I think I finally found the best way for me to write a book. I tried it for the first time, last Friday. It wasn’t a conscious decision. I simply found myself doing it. I also think it’s all tied into the acceptance I’m a storyteller.
I’ve experimented with a variety of methods. None of them have been consistently successful.
Consistent. That’s what I’m looking for.
I’ve set a timer, for varying times, ten minutes, twenty, thirty. I’ve chunked my time in segments, fifteen minutes, thirty, sixty.
I’ve done sprint writing. Writers In The Storm runs one a couple of times a year. I’ve found them productive, but as I said, they’re a couple of times a year.
I’ve tried setting daily word goals.
I’ve tried to break up those word goals into hour segments. I noticed I was writing 400-500 words an hour.
Last Friday, I noticed I was writing in 50-word segments. At first, I thought it was stupid. It was so few words. Funny how 50 words turned into 60 or 100 by the time I finished working a sentence or two or three. Next thing I knew, I’d added 3,000 words without stressing. It was easy.
I’ve used the past week to see if it’s a fluke. 🙂 Still working. I’ve also discovered the fun of keeping it to 50 words. There was a time when I’d see the partial, 38 words, and think I need to add another 50. Instead, I stick with the 50, which means I only need 12 more words. I can do 12. It usually ends up being another 23, and I’m already on my way to the next 50.
Since the realization I’m a storyteller and discovering this new way of writing, I’ve written every day. On a slow day, when I was distracted and having trouble putting words to paper, I only add 1600+ words. ONLY! 1500 used to be a good day! Every day since I started, but the one, has added 3300-3600 words. This is huge for me. I feel like I can be the writer I was intended to be with consistent writing like this.
I occasionally become caught up in the 500 and 1000-word targets. Old habit. I also start to panic about all the material I need to cover. Stepping back and remembering I only need the next 50 words ends the anxiety. I know the next few words, and the next few words. The next thing I know I’ve full scenes with description and dialogue, and the story plays itself out.
Thanks God for the insight and the inspiration.
By the way, Errant Knight is due 1 February. I’m not panicking, but I am nervous. This is so different from what I’ve done before. Praying it shows a marked improvement in my writing and storytelling.