Sunday, May 17, 2015

Weekly Writing Progress Report - M4 Week 4

Hi All--

Kudos to myself for actually posting my progress in a timely manner this week! I am now more than halfway done with the first draft of M4. Whooo! Onto the stats!

Week 4
Project: M4 YA Fantasy
First Draft

Word count this week: 10,252
Total word count to date: 40,280

This week in writing:

Another great week of writing! Week four had many ups and downs for me. Sometimes I'd want to write, and other times I really just wanted to stop, so I really had to force myself sometimes and get at least 1,000 words each day with an incentive to do some more so that I wouldn't have that word count staring down at me at the end of the week.

I had a huge moment of doubt thinking that I'd rush a scene too quickly and thought I should go back and fix it up, but remembering my promise to not go back and fix anything and just push on through, I did just that and ignored it. It made the road ahead a bit murky as I started to question the ending, the pacing, and possible plot holes. All this led to me being mentally unprepared on the page some days and making it difficult to write. By the end of the week after talking about it out loud with my boyfriend, I realized my scenes are starting to fall into place. I guess it just goes to show how much we shouldn't get too locked up in our minds.

How I kept up my motivation up during the dreaded middle:

Middles for me is the most difficult part of the story. It's like standing on a cliff and trying to build a bridge to the other side. You gotta make sure the middle is solid, otherwise you'll end up falling and never get to the ending. For M2 I really worked at the middle and things changed so much that my ending kept changing as well. Now when I go into a project I need to know what the ending is first, before I start writing.

  • Read, read, read. By reading good books, it really motivated me to write. It's kind of like a reminder of why I love books in the first place and why I want to write books. This week I set Seraphina aside (still not sure if I should quit it or not) and read some pretty freaking good books.

I love, love, love The Lunar Chronicles
so this one without a doubt was something I couldn't wait to finish.

Found this beauty at the book store this week. 
The cover was just so gorgeous and the book was marketed as a cross between 
Stardust and The Fault In Our Stars,
two of my favorite books, so this one must be good. 
Spoiler: it was!
It's now one of my favorite YA books!

Making time to read whether it was just an hour before bed 
or grabbing a glass of wine at the bar after work was a must.
Look forward to my book reviews this week!
  • Word lists. I've noticed that when I write I tend to used the same words over and over. So sometimes for fun I'll jot down words while reading that I don't often use in my own writing as a reminder to vary my word choice. 
  • Sprint. Not the running kind. But the word kind! Sometimes I'll sit my butt in my chair and write on a piece of scratch paper one hour increments. At the end of each hour I write down how much words I've written and how much words I still need before I can shut down the computer.
    • For example if you sit down for a word sprint for an hour at 1p.m. to 2 p.m. you have to keep writing during this hour. At the end you write down how many words you've written. The basic idea is similar to gym class and improving your mile. But in this case it's trying to improve your productivity per writing hour.
  • Don't make life all about writing. Do other stuff you like to do and take a break from your story. For me, that consisted of hanging out with these two cute fellas, double dates, cooking, and binge watching on t.v. (Like the season finale of Reign! That was so good, I can't even.)

  • Attend some bookish functions. This week I went to a book tour where I got to listen to a panel of debut YA writers talk about the release of their books. Granted I'd never read any of their books before, but I thought it'd be interesting so I decided to go. Notebook in hand, I jotted some inspiration and sage advice, and left buying one of the author's books and getting it signed. How fun!
  • Search hashtags for a boost. Sometimes when I need some inspiration, I look up my fellow writers by searching for #amwriting hashtags on twitter or Instagram. Seeing other people work at it, makes me want to work at it too.
As I head into week 5, I continue to hold my head up high. The finish line is getting so much closer! I am definitely proud of my progress. It's going far better than how M3 was going, which is really what I needed. I just needed to find my stride again and now I'm feeling like a writer (one who actively writes!). But, I am also looking forward to tacking 'The End' and giving myself a break before I start on revisions!

Thanks everyone for the continued support. Onwards to another great week of writing! Share your tricks to keeping yourself motivated in the comment box below.



  1. Woot, woot!
    Reading definitely makes me want to write, too. Unfortunately, it doesn't help me focus, but man, do I ever want to write! I've never thought about browsing the hashtags before. I'm going to try that. And I finally downloaded the First Draft podcast, so I'm going to listen to that, too. I have no idea what motivates me to actually sit down and write. It would probably help if I did. Lol!

    You guys are all so photogenic! ^_^
    I so need to get another cat.

    1. *throws confetti* Love books! Yeah I guess it can be hard to focus when you can't stop reading. Sometimes I have to stop myself and remind myself that there's a world of obligations outside the pages :P Yes, I love searching hashtags. Definitely keeps the motivation up and I always feel inspired by other people constantly writing. How do you like the podcasts so far? Yes! Cats are so cute! You should get a black one ;) No one ever wants them at the adoption agencies :( hahaha I wish I was photogenic!

  2. Great accomplishment! The reading bit is really important for me, but time is hard to find. (Usually it's a choice between reading, writing, or staying caught up with life!)

    Would you say that rereading books might be equally helpful for dissecting stories?

    1. Thank you! Yes I agree, it's so hard to find time. I usually have to squeeze it in while I'm multi-tasking like during lunch breaks or taking a short walk and reading at the same time.

      Yeah for sure. I think rereading is great because you aren't as distracted by the story (since you know how it all ends anyway) giving you better clarity at dissecting the structure of the novel.

  3. Good job! And love the pictures. I've got to get Fairest...totally spaced it was coming out! Here's wishing you a great, continued writing flow.

    1. Thank you! Oh yes, so good! A must read! I guess I should get my book review up!