Wednesday, March 31, 2010

First Draft Finished

March Madness is over and I reached my goal for the month. The first draft of my MG humor for boys is officially done. Now it must rest for a few weeks before I dig into the revision.

I learned a few things about myself this month:

I can write 1000 words a day for a week
I can write 2000 words in one day
I can write when I'm up two hours early
I can write in the late afternoon

I'm beginning to sound like a Dr. Seuss book.
Must stop now.

WHAT I'M READING THIS WEEK: The Witch of Blackbird Pond (E.G. Speare) Girlfriend Material (M. Kantor) The Perks of Being a Wallflower (S. Chbosky)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Working Through A New First Draft

It's been three years since I've finished a first draft and in that time I've gained so much knowledge about the craft of writing fiction.

When I started my latest project, I wondered how different the first draft experience would be from the first time.

I had a blast writing my "first" first draft. Every moment was pure pleasure. Or shall I say completely self-indulgent. When it came time to revise, I had to chuck out the majority of what I'd written. OUCH!

This first draft is different. I'm still having some fun, but as I write, I keep in mind the many principles of storytelling that I've learned. I also make marginal notes to remind me of scenes that need more work, things that need to be researched, threads that need to come earlier.

After I finished my first novel, I went through it twice to check the grammar and spelling and thought I was done. The idea of changing anything about the characters or story seemed absurd. Ah, to be so naïve. Thank heaven for critique partners.

Since then, my attitude toward revision has changed and I can't wait to finish this first draft so I can roll up my sleeves and dig in.

Which do you prefer, the first draft or the revisions?

WHAT I'M READING THIS WEEK: Tuck Everlasting (N. Babbitt) Before I Die (J. Downham) Leviathan (S. Westerfield) Someday This Pain Will Be Useful To You (P. Cameron)

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Book Binge

Three days, six novels. Must come up for air. Is there an overreader rehab facility out there?

WHAT I READ IN THE PAST 72 HOURS: The Chosen One (C.L. Williams) Lovesick (J. Coburn) A Crooked Kind of Perfect (L. Urban) The Adoration of Jenna Fox (M. Pearson) Shug (J. Han) Splendor (A. Godbersen)

Monday, March 8, 2010


In January I made a deal with a fellow writer to swap completed manuscripts by the 15th of February. We did it! Last week I posted about my decision to join Denise Jaden's March Madness. One week later I've made tremendous progress on my secret project. I hope to have the first draft finished by the end of the month.

It's amazing what we can accomplish when we set goals. It helps to have someone or something motivating us to achieve them. Checking in with other writers each day has been a huge help.

What about you? How do you keep motivated?

WHAT I'M READING THIS WEEK: Growling Eyeballs--Escape of the Mini-Mummy--Itty Bitty Brothers (Books 1-3 in the Who Shrunk Daniel Funk Series by Lin Oliver)

Monday, March 1, 2010


Today I set a goal for the month of March. I put it in writing in front of over a dozen witnesses. Why? Because sometimes I need to be accountable to someone other than myself.

Thanks to Denise Jaden and her March Madness, I hope to finish the first draft of my WIP by the end of this month.

If you need a motivating nudge, here's the link: Denise Jaden's livejournal

Here's wishing everyone a joyful and productive March!

WHAT I'M READING THIS WEEK: After Tupac & D Foster (J. Woodson) Peace, Love & Baby Ducks (L. Myracle) Hush (J. Woodson)