This is topic Did You Write? 02-14-11 in forum Open Discussions About Writing at Hatrack River Writers Workshop.

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Posted by rstegman (Member # 3233) on :
Did You Write? 02-14-11

It is horrible when you really need a day or two more to meet a goal or deadline and you just don't have it. There are times when this note gives you that feeling. It shows up each and every week to prompt you to report on your writing during the past week, and it is horrible when the answer is no.
This note is to help those of us who write once a month, or a few times a year, to write regularly. Seeing this note coming up is intended to get you to open some writing project, any writing project so you can say you wrote. Over time, it can become a real habit, to write regularly and get something, eventually, done. Not all habits are bad. the thing is to develop good habits.

How much one writes is unimportant. I will accept opening a work just to read it over, but this note is really to get actual writing done. If the work is not opened, nothing can be written.

What you write is unimportant. It can be anything at all, not just what I list here.
We all know that new writing is writing. Adding words to some work is unquestionably writing. Editing is also writing. Few of us can write perfectly the first time so one has to edit, and for some of us, many times. In editing, the word count is not really important as one might remove a hundred words and add ninety nine. The final count word is disappointing. Other times the object is to reduce the size of the work to fit within the pages of some publication. Editing someone else's work also counts as writing, and so does Critiquing someone's work. Poetry, writing assignments, technical writing, blogging, world and character creation is writing. E-mails can be writing if they are wordy and pertain to story or writing.
In essence, if you have to ask if it is writing, the answer here is yes.

I finished another reduction pass on my Waxy story, and then started working through it backwards. What a difference in the editing. I am looking at the individual paragraphs or groups of paragraphs as stand alone, rather than following the flow. One sees things that the eye pass over when following the flow of the story.
Once I started this, I suddenly started removing bits and pieces like mad. This week I removed a thousand words and I am only half way through the work. I wanted to have more done, but things got in the way this weekend to limit my writing time. I would love to see if this works for anybody else. Of course, my next edit pass will be back the normal way to see what inconsistences show up with this process. It is fun, though.

I am a little ahead on my story ideas right now. I have a club meeting Thursday and that will knock me back closer than normal on the story idea numbers. I do like being a little ahead in case something comes up. Not counting what I am posting tonight, I have 48 story ideas in compost pile. I am still working with "new" story ideas, but am getting down into the top of the pile. It has been at least two months since I got lower than what is right now my top fifteen story ideas. I have two sets of story ideas stapled together because they are based on the same concept. they tend to show up in my count somewhere between fifteen and twenty. They are good ideas, but a little difficult to write properly, so I am avoiding them.

I purchased a metal working lathe from a friend of mine who can no longer use it. I went over it with my brother and that thing is a real gem. It needs cleaning and adjustments, but it is a super machine. I am coming up with all sorts of projects to work on with it, mostly tools for my woodworking. It will always exceed my abilities and my imagination. If you have read my story ideas over the years, I have some imagination.
One feature of this lathe is that one can position the motor in a number of different configurations, including pointing down or on an angle on a bar above the bed to act like a drill press or milling machine. there are attachments we don't have that would turn it into a router, a table saw, a milling machine, or act like a hand carver, just to name a few things it can do. Some of those things could be "shop made" to do those things.

I now have had two excellent woodworking weekends. I still don't see myself doing it professionally, but I had work days that one dreams about. I am taking my time, but my cannon that I am making is shaping up to be looking good. The fairy I am making is essentially done. I made the mushroom cap she will be peaking under to see if it is raining. I have to make the stem, base of the carving, and the rest of the scene. I have other projects that are coming along, slowly but surely.
My art show is in April. It I have almost exactly two months to go for my art show. For some, that is a long time. Woodworking takes time and I am going to be fighting deadlines with projects in process right now. You must remember, I am a PROcrastinator. I am no amateur.

Using the above for a story idea,
Gimble purchased what was advertized as a mini machine shop. It was more expensive than he wanted to pay, but it was something he really wanted.
He carefully opened the box and examined the instructions. A lot of the instructions was about codes to insert into the keyboard and care of the machine. there was not a lot of instructions on the actual use of it.
He finally gets out into his shop and gets material together for a project that would test to capability of his new machine. He plugs it in, keys in the codes in the book, and then hits the on switch. to his shock, the machine unfolds and stands up, like a transformer. It takes the metal bar for his project, clamps one end in his mouth and sticks a toe to the other end. taking hold of a cutting bit, it starts spinning the metal and machines it to the specified diameters. It then stands up, holds the bar in his lap, sticks a bit in the mouth and moves his head around over the metal. It changes the position of the bar and does more work. It finished the work and then sets it on the table, takes cleaning solution and cleans itself up, oils itself down, then sits down. A moment later it had folded itself up to the small shape it was shipped in.
Gimble is in awe that the little machine can do that. he takes out his dream project and starts designing parts and pieces and then watch the little machine work.
After a while, he gets itching to do the work himself rather than have the machine do it. He starts making his own parts, and pieces, letting the little machine sit. He finds he never be quite as good as he hoped, so he starts using the little machine again, fixing his errors and making parts that have to be perfect. After a while, he figures out how to use the little transformer to his best advantage while he is doing as much work as his skills will allow.

As to the question of the week I can honestly say


Posted by Robert Nowall (Member # 2764) on :
I started doing some revision work on an old story...a very old story, from 2007. Worse, uses some unmistakeable imagery from a 1970s movie, and I still can't see a way to get rid of it.

What can I do? It was the story that stood up and demanded attention, so it's getting it. Well, I'll finish the revisions and bury the story, then move on to something newer, I hope.

Posted by BenM (Member # 8329) on :
Another 9k this week, bringing the wip to a little over 65k and almost 50% of the way through. Wrote some scenes that I loved (and found hard to write) and some scenes that will probably need more work in the editing stage. Still constantly battling with schedule (darn it, wouldn't it be nice to stay up late some nights?) but happy to be getting so much done.
Posted by Meredith (Member # 8368) on :
Yes, I did.

Finished this round of revisions to DREAMER'S ROSE.

Made good progress on the first draft of SEVEN STARS (up to chapter 9).

And two blog posts.

Posted by Wordcaster (Member # 9183) on :
Family situations took precidence, but I wrote half of a short story.
Posted by Crank (Member # 7354) on :
I wrote at least 2K new words, and covered quite a bit of editing ground as well.



Posted by Lissa (Member # 9206) on :
Posted by LDWriter2 (Member # 9148) on :

Yes, I wrote.

Not only on my three novels which I discussed on one of the groups but also on a short story that has been sitting unfinished on my laptop for at least four months. I might have done by Friday.

And I worked on redoing another story for WotF.

And I did some blog posts but that may have been last week.

I need to update my adventures this Valentine's Day and more on my thoughts on rather a certain book I'm reading was ghost written.

Even though not as many as usual I did a few posts on this site.

Posted by pdblake (Member # 9218) on :
9k last week altogether. Mor than half way through a 120k first draft
Posted by rstegman (Member # 3233) on :
Finished my backwards pass through the story. I eliminated 1100 words!!!! Will get with a friend and torture him by reading some of it to him. I now have to go back the other way to see how the flow goes.
This backwards pass makes you look at the passage alone, not the flow of the story. You see things that you gloss over when you are following the flow.

Too bad this work is still too big. I just don't see any scenes that are not story.

Posted by Josephine Kait (Member # 8157) on :
I wrote a 4pg journal entry in the journal that only sees the light of day every few months. Not much, yet still something. I'm in the "yes" column.
Posted by Tiergan (Member # 7852) on :
Yep. Not as much editing as I wanted. But spent time all the same.

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