After a crazy week, Facing the Fire is now out and available for you to enjoy. Aili’s adventures continue, and you get to meet some new friends she makes, as well as learning more about her country. Book 2, Facing the Fire, finishes her adventures with the magical artifact she first encounters in Runaway Magic, Book 1.
I’ve already plotted out the third book and I begin writing that tomorrow. She tackles new problems and visits a new forest. Aili is going to experience her first temperate rain forest. So far each forest has been inspired by actual environments I’ve been in, and the next forest is no exception. Canada has a wide variety of ecosystems and I can use them all as inspiration for new places Aili can go.
Our first newsletter went out today as well. Each has a bonus story involving Aili, as well as updates from the last month, and a poll or question that lets me get your opinion on something about the books or the characters.
After working so hard to learn new skills and get the book and newsletter done, it’s time for a quick rest. I’m not stopping writing, I’m just taking it easy for the week. I love adventuring with Aili and that will continue. Normally I will write between 2000 and 6000 words a day. This week I’m going to write however much I want and not focus on anything but telling the story how I like. A rest is a good thing. Unfortunately, Aili hasn’t had a chance to rest in her stories, which means I haven’t rested, either!
I’m always looking to learn more about writing and everything that goes along with being an author. One thing I’m seriously looking into is having a newsletter for my readers, each month. It’s actually easy to do and doesn’t take long.
Why would I want to spend more time not writing? It’s a great way to connect with readers when done well. Also, it’s a great place to share things like bonus scenes and materials with my fans. What kind of bonus scenes?
Well, for those who sign up for my newsletter, I’ve written the scene from Aili’s past, where she survives the fire at the University. There will also be scenes from her childhood like her first camping trip, the scene with the bear mentioned in book 2, scenes of her and Ilia together, and more.
There’s so much I can do and share in a newsletter, so I’m putting stuff together for you all. I’m planning on sending them out at the beginning of each month. You can learn more about what’s going on, what I’m working on, see behind the scenes moments for both me and my characters, and more.
What else is going on? The puppy is settling in and learning when it’s playtime and when it’s writing time. Winter is coming, we got our first real snow last night, and we’re preparing for the change of seasons. I guess I need to finish repairing the winter blankets for the horses! I’m learning more about being an author, newsletters, marketing, and more. Oh, and as always, I’m writing more stories for you, my fabulous readers.
After a couple of days to relax and celebrate, I started back at my normal writing routine today. Things went swimmingly for me. Sometimes a vacation is all we need. I currently have four books on the go, in varying stages of production. The mini vacation did wonders for my focus and desire to write.
The second book in the Forest Guardians series is going into its final draft. I love the characters and getting to send them on adventures in a world of my own creation. Being able to hold a copy of the first book in my hands is inspiring. I’m an actual published author, with actual books out!
The martial arts book is coming along well. I had to refresh my memory, as I set it aside for a few weeks to focus on getting the romance novel out. It was fun going over what I had done and making sure I knew where I was going and how I wanted to get there. The advantage to outlining the major plot points is that I don’t have to worry about forgetting something important. My notes of each major stage of the plot let me pick back up and keep going.
I have a new romance book in the works. It’s roughly outlined, though I still have more work to do. I’m looking forward to turning it into a full story.
Finally, I have a special story on the go. It’s something that speaks strongly to me and a story I need to tell. I can’t say too much about it yet, but I have begun writing now that it’s fully outlined. My beta reader has seen the opening and they want to read the rest.
Anyways, writing is what I love and what I do. Sometimes we all need a quick break. I’m back and ready to go. Here’s to future stories!
Well, I’ve blogged now during my journey as a writer, from starting my first novel and taking it al the way through to publishing. I have another in the final proofreading stage, and the second Forest Guardians book is nearing the third draft. I started back in May, taking writing courses and learning how to be a professional author.
Wow, things have changed, but they’ve also stayed the same in many ways. I’ve learned what works for me and I’ve tried different things, I’ve changed things and abandoned other things. I’ve personalized what I’ve learned To be the best writer I can be.
What’s still the same? Most of my morning routine has remained the same as when I started in May. I get up early, take the dog for a walk, and get myself moving. I have breakfast and meditate, as well as writing in my gratitude journal. Once that’s done, I write.
I take more breaks now and write longer into the day. Sometimes I also work in the afternoon. Of course, it doesn’t feel like work because I love writing. I like to keep my brain fresh so I’ll work for an hour or so, then take a half hour break and do something else. I’m more sustainably productive that way.
I used to be super strict about no technology or social media until I was done writing. I find I actually welcome the mental break between bouts of writing, and I’m more productive if I allow myself the diversion during my breaks. I have self-discipline and don’t use technology to avoid writing, so for me it works really well to allow myself the change.
I work on two stories at once now. I tried three for a while, and that works when one is in the proofreading stage, where I’m only actively writing two stories. I don’t write three at once now. I can, but I prefer to give more attention to two stories instead. I never have only one going, because I do like the variety of a couple instead.
I still do writing courses and learn what I can. I want to be the best writer I can be, so I never stop learning. Also, as an Indie Author (independent and self-published), I have many skills to learn and keep sharp. I love the challenge and look forward to many more books I will write. Will I change things over the years? Most likely. I do what I find works and adjust as I feel is best.
For the past week I’ve had a head cold. Nothing serious, but it has been distracting, for sure. My typing has been a little off and my focus is shorter than normal.
To accommodate my current situation, I’ve needed to make some minor changes to my routine. I don’t sit and work for a few hours anymore without more breaks in between. I drink more tea to stay hydrated. I also stop regularly, every hour or so, and play some video games between to give my focus a break. By changing up what I’m doing, I feel better when I go back to work.
As my books get closer to done, I’m at a fun stage of writing. I’m filling in the story with fun scenes between the main story components. In the erotica novel, I’m in draft three and over halfway done. Now it’s a case of just getting it done, with time at the desk. I spread that out more right now, since my brain is tired with the cold. It works, and I feel better when I go back to work. When I feel better and have more focus, I’ll put in longer bursts over less time again. Until that time comes, I adapt and adjust, making sure I spend time on each book regularly.
Ginger tea, here I come...
I adore writing, I really do. Since writing is my primary occupation, though, I spend a lot of time with my stories each day. Sometimes I find if I work hard on one of them for a while, I start to feel a sort of brain tired when I go to work on it. This is also more likely to happen at two stages. The first is around 30 000 words into my first draft, and the second stage I get it is as I’m getting ready to start my third draft.
It’s one of the reasons I like to have more than one story going at a time. I might have up to three stories, but I do best when I’m only actively working on two, I’ve learned. Hey, do what works for you, and don’t be afraid to try things.
By being able to have a story I’m at a good stage with, when I get writers fatigue on the other one, I can still get some really productive writing in. Sometimes if I work on the productive story first, the story that’s tired also goes better.
I generally also try to work on my young adult novels before my erotica, so I can keep everything well separated in my brain. However, some days things need to be done differently.
So, what is it about the 30 000 word mark and the third draft? Well, usually around 30 000 words the story itself is plotted out. The main scenes are written. Now I need to add the fun and games, and the scenes between scenes. Sometimes they just flow and come to me, and other times I don’t know what will happen. One thing that helps is to remember, write the story I want to read. What would I love to see happen?
With the third draft, I’ve now read my story multiple times. I may love my characters, but sometimes as I’m finishing my second draft, my mind gets tired. Often I set everything aside for a little and come back fresh. I’d rather do a good story than rush just to be done, or because I’m so close.
That’s why I usually have a third story at some stage in the process, like the martial arts story right now. I’m about 20 000 words in. I started it while I was getting the first Forest Guardians book published, before I began the sequel. I didn’t feel right working on the erotica while my first book was so close to done, so it got to sit and rest. Now I’m back at it and close to done, so another story is sitting aside.
It’s great always having something to work on. It suits my short attention span. There’s always something I’m excited to write about in at least one of my stories, so I always look forward to writing another day!
Also, by taking a more relaxed schedule on Wednesdays and Saturdays, where I write when I want with as many breaks as I want, I’m more productive.
After a break from working on the erotica, due to life circumstances, I’m back at it. I did not realize how close to done I really was...
Getting my first book published was a crazy whirlwind of excitement and stress. I will admit, it took a lot out of me, in both time and attention. It was thrilling in an “I did a thing” kind of way. I was exhausted for days.
Now that I know what to do and how to do it, I’m more relaxed about my next book coming out. I can take my time and enjoy the experience more easily without the stress of figuring things out.
I have a few scenes to write and some editing to do, then my first romance/erotica will be available to share with people. It will be published under a different pen name, so my young adult readers don’t encounter materials that aren’t suitable for them. It’s exciting, getting a book out to share with people. Some will love it, some will hate it, but I had fun writing it.
I expect to be ready within a couple of weeks. I’m still working on the sequel and the martial arts book, as I enjoy having different projects on the go. I know from finishing my first book that the excitement of being done means I’m not focused enough to start plotting another novel. Having one already going means I can settle into my routine of writing more easily and keep my momentum going. I do love writing.
Still, ALMOST THERE!
Routines are great. They can help us be better writers, triggering our brain into work mode. However, they can also start to wear us down, too. After the last few weeks, which have been a right proper whirlwind, I felt tired and dragging.
Now is the time to take a break. I could do that by taking a day or more completely off, but I really do love writing. Instead, I’m going to change things up so my brain feels fresh and ready to tackle something different.
I love writing about Aili and her adventures, as well as other characters in other books I’ve got on the go, but today was a good day to focus on editing another book I have close to publishing. The editing is going quickly and easily, a wonderful way to change things up. I still worked a little on Aili’s next adventure, but after that I set my stories aside and pulled out the romance novel. The first half is written and the second half is almost done. It’s more like two related stories, so I can tackle them separately.
I also let myself enjoy a different breakfast, just for pleasure, and didn’t start writing right away today. I’m slowly working throughout the day, giving myself as many breaks as I want. It’s a great way to decompress and relax after everything that went into getting my first book out.
Routine is powerful, but shouldn’t be put ahead of the actual writing. Use it to great benefit, but when you need a break, one way to get it is to let your routine change for a day. Write somewhere new, or at a different time. Enjoy a different drink while you write, or whatever you like.
Now, let your imagination play!
I did it! I finished the third draft of my Young Adult novel. It’s been given to my first reader for feedback.
To be honest, I’m kind of freaking out about it. I’ve been working on this story since the beginning of May. I love the characters and the story is my baby, in a way. I want my writing to be worthy of the place these characters have in my heart. It’s my first novel, so I know I still have a lot to learn, though.
It’s terrifying giving it to someone to read, even someone who loves me and who will be gentle as they tell me what they really thought of it. I may love the story, but will they? I know as they story makes its way in the world, not everyone will love it. I wrote it for myself, so I don’t care so much about that. Still, what if it’s rubbish? He’ll tell me honestly what he feels needs improvement, and I can try again. There’s no way the whole story is irredeemable. There’s something there I can fix if I need to.
Nothing is ever perfect. Many people don’t finish the process because their writing is never good enough. I’m feeling the doubts now, but I know I’m a good writer. I know I can make this story something worth reading. I’m celebrating finishing a third draft, because that’s more than I’ve ever done before. I WROTE A BOOK!
I’ve noticed that the different phases of writing have different energies. The initial stage of the first draft the writing comes fast and furious for me. Sections pour from my fingers as they fly over the keyboard. I can write for hours and the time flies, the ideas flying even faster.
The writing slows down as I add the filler scenes, moments that get us from A to B and add details to the story or the characters. I think more, keeping the whole story in mind and what my reader needs or wants to know, as well as what my characters want to reveal. The physical process of writing is slower as I think about what goes on the page in more detail.
Now I’m in the third draft stage, where I rewrite the book a word at a time. This stage takes a while, even when you just edit the original document, but it’s where you add details and change wordings, bringing the reader into the story instead of just telling yourself what the story was.
This stage is meditative and I’m enjoying it, however, I am noticing some resistances coming up during this stage. Sometimes that little voice of doubt tells me I’ll never finish, even though I’m over half done. I wonder if anyone will ever read my book, even though I wrote it mostly for myself. It’s not hard to push past and keep going, as I’ve learned how to tell the little voice to be quiet, but the little voice is sometimes still there in the background.
Now that both books are in this phase, my writing feels different than when both were In the frantic writing phase. I do have a personal book in the frantic stage, but I never work on that in the morning during my “professional writing hours.” Now my professional writing is calm and quiet, a whole new stage for me to enjoy and explore.
Writing is definitely a journey with many different types of terrain along the way. Between what I explore on the page and what I explore inside, it’s like moving through entire new worlds, both in me and in my head. I don’t regret taking this path for a moment. I have found an inner serenity in my writing that I often get in meditation and martial arts, a quiet place to visit and explore.
I’ve been writing stories for myself for years. Now, I’m a published author. No genre is off limits, though I have some favorites.