A reblog from a little over a year ago. This flashback is to remind people of the tool that still helps me write. Pinterest. Thanks to blogger/author Shannon A. Thompson my eyes were opened. It has helped my imagination build more descriptive images. In this blog I only mentioned the positives this exercise has promoted. I’m sure there are many that will point out you are not focusing on your most important task, writing. Just remember, don’t get lost on the site and forget to write. The internet can task in procrastination and this could zap writing time. To prevent this from happening try to set a pin limit, e.g., every 5 character/setting pictures you pin you must write a description based on the pictures you found. If you are only using this site to put off writing ask yourself why. Recognize and decide how you are going to move past the problem. Whatever you’re struggling with isn’t going anywhere. It’s best to take action. It’s only writing. You can always come back to scene and edit it later.
Now for my blast from the past post below. Enjoy.
I’ve been trying to write and edit a few novels and I have come across a useful tool to help visualize characters, places, and things. What I was normally doing for my character’s description was trying to write everything I envisioned down in a notebook. Each character would get a page. The page would list physical appearances, personality, and motive. It wasn’t until I saw a post by blogger Shannon A. Thompson called, “Writing Tips: Picture Book” I realized how much detail I was missing by not using this useful tool. Pictures.
I never thought of using pictures to help inspire and build images of characters, places, or objects. I’ve had a Pinterest account for years. When I first signed up I used it a few times but it wasn’t long that I left it having found no use for it. Now I can’t help but think, here was a writing instrument at my fingertips and I…
I believe my new job is eating up my writing time. I am still writing but now I don’t have every waking moment to write. Procrastination and not scheduling my time properly has decreased my word output. It is the same struggle for many authors. They were able to write and publish novels with full time jobs. I guess the problem is I didn’t think it would take me so long to find my schedule. It could be my weekly changing schedule but I have to learn not to set a specific time. I don’t want my blog to suffer. I still believe I can post one article a week so don’t go anywhere. So far, I’ve only missed a week post here and there. All I know, it’s time to learn to take any free time available and write. I just hope my imagination learns to kick in when my fingers hit the keyboard or pen hits paper. Sorry muse but you either show up or I’ll be working alone.
How do you write with a changing work schedule? Do you still find same time everyday works best for you?
I always, seriously, consider participating in the National Novel Writing Month then It’s a few days into November and I realize how my world count is behind. As of today I’m short 10,002 words from being on track to writing my novella. It seems to be a thing a wannabe writer must try once and this year is not my month. I have learned that many who join the NaNoWriMo club prepare character profiles, and outlines before the start of November 1st. It would help to have a jumping off point but I was not prepared. I know you shouldn’t use a project you’ve been working on and should start fresh so I don’t have anyway to start. With my new job I am still trying to organize my time to make sure I get in daily writing time. Did I miss a learning opportunity? With a 50,000 word count goal I think I have waited to long and I’m out. I guess I can consider it next year.
Have you attempted NaNoWriMo? What has been your experience?
I am allowed to dress up for work. I thought this was some freshman prank like the pool on the roof but more co-workers have been talking about their costume and ask if I plan to dress up. I wasn’t originally. I thought since it is a store with a business causal type of dress code I would be festive with some orange, black, and some themed earrings. I am nervous about going all out in a costume. I purchased this Doctor Who dress about two weeks ago but it is back-ordered. I’m disappointed because I was excited about this dress. It’s the 10th Doctor’s suit as an image on the dress. I thought I could looked dressed up without being uncomfortable. I think I should have bought the 9th Doctor’s dress. Maybe he wouldn’t have been back-ordered. So my other option is pirate gear. I could wear a dress shirt under my corset, black dress pants or my ruffled black skirt, maybe a few scarfs and black eyeliner. I don’t feel this will fit in with the business casual dress code. The other’s talk about being mimes, and Arthur characters. I wish I knew sooner so I could plan another costume. Maybe a book/author themed costumed like Jane Austen, Belle, or Some childhood character. Wish I still had my Wednesday Addams’ costume. I rocked that back in the day. Why couldn’t I do Wednesday Addams now. I have checked my closet and I have a black dress. It won’t be a completely Wednesday dress because it has short shelves and I don’t have a white collar. I’ve been thinking I could make one before tomorrow. How authentic do I have to be? I can have the pale skin, red nail polish, and braided hair tomorrow but most important I’ll be comfortable. Will people see Wednesday without the collar? I’ll be sarcastic and if people don’t like it I’ll blame it on the character. (Wink, wink.) Do you get to dress up at work on Halloween? If so what do you plan to be?
I had a dream I was writing a paragraph about fire, ash, and ice but when I woke it faded away. If I had a notebook and pen next to me would I have written it down before I drifted back to sleep. I would probably write in the dark but I don’t think I could read it the next day. Turning on the light could mean not going back to sleep. Staying awake until early morning. dragging my feet until the sun sets and having an unexplained surge of energy. I always argue with the muse. It strikes at the wrong times. I’ve been trying to train it to come when I’m ready. When I have pen/paper or keyboard/screen. Yet, the muse still likes to punish me with inspiration.
I missed the exact words in my dreams but I’ll be playing with those images in my next writing section. I could find that spark that is hidden in my subconscious. Here is to hard work.
“You’re a writer? What do you plan on writing?” The dreaded question almost every writer hates. This line of questioning usually starts with the fact that I majored in Creative Writing in college but strangers really expect a detailed answer. Leave out how many people tell me what a useless degree I got, I have recently taken up the belief that I will not talk about the stories I’m writing. I find some people want the outline to the story you’re writing and to know the publishers release date. Just talking about my story can lead me to doubts or hesitations. If you don’t like the genre I’m writing than say I don’t read that genre but good luck. Don’t say something negative that is based on only your taste. There are many people in this world, you may not like it but the woman sitting across from you on the train may think it’s just the piece of fiction she needed to shake off her hardships of work or life. Also, your suggestions on how I can write my story doesn’t help. If you think you can take my idea and direct me how it should be written you’re wrong. Thanks for the help but I didn’t ask for help. Remember you asked me what I was writing. If you don’t like what I’m doing with my idea then write it yourself. One of my favorite lesson in fiction class was when the teacher would tell everyone to write a page story based on a topic, theme, genre, or scene. No one wrote the same story.
I’m not saying I don’t mind talking to strangers all the time. I’ve met some really interesting people from some friendly, polite conversation. I’ve just learned to expect the questioning but I don’t take everything said to me to heart. Since I’ve been insulted, and praised I will just keep quiet on my future writing plans. I know some will try their best to pry answers out of me but I don’t know you and I owe you nothing.
I don’t know what to write about this week. Sometimes this blog seems so easy. I know what the topic of the week will be and the words come easy. Other times, like now, I can’t seem to fine a theme. When I find myself at this wall I just start free writing. Write anything that comes to mind and see where it leads. It may not advance the story I was hoping to work on that day but I’m writing. Writing and reaching my goal seems to be the only thing that matters. I use pen and paper instead of a computer. I can feel the wall crumble. I may never use what I wrote but never can I say it didn’t help. I have found free writing a great way to get over writer’s block but I still couldn’t think of a blog topic this week.
It’s hard to accept when a show you enjoyed watching announces it’s coming to an end. It’s sad when characters and a world you loved will no longer play out in front of you weekly. Like books, you have laughed and cried with these character’s world. Begged characters not to make a certain choice or cheered at their successes. You’re not expecting them to hear you and change their minds but you know what comes can mean so much from story-line characters development, or the chow crumbling from it’s authenticity. Even clique narratives can have viewers running. Even the ending can have us disappointed. How many series had a build up that ruined everything with the last episode?
As a writer I see many benefits to wrapping up a series on their own terms. No characters are left with cliffhangers unlike most canceled shows. Maybe it can even leave before it becomes stagnate, silly, or “jumps the shark”. I’m sure all of us can name a dozen shows we watched that ended to soon and frustrated you thinking about the closure that never happened. Even when we are later given closure in a movie feature we can feel cheated, angry, or satisfied. Although, there have been few shows that have left me satisfied, I have felt cheated with some series knowing I could never have more time with some characters. I remember a past show I thought destroyed the past series and left me angry. It was as if the writers never watched the show. They threw away rules build into the world over the years making the theme of the show obsolete. For me, it almost ruined the reruns.
I guess I’m trying to say it’s unfortunate to say goodbye but silver lining, there is always fan fiction or spin offs. Maybe.
Has anyone done research for a story and it killed the idea? I have had that recently happened. All I had was an opening scene that was swimming around in my head and I wrote it down but as I finished that scene I thought, “This could be bigger. This could be a novel.” So, I started to research some passed legends and myths to help build the world. It was really helpful when it came to building the character’s personally and look but it destroyed my plot.
I started to outline the first idea with my new found research and my story fell apart. I discovered my idea was weak and I had to scrap my original idea. I’ve since put the story down. I think I have to step away from the narrative so I can distance myself from my old plan. Problem, I can’t help but drift back to the past concept. It’s frustrating.
I’ve been trying way to move on and one solution is to write my first opening scene as a short story. I’m hoping if I give this brainchild a voice I can move on from the first idea and still weave a story from the research.
Have you had this happen? How do you move past broken ideas that seem to be causing trouble with your writing?