Someone actually started a similiar topic in the bootcamp alumni thread and it took off for a little while. This is the place for people to publicly make a commitment to reach a goal in x amount of time or by x date. When that date comes around, you will need to answer to everyone as to whether your reached that goal or not, and if not you better have a good excuse!
I will start with my personal goal of finishing the rewrite of my murder mystery novel, which should be something like 80-90k words, by Halloween. (I'm actually hoping to do this by the fifteenth, but I'm only promising the 31st.) At that time I will set editing/polishing goals.
I hope others will join me in publicly voicing goals so we can all cheer you on.
Sister of Betrayal (spelling?) next draft done by September. The short stories Scott's Organs,Friend or Food (working title),Green Bottles (working title), A Tree's Wisdom (working title) done, editted, and sent out by same time.
Gosh, Phanto, that's what I call productivity.
One thing I've found out about myself is that I'm a pretty slow writer. I rewrite a lot, becasue it takes me a long time to figure out what I'm tyring to say. Thus, I don't have any goals in that sense--goals on when to finish a project. It's done when I can't do anything to make it better.
My only goal is to write every day, which I've been doing with complete success since I started keeping a notebook. I suppose in my mind my goal is to complete a short-story a month--but I've never made it an "official" goal.
[This message has been edited by Balthasar (edited August 15, 2004).]
This is a good idea. I like it. (Off topic, I've been reading Preacher, which is another good idea, and I feel like mentioning that if this board was a little less censored, I would have included an expletive. Don't know why. Perhaps because I've been reading Preacher.)
I can't promise anything, because unless they're made face to face, I've a tendency to break promises, (it's just the way I'm wired), so instead, I'll post my most relevant New Year's Resolutions, to be completed by the end of the year
--a completed first draft of my novel in progress
--at least one short story ready for sumbissions (done), and five more in some various stage between first draft and completion. (Also done. Sort of.)
--Lose 30 pounds (yeah, right. ). I think this is relevant because like OSC says, healthy body, healthy mind.
That's them, and I'm doing my damndest to make sure they're done. Except for the third one.
[This message has been edited by cvgurau (edited August 15, 2004).]
Like Balthasar, I work very slowly. This is because my stories evolve as I write. POV's shift, characters morph into different characters and sometimes even different creatures. The first draft of anything is often only a stepping stone to something totally different, something that may be nearly unrecognizable as the same story.
It's done when I really, really, really like it. So, with that I will promise only that I will finish the 2nd Draft of "bad Wishes" by the end of September. (This thing is really making major changes).
I've been pushing to get my Ghostridden, my current novel WIP, done by Worldcon... what is that now? Eeek, September 2. Well, I made the vow at the beginning of August, and I've done another fifty-ish pages since then, leaving me with five chapters and somewhere in the fifteen to twenty thousand words range. Doable, if I keep pushing at it.
And then I will sleep. And there will be much rejoicing. And then I will start plotting the next one in earnest, and editing this one, and the bookfog will come back in season.
I have a short story I've been putting off rewriting, so I've posted the first 13 today and (cross my fingers and creek don't rise) I'll have a rewrite I can offer for reading by the beginning of October.Thanks Christine I needed a kick in the butt on this one.
Posts: 397 | Registered: Mar 2004
Are we keeping the writing promise report forum active? Because if we are, I am pleased to report that I finally finished the current novel, despite the extreme anxiety and self-doubt which seems to hit near the end of anything I can't convince myself is unimportant. (How did I deal with it? I kicked myself and my laptop out of my apartment and didn't allow myself back in until it was done, that's how. Tough love. And burrito. And tea.)
Now, to the second part of my promise: the sleeping. *conks out, despite it being pitifully early*
Actually, Gen, I think it would be a good idea to not only make promises on this thread (or on a new forum, I guess), but to keep everyone apprised of them. I don't have any updates, but still.
Posts: 552 | Registered: Jan 2002
For a few years now I've been haunted by memories of junior high. Don't ask--I don't know. They just won't leave me alone. In fact, too many of my stories eventually become stories based on junior high. After reading an old interview with Harlan Ellison and an old interview with John Gardner, I realized--no, I think I finally accepted the fact--that sometimes we have stories that we MUST tell, and I saw that junior high for me was a kind of mythical history that, for whatever reason, I need to explore.
after much thinking, I decided to write a memoir of junior high (which is perhaps why I was interested in starting a nonfiction thread). I don't expect anything from it right now, because right now all I can do is write down the memories as they come. The story--if there is one--comes later.
Anyway, I've found that each night I can write down about 2000 words (10 pages) of memories, so that's my new goal. Though I don't know for sure, I'm projecting that the first draft will be between 600 and 700 pages.
So, needless to say, I'm not writing much fiction now adays . . . at least not for a few months.
[This message has been edited by Balthasar (edited August 30, 2004).]
well, I followed up on the short story - it only took a total of 14 months after server failures, mails going missing etc. Not sure if its a record.
I got a rejection, but it was a very nice rejection and quite heartening. It still feels wrong to say "a very nice rejection", but the editor was very complimentary and it was firmly on the "It's not perfect for us" rather than the "this is garbage" side.
To quote (and salve my bruised ego) "I'll have to return it, with genuine regrets." He also invited me to try them again soon.
So now I just have to find somewhere else to submit it and get back to writing. I'm pleased on the whole as I don't write many shorts (and my shorts arent that short to begin with).
I always seem to make myself promises regarding my writing, but I break them within what, a week, from making them. So hopefully by putting my goals/promises to myself out in the open, it will force me to actually see them through. So here goes:
1. Get the first draft of my short story finished by mid-october (I've seen others of you say you can get a draft for a short done in one sitting, but I'm incredibly slow so I'm giving myself a good range of time ).
2. Complete a draft of my novel, which currently has no title, during NaNoWrMo.
3. Hey, I'd like to loose a little weight too.
4. Actually come up with titles for both my short story and my novel.
By way of report the sandwich was delicious, I haven't even met a shadow of 'Winston' But my Collaborator has returned ahead of Schedual and we're getting the engine started on it. Also our usless comedy is really shaping up.
Posts: 1895 | Registered: Mar 2004
An addendum (if I may): keep typing, don't stop, don't look at the watch, and don't look back. See the finish line, and make that mad dash to cross it, then nitpick the particulars. Don't fuss over the fact that 100 pages in you haven't introduced an antagonist, or a major conflict (other than Ethan's burning desire to get home). Ignore the 65K words you'll have to throw away because of major developments in the first few chapters. It wasn't time lost, it was time invested. You had to go through there to get here.
Just get it finished.
By New Year's. (<----This is me, talking to myself. That's not right.)
I know I'm new here and I sort already posted my goals but I thought I'd do it here to.
1) Finish ANYTHING by the end of the year. This includes 1 short story (working title - Joker and Thief), 1 poss. novella length work (working title - The Great Crossing), 2 novel ideas (no pun intended) that need further plot development, and two screenplay ideas that need development also.
2) Submit something to publication!
Reward? That I can have this baby this spring without any guilt that I'll have less free time for a while.
Well I think it is time that I put something down here. I want to finish the latest draft of my novel by the end of the month, and by the end of October I want to finish rewrites of three of my short stories and submit them to publishers.
Okay, new guy weighing in. I've got a writing contract with a deadline in a month for a roleplaying game supplement. My first published work, and I'm making my goals here to avoid resting on my laurels.
I'll have a short story ready for submission by next February.
[This message has been edited by DeepShadow (edited October 05, 2004).]
My old promise was to complete my revision of my novel by the end of October. Well, as of today I am within the last 5k words or so. (I'm in the middle of the climax chapter and then I have some denouement.)
I am still hoping to complete that promise, nevertheless, I feel the need to insert a new promise in here:
I promise to have a once-through revision of this novel completed by the end of this month so that I can write the last couple of chapters. (I've missed something somewhere...the character change isn't set up right or something...I don't know where it broke down but I've got to go back and find it. )
I then make the following promises regarding this work:
1. That I will send the novel to my parents to read during the month of November, while I'm writng furiously on another novel. 2. That I will *SLOW DOWN* and comb through every chapter, every page, and find the strongest way to present material, even if this means rewriting sections of the novel to make it more believable/more interesting/less confusing/less obvious (if that's the case...this is a mystery, after all) 3. That I will start researching publishers and agents but will not submit this novel before it is as good as it can be, including story and wordsmithing. 4. That I will not impose schedules on myself because that's the best way to get my novel thrown in with the other 99.9%. If this takes until October next year to get right, then so be it!
Strange that I am actually taking away set goals and the like, but lately I've realized tha these set goals are forcing me to write crap. (excuse the language) My novel got broken somewhere (that was passive voice...I broke it, actually.) and it might still have happened if I had slowed down and thought about things a little more as I wrote. (Maybe...maybe no.)
Starting in November with National Novel Writing Month I am going to work on novel #2 and I think this will help. Every day my goal is to work on one or the other, whichever the muse strikes me to do. I have a feeling that at first it will be novel #2 because I'm frankly getting sick of the other one, but then again maybe that just means I need to leave it be for a few months and come back to it with a fresh eye.
Thanks for letting me rant, guys! (not that you had much choice. I suppose if you complain loudly enough Kathleen will erase this message... )
Ok, this sounds like a good idea. I have found recently that whatever amount of time I think is reasonable, plus some extra for padding, is never enough to complete things. Thus, I am being exceedinly generous so I may actually accomplish something in the time frame I set for myself.
Uh, I mixed in other writing responsiblities that are taking over my life, hope that's ok.
08 Oct 04 - Complete and submit abstract to go to meeting in Salt Lake City in Feb: DONE. Check. Yea! 22 Oct 04 - Complete discussion section of manuscript and send to my advisor 30 Oct 04 - Decide which story to write and think about it 11 Nov 04 - Begin writing story 17 Dec 04 - Complete all data taking for thesis project, whether it works or not and leave for Christmas 04 Jan 05 - Complete story in hand upon return from lovely, very long, and well deserved x-mas vacation 31 Jan 05 - Have story in final form 01 Feb 05 - Start making presentation for meeting 19 Feb 05 - Have another story idea 20 Feb 05 - Go to meeting 01 Mar 05 - Start writing story 30 Jun 05 - Have 2nd story in hand, first draft complete
By end of November, I will 1. Rewrite my current WIP, "Phoenix's Tale" 2. Finish my current short story, "Orpheus". 3. Read a lot of history books so I have background for my next short stories/poems. 4. Work out what I'll be doing next year at the same time (trickier, involves finding a post-grad program that will accept me)
Should be enough, and was never good at deadlines anyway.
back again at last - albeit briefly I expect. I kind of had to drop off the face of the earth for a while there and all my plans are currently up in the air as my daughter - due at the end of October - arrived four weeks early (so as to disrupt her brother's birthday party, I suspect). She's still in the hospital, although I am home six days now, but she is out of the ICU and well on the road to recovery. Between trips to the hospital, minding our son and trying to stay sane, I haven't been doing much of anything and seem to have an attention span reduced to something akin to a gnat's! I've just started writing again myself. It's very fragmentary.
I don't think I have anything yet to crit, but if I do have something of yours and haven't replied, let me know. I'm sorry if that is the case and will try to get back to you eventually, but things being what they are right now, it will be a while.
When I get everything back on track, and Emily home, I'll be back. That's my promise for now.