Topic of the Night: New Writing Focus.
I’ve been working on trying to get focused back on my writing. I have three issues of Smith’s Monthly ready to be put together, but WMG Publishing is slow on that at the moment, so I slowed down as well. Now I have a hunch WMG will ramp into the work I have given them, so I need to stay ahead if I plan to get Smith’s Monthly back on schedule.
So here is the plan. I know this is sort of tempting the world to toss things in the way, but here is how my thinking is going. Might want to detail out this same sort of thing for yourself when trying to ramp up your writing for a time. (Warning: There is math involved.)
The Real World Tasks
First, I looked at the outside stuff I want to do. Our new store will be opening in late May and I want to do a lot of work there because it’s great fun.
I also have two workshops to record through May. They are all detailed out, but just not recorded yet and that takes time.
So that’s the two major tasks plus my normal work as WMG Publishing CFO.
I looked hard at all that and I think I can still carve out my normal writing time from midnight onward. Maybe earlier when I get into June.
I want to first off get Smith’s Monthly back on schedule. My writing isn’t far off on that, but I need a month or two of two novels per month to get ahead again.
I also want to try once again the craziness of Stories from July in July, so no novels that month because I will be firing at 31 short stories again.
So with looking at all that, here is how I figured the real world could combine with a reasonable writing schedule to get me through the rest of the year.
DEAN’S WRITING SCHEDULE FOR THE REST OF 2016
— Finish Death Takes a Partner by May 15th
— Finish a new novel by June 1st
— Finish a new novel by June 15th
— Finish a new novel by June 30th.
— 31 short stories in July.
— Finish a new novel by August 15th
— Finish a new novel by September 1st
— Finish a new novel by September 15th
— Finish a new novel by October 1st.
— October has both some travel, since I will be a keynote speaker at a conference plus teaching for a week at the Master Class here, so one new novel in October.
— One new novel in November.
— One new novel in December.
Summary of Schedule
Eleven novels between now and January 1st, plus the short stories in July. Actually a pretty reasonable schedule for me.
If this seems excessive, just do the math.
Most of my novels are around 50,000 words, maybe less. So in 15 days I need to average over 3,000 words a day. (In July I will average more than that with the short stories.)
It takes me about three hours of writing to do 3,000 words on average, more in the opening of a novel, less later in the book.
So if I make myself get to my writing computer by 12:30 to 1 a.m. or so every night, I’ll be fine. Anything written earlier will be a bonus.
Also, I have had many, many months in the last few years of doing this well beyond 100,000 words of fiction, so this isn’t breaking any new ground anywhere with that either.
Issues With This Plan
There are always the unforeseen issues that arise, but I can’t worry about them, just deal with them as they arise.
But issues I can see are schedule disruption. That is a killer for me these days. Things like jury duty and getting up in the middle of my night just knock me for a loop for a few days afterwards. So I need to focus on controlling my schedule as much as life will allow me to do so.
Travel and workshops. I have worked both of those into the schedule. Both are in October. Both will knock me off my schedule, so I planned for that.
Those, at the moment are the only two things I can see that will derail this, but again, the unforeseen reality of events of the world will hit at times I am sure.
And I want to take days to go play and see movies and things like that. But I think this schedule builds that in just fine as well.
So we shall see.
Plan Your Year Now
There is a real reason to plan your writing year like I just did right now. The time of great forgetting is coming up fast. Plan the writing, plan the activities like a workshop or reading that will get you from here to August with a focus on writing and words done.
A main reason I just did this tonight is because of the new store. I love playing with collectables and if I let myself, that’s all I would do for the next three months and then regret it in August.
So I’m set with real deadlines.
Join the fun. Set your deadlines to get through this coming three months and to the end of the year.
You’ll be happy you did.
Now, here I go. Right out here in public. If nothing else, this might be interesting to watch. (grin)
The Writing of Death Takes a Partner: A Mary Jo Assassin Novel
Day 1.. 2,100 words. Total words so far… 2,100 words.
Day 2.. 4,400 words. Total words so far… 6,500 words.
Day 3.. 4,200 words. Total words so far… 10,700 words.
Day 4.. 2,150 words. Total words so far… 12,850 words.
Day 5.. 2,200 words. Total words so far… 15,500 words.
Day 6.. 2,050 words. Total words so far… 17,550 words.
Totals For Year 3, Month 9, Day 28
Writing in Public blog streak… Day 953
— Daily Fiction: 00 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 24,100 words
— Nonfiction: 00 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 1,800 words
— Blog Posts: 900 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 17,900 words
— E-mail: 12 e-mails. Approx. 400 original words. E-mails month-to date: 541 e-mails. Approx. 36,200 words
— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 1 Covers
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