifications makes me want to punch a wall), so I still see the new posts. I also follow a lot of Christian blogs, usually by people who claim to be fiction writers.
And a lot of what I see is deeply disturbing to me, both as a Christian and a writer. (more…)
One of the biggest problems I see facing young writers is a lack of constructive criticism. Bad books get self-published because friends and family didn’t want to be mean. People are delusional that they’re good writers because no one has ever told them otherwise.
And it’s hard, giving negative feedback. But it’s necessary. It’s so, so necessary. (more…)
The words roll themselves around in my mind, bouncing off the places where I’m pretty sure there’s supposed to be the pythagorean theorem and some emotions or something. But it just feels like empty metal walls, the kind that bouncy balls deflect off of with just a bunch of dull thuds, scattering everywhere so you inevitably lose one. Or six. The balls come to a rolling, stuttering stop as my middle finger—a deliberate choice, mind you—holds down the backspace key. When Dr. Kellerman asked for us to keep a journal this semester, I don’t think he meant for us to get that deep. Even if he did say to write wherever the muse takes us. Though, to be fair, I don’t think it’s necessarily my muse steering me toward Graham. Unless of course my muse has some kind of muse mental disorder and never freaking leaves me alone. Seriously, who’s ever heard of a clingy muse? I’ve never been that lucky. I honestly think I used up all my luck winning a rabbit at the county fair when I was six by throwing a ping pong ball into the properly colored floating glass bowl. I’m not kidding. I haven’t won a raffle or game of chance since. (more…)
What’s your process for editing a story after you’ve written and keeping interested in said story enough to edit it?
First, thanks a billion for your question, Jaime. Seriously. A billion.
I’m honestly still working on the process, unless you’re asking about physically how I do it, in which case I have the original draft up on one screen, the draft I’m working on up on another, and a bunch of notes scattered in front of me. As for the actual writing process, I only have one full-length novel draft so far, and I haven’t yet found the willpower to edit it again, though I have a lot of ideas for it. Even my poems are turning out harder than I thought to edit. I just can’t look at my own work objectively enough to know if the changes I’m making are better or worse. But I’ve found a few tricks that have worked for me on shorter stories, so I’ll list those out. (more…)