Tuesday, April 1, 2014

I Never Liked Progress Reports in School...

Yesterday, I got quite a lot done in general, and still managed to write about 1,500 words to loosely start off my next short story.  This one is a Fantasy tale, one in a series of short stories leading up to and surrounding a novel in the same universe.

After I finished the second draft of my Science Fiction short story, I decided to give it a break before taking another stab at it.

I keep a deck of large index cards in an envelop on my desk.  Each card is blank on one side, and on the other is written a quick synopsis of a short story.  I go to my partner and ask him to pick one blindly.

That's the next story I am writing.

I know I won't be able to do things this way forever; there will come a time where I have deadlines on specific pieces and will no longer have such luxuries, but for now, I embrace the process.

My biggest problem when I'm ready to start the next story is choosing which one is worth the attention.  As a writer, all of my tales are precious to me.  And, since I used to lack the time to actually sit and write, I have quite a backlog of story ideas.

Each of the short stories from my cards is fully fleshed out in what I call Beta Draft.  I use this term as a title for the combination of written notes and mental imagery I have for each story, before I start Draft 1 (Alpha Draft). 

Picking a card and sticking to it has given me an immense amount of structure, which I desperately needed.  Focus is key.  That, and a whole lot of self belief.

Never Give up on Your Dreams,


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