At the moment I’m sort of between writing projects. I had a goal of finishing a novel by June 30th. That’s complete, and while there’s some additional work to do, such as the blurb and physical book cover, I accomplished my goal. It feels good to hit that, and to have the book ready to go out this weekend. I’m sort of in this strange middle between books. I’m about to start my seventh novel now, and I’ve had mixed results with starting. Sometimes I dive into the next book on the very next day, other times I’ve taken at least a week or two to get started. It feels like a bit of a hiccup in my process, but I’m embracing and running with it. So, this article today is about writing, and getting something out, even if it’s not directly related to my novel.
I split my writing into four sources right now. First is the novels. I love to write them, and will continue to hone my craft and learn more about the process of creating large stories. It’s a lot of fun, and rewarding.
The second type of writing is journal. Some days I sit down and write 1,000 words intended only for myself. It’s a way of clearing my head, of processing my thoughts, and candidly I consider them a bit of a cheat day. It’s quite easy for me to just hammer away at the keyboard, processing my thoughts in a private medium, and typing as fast as possible.
The third source is my blog. When I’m not feeling like adding to my novel, I’ll use the blog as an escape hatch and add some words there. Somehow these other sources feel wrong, but it’s how I’m approaching the topic. In my current stage of life I limit the priority for writing. I have a full-time job, as well as a lovely family that need me. I set aside approximately 30 minutes each day for writing, and on some days I’m more tired, and just want to get something out. True, that could be in my novel, but it’s where I’m at now. Also, it’s fun to write non-fiction for a change, and add thoughts to my site. I keep a running list of article ideas in my notes app for days like this.
The fourth source of writing is short stories. I’m not sure if the exact count, but there’s probably twenty short stories sitting inside my Ulysses app, waiting to see the world some day. One of them is in progress now, part of the Diminished universe I’m writing.
What I’ve found is a way that works for me, something that’s sustainable. If I’m exhausted, and ready to shut down for the day, I might turn to a short journaling attempt; add some words to the page, and type out at a hundred words a minute, just hammering away to say something, to keep the chain and keep my commitment. It’s a bit of a cheat, but it keeps me going.
All this is working toward a goal. I want to get to a place where my writing matters to a group of people, where I can learn from their feedback and continue to hone my craft.