Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Best Intentions

All of us have good intentions. We’re going to lose weight, exercise more, eat better and work to be a better person in general. Writers also have good intentions. They want to finish their WIP, hire an agent or take their writing to the next level.

We intend that. That’s our desire. But what are we really trying to accomplish?

To see change, we must change. Or to see a difference, we must be different. Wasn’t it Einstein who said you can’t keep doing the same thing and expect different results? Well, he’s right.

So, let’s change things up a little.

Here we go: I want to finish my WIP and have it ready for Dreamin’, I want to have my short romantic comedy ready to mail out by September 1st, and I want the second book of my series finished by the end of the year.

Lofty? You bet!

Not only do I want these books finished...I want them to be the very best possible work I can do. This is NOT a race.

Here is my plan. You don’t have to follow it, and it might not be for you, but see if there is anything that you can use.

First, I can not and will not set myself a daily word count. I won’t do that. I can set for hours and write crap and call it writing, and that’s what a lot of people who are on word count games do. Not everyone!!! I know some very dedicated writers who do remarkable well on those lists. They simply aren’t for me. Again this isn’t a race.

Second, I write every single day, every chance I get! That said I sneak in as much as I can during the day. I do this by writing two hours before work at least one day a week. Usually Wednesday. Also, I write during three lunch breaks a week. That still gives me two days I can join my co-workers for lunch. One evening a week I stay late at work and write for one hour. Usually Monday. Then when I get home, no matter what, I write two hours. Yes, I set the timer.

Third, I keep my other writing to a minimal. I don’t do a lot of blogging, emailing or loop hopping. Instead, I keep a yellow pad beside my right hand, and when I get an idea or snippet of dialog, I write it down. I still love my cyber buddies, and my chapter friends and everyone else I come in contact with via email. I’m just changing things, so that change will happen.

Lastly, I put aside complete silent, alone time to edit my pages. I don’t do it at work, I don’t do it in front of the TV and I don’t do it in a hurry. I may read/edit a chapter six times before I’m happy with the whole chapter. I have a list of questions I ask at the end of every chapter to see if I accomplished everything I wanted to in that chapter. Also, is there anything I can delete and the reader still understands what I’m trying to convey.

So you ask, what’s changed?

I’m more immerse in my stories, I’m more dedicated to the outcome of my WIP, and I’m amazed at how much easier it is to write when your head is in the game.

I hope this advice helps you a little and you are able to pick up some tidbit of information that will help you make your dreams come true.

Write On!

Geri Foster


  1. Great post, Geri. I too have made positive changes in my writing life which include curtailing online socializing and sticking to my writing schedule. I've also enjoyed writing again in silence and allowing my mind to be free of other clutter. And as Jen recently pointed out, writing begets writing. You're doing an awesome job!

  2. Knowing you, you can get it done--and laugh while doing it! :-)

    I think that's a good "plan". The hardest part about writing is finding what works for you... everyone has their own process and it gets tweaked with each book, but once you find that rhythm, you can rock it! (or rocket...hehe)

    Yoo Cen Doo Eet!