Monday, August 1, 2016

Making Writing A Habit I Can't Kick - Week 3 Analysis

I am definitely making progress.

Admittedly my Week 2 Analysis just went up on Saturday, July 30th (a week late) but at least it was posted!

As for the writing, that has been an interesting adventure in and of itself. Claire gave me that wonderful challenge of 6,000 words and/or 6 hours of writing a day, which made for some fun times, I'll tell you. Boy, did my inner critic have a field day last week.

I digress.

Here it is. Week 3 analysis - The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

The good, the bad, and the ugly - that's how I'm going to break this post up.

Let's start with the goals for the week - In order to meet my target of having the ugly rough draft of Rogue Master done by July 31, 2016, my goals for week 3 were:

  1. Write every day
    • Add a minimum of 6,000 words a day to the manuscript using any means necessary - free write or transcribe;
    • and/or spend a minimum of 6 hours every day working on adding new words to the manuscript
  2. Post two blogs per week
    • one post should be the Weekly Challenge Analysis;
    • second should be on any other subject I want
Review of Goals:
The Ugly:
I failed on goal #2 for posting on my blog. Yes, I did finally post my Week 2 Analysis, but not until Saturday, July 30th - which was the end of Week 3 and an entire week after the post was due.
And, I didn't get a second post written - So a big fat 0 for that goal.

Based on the fact that I was actually able to post to my blog every day for Week 1, I should feel bad about this - and here's the really Ugly part: I don't feel guilty.

It is true that during the first week I was able to post every day - yet, let's be serious about this - they were boring posts. Boring I tell you! A regurgitation of information totally yawn-worthy.
(And yes, I swiped these pics from a fellow author, Candace Blevins off Facebook - pay attention to the last one!)
photos property of Candace Blevins
IMHO, adding more posts like that would have been a waste of my time and the readers' time.

The Bad:
For this goal, the bad is that the weekly analysis is probably going to run a close second in the yawn-worthy contest, but I'm going to keep posting them, so I can analyze my progress; keep those interested up to date about my projects/WIPs; and to satisfy my science research geek CP, Claire Jane.

Which means, at lest one post a week is definitely going to be a "blah-blah-blah" kinda thing. Feel free to ignore it if you so choose.

The Good:
Here's the good about this blog posting goal - I'm going to put out a request to you, the readers, to feel free to comment on what you'd like to hear from me. That way, I have a jumping off point to work from and you might actually get to see what you want --

If all else fails and all I get is crickets chirping, I'll dig out some unfinished scenes or deleted scenes for you to enjoy. That way they get shared, you get a peek at my weirdness, and I get to check off one of the items on my weekly "To Do" list. Awesome!!

Now, on to goal number one adding 6,000 words a day to complete the ugly rough draft of Rogue Master.

The Ugly:
I suck. But, I'm not angry at myself. And why do I suck, yet I'm not angry at myself? I suck because I did not finish the ugly rough draft of RM. What I did do was get an end word count on Friday, July 29th of 80,008 words, which was 5,008 words more than I'd planned (considering I'd revised my goal from 90,000 to 75,000 in Week 2) - which is why I am not angry at myself.

How can I possibly be angry when I made progress? It's so funny thinking about this. If you read any of my early Week 1 posts, you would recognize what a bitch I can be to myself. I set such high expectations for myself that I think I do it just so I can fail! So I'll have a reason to be angry at myself and call myself names and point out all my failings. And does that help me in any way? No. Does it inspire me to push harder to succeed? Hell to the No! Like I said last week, biggest take away I've gotten so far from this Writing Challenge, is to accept that things are what they are and move on. The past can't be changed, and dwelling on it only limits your potential for greatness in the future.

Learn the lesson and move on!

The Bad:
I didn't write a minimum of 6,000 words a day, nor did I put in 6 hours minimum a day on my writing. This, I am a little disappointed in myself over, yet, I'm fully embracing Claire's "It is what it is" philosophy. 

I didn't reach that goal, but that doesn't mean I can't keep trying.

The Good:
The good about this particular goal failure is that it wasn't really a failure. And it's all in the wording of the goal: "a minimum of 6,000 words"

See, that is the part I get to do my happy dance about and say "nanna-nanna-boo-hoo" to my inner critic, because, while I only added 3,400 words on Saturday, July 23rd, and 2,119 words on Sunday the 24th; On the 25th I did 8,955 words; the 26th was 8,907 words; the 27th was 7,388 words (as well as 1,382 words for my blog); the 28th was 7,047 words - after 5 hours at the day job and a killer migraine; and the 29th was 6,767 words - A grand total of 44,583 words (not including my blog) which averaged out to 6,369 words a day. (*Phft* to you nasty inner critic!)
So what if I only spent a total of 32.08 hours on the manuscript. That's an average of 4.58 hours a day - still enough hours to be considered a full-time worker at some businesses.

Bottom line:

I did a FUCKING amazing job!!

Happy dance, cuz I love Donald O'Connor & Gene Kelly
gif courtesy of
In Week 3, I transcribed 21,805 more words than I did in Week 2, and invested 15 more hours to my writing (free write and transcribe) than in Week 2.

Ironically, while I again had no restrictions on my allotted social media time, comparing Week 3 numbers to Week 2 numbers I spent:
  • 4.9 hours less on Facebook
  • 2.6 hours less on Twitter
  • 9.9 hours less on email
Yet, I spent 4 hours more on my blog (darned redesign and analysis).

That's a total of 11.7 hours less social media time. Funnily enough, it seems the drawback to that reduced time, was the loss of 5 "Followers" on my Facebook Fan Page. Then again, Facebook has issues sometimes that I still have yet to decipher.

Overall, I would say there was much more good that came out of Week 3 than bad.

Moving forward, things are going to be more challenging simply due to the nature of the point I'm at in the writing process for Rogue Master.

Week 4 and possibly Week 5 are going to be completely focused on reading through what's been transcribed and editing it to meet the modified story paradigm. I have approximately 15 new scenes that need to be written, so my focus is going to be more on the hours invested rather than word count - although word count is still going to be a great measuring tool since I'll be able to see how much I cut away from the old scenes and upgrade them to meet the new story.

Plain and simple, Week 4 goals are:

  1. Complete ugly rough draft of Rogue Master
    • add a minimum of 6,000 words using any means necessary - free write or transcribe
    • spend a minimum of 6 hours working on editing, writing, or polishing the ugly rough draft
    • report daily updates on social media - Facebook and Twitter
  2. Add word count to any other/new manuscripts
    • add a minimum of 6,000 words using any means necessary - free write, transcribe, outline, plot, etc. (to be considered part of goal 1 daily word count)
    • spend a minimum of 6 hours working on outlining, plotting, writing, transcribing, reading through old manuscript copies (to be considered part of goal 1 daily hours)
  3. Post to blog at least twice a week
    • 1 post = Weekly writing analysis due no later than the following Monday
    • 1 post = any subject that comes to mind or reflects posted reader interest/requests
Pay close attention to that very last goal, because I'm putting the ball squarely in your guys' court! I need subjects people!! Or you're going to end up with teacher-speak, lectures about character development; learning styles; plotting; the difference between the Care Package, Plot Protagonists, and Story Protagonists (you'll end up with this one anyway because I'll be posting about the class I'm teaching online with HCRW....)

Don't make me use my teacher voice. ;)

Thanks for showing up and have a fan-fucking-tastic day!!!

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