I haven’t been posting a whole lot of writing-oriented posts on my blog lately, since I was in the middle of releasing the Glitch saga, but I know a lot of you out there are writers and are interested in improving your writing or publishing process.
So I have two questions I’d like to ask you. 🙂
- What would you like to know more about the writing process?
- What would you like to know more about publishing?
Comment below, and I’ll see about covering those topics a bit more in the future (or point you to where someone has done it better than I can). 🙂
9 responses to “Thoughts on Writing and Publishing – Help Me Help You”
Do you have a daily word count you like to hit? Or are you more of the ‘let the inspiration flow’ school of thought?
I try to reach a certain word count daily/weekly, when possible, and I make note of how much time I spend doing each task related to writing so I can see where I’m spending my time. (Chris Fox’s “5000 Words Per Hour” gave me the idea of keeping track… and that’s been useful. Last I checked, it’s free if you sign up to his newsletter).
As for what my actual goals are, it depends on the project and what I’m expecting for that day (if I know I have other events planned, I know I might not reach my general daily goals).
I know what my average word count is per hour, so I know that I can usually reach a certain count per number of hours when it comes to a rough draft. (In general, I can get 1500-2000 words in an hour. I tend to write in 30-40 minute “sprints,” depending on the project). For revising/editing, it depends on whether I’m doing heavy-duty revisions or just making minor tweaks.
How about you? 🙂
I have a few quirky, slightly odd things I do in my writing process. Do you have any or have heard of anyone with some strange process?
Can you give an example? 🙂
I’ve heard of various things in regards to things people do with writing. It can be real-world related, from things like always making sure they have their cup of coffee on hand before they start writing to making sure specific music is playing.
It can also be little quirks in the manuscript itself. For example, I tend to write “PRINTPRINT” wherever I left off last, so I can find my spot again. I have to search before I finalize the manuscript to make sure none of those are still lying around.
Or are you referring to those little things we tend to do in writing that we edit out later? (Like my overuse of the structure “He did this, then…” )
All kinds, especially the more ritualistic, unique sort of things that may seem bizarre to others. I love learning about the processes of other writers. Like I always need to talk about my idea for hours out loud, preferably to others but it’s sounds like crazy rantings so I have a tough time finding people willing to talk to me more than once. My dog doesn’t mind though! Then, when I jot the outline, I listen to a few very strange avant-garde type bands. (my family hates it) as far as quirks in content, I tend to take cliché idioms and play with the words often to make them ironic. I also reference myself often. I’ll repeat the same metaphors in separate works and often let the reader know that I know I’m being lazy and redundant. I have a very ornate and pompous prose style though. It matches my personality and very erratic behaviour. There’s so much more. Oh! One more thing, I’m from NYC, however, I use British English in my writing. I don’t know how or why I picked up the habit. Probably because I grew up reading English poetry and just assumed the words were in the appropriate style for Americans, as well.
I think all writers tend to have some quirk that they do, whether they know it or not. I think the key thing is not to let it get in the way of your writing. (Some writers have to have everything exactly one way before they start writing, which means nothing ever actually gets written). When not taken to an extreme, however, it can be useful for setting that “This is my writing time” mood.
As for British versus American English, like you said, if you read a lot of English poetry or English prose, you probably picked up those grammatical styles as well. Hence the tendency to write one or the other. Just be aware that if you go the traditional route, the publisher may choose to change it to match their house style, and if you go the self-publishing route and your audience is primarily American, some readers may comment on “typos” that are simply a case of a difference in British versus American English.
I’ll listen to music if I’m having a hard time trying to get a certain mood in a scene, or if I’m plotting. (And that ranges the gamut… everything from filk to techno). 🙂
Oh, yeah. Absolutely. I’ve actually been writing now since around 6am yesterday none stop and I can’t really see very well right now so I suppose it’s time to rest.
Taking breaks is a good idea. You don’t want to forget to take care of yourself. Otherwise your body rebels and then you don’t get anything done, not just writing.
Yeah. It sucks.