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Progress Report
GD Deckard
Posted: Saturday, August 11, 2012 8:24 AM
Please accept my condolences, Angela. Take care of yourself.
Nicki Hill
Posted: Saturday, August 11, 2012 9:58 AM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


Oh, Angela, so sorry to hear that.  Take care of yourself; we'll be here when you are ready and able to come back.

Alexandria Brim
Posted: Sunday, August 12, 2012 5:17 AM
Joined: 10/20/2011
Posts: 353


I've posted the last chapter of "The Wedding Game" here on Book Country. If anyone has any suggestions, they would be greatly appreciated (even if I ultimately don't use them) as I head into revisions.
Lisa Hoekstra
Posted: Wednesday, August 15, 2012 5:10 PM
Joined: 5/10/2011
Posts: 89


Angela - I'm so sorry to hear about your father. take care of yourself! 

In response to GD's question:
My writing project right now is Silver Darkness. This book was inspired by Japanese anime/medieval fantasy and the desire to explore a world fundamentally without magic... from the perspective of a highly magical person. I've been working on it for a little over a year and have had many many many false starts. Including the chapter or two that are posted on BC right now.

My editing project is Perchance to Dream. This book was inspired by my best friend & our trip to NYC in 2007/2008... it is NOT a true story (for those people who did read it) and none of the plot is real. The characters are just loosely based on my friend and I.... 

As for my progress. Right now, both books are at a complete standstill. I haven't worked on them in months... I like to say it's because I'm way too busy, but that's just a big excuse... now that I've been a bit more active of BC (in the last two days) the writing bug is taking hold and I'm hoping to get back into it shortly!
GD Deckard
Posted: Thursday, August 16, 2012 9:46 AM
Chapter 14's edited & the next, ch 15, is the last to edit before I begin writing the 2nd half of the story. It's taken longer to do basic editing than I planned but now I've learned some new things, one of them being that real life rarely conforms to wishful schedules. The other is that it's rewarding to apply things I've learned.
Nicki Hill
Posted: Friday, August 17, 2012 12:24 AM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


Progress has been...pretty stagnant lately.  Got a little bit done of what I thought might be chapter 2 of First Comes Love, but I'm not really sure where it's going.  More thought and more outlining is probably desperately needed.  And I hate outlining, so it might be a while.  And it doesn't help that I have yet another project clamoring for attention in my head - a story that has me really excited because it won't follow traditional romance storylines whatsoever.  In fact, I'm rather hoping to eff mightily with readers, in the sense that they'll be so upset that they'll be ready to chuck their computers/ereaders/books across the room in violent anger at me, and that idea makes me ridiculously happy, and that's what makes me want to forget the other two projects and focus on this one.  But then I have no guarantees that it's going to go any better than First Comes Love, so I'm making myself wait until I have the plot more fully fleshed out and can do true justice to it.

On a far more personal note, the hubby and I are in the final stages of becoming approved as a host home for kids (especially refugee kids) transitioning out of foster care and into independent living.  Our pit stop is called supervised independent living, and even though we're not fully approved by the agency yet, our social worker already has a placement for us, so probably within the next couple of weeks we'll be welcoming an 18-year-old Honduran boy into our home until such time as he is ready to be completely on his own/turns 21 and is no longer eligible for services.  It'll be a really interesting life experience, of that I am certain - and I'm sure it'll make for some interesting stories, too.

Atthys Gage
Posted: Friday, August 17, 2012 12:48 AM
Joined: 6/7/2011
Posts: 467


Good for you, Nicki.  I salute you and the spouse for your generosity. 

LeeAnna Holt
Posted: Saturday, August 18, 2012 12:50 AM
Joined: 4/30/2011
Posts: 662


I finished chapter 29 today despite watching my co-worker's 80 pound, 8 month old puppy. It's been exciting, and odd. My dog seems so much more mature when he didn't before.

Nicki, I too salute you for your generosity.
Nicki Hill
Posted: Sunday, August 19, 2012 3:01 PM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


Thanks.  I don't really think of it as generosity - it's just something I've always wanted to do, so it feels like a privilege to finally be able to do it.

I caved and started working on my third project.  I think First Comes Love is just gonna take a back burner for a little while.  It's just...not ready.  It's coming out of my brain like soggy toilet paper, and feels just as much fun to work with right now.  I don't think the characters are developed enough to be able to carry a plot, so that's where my problems are originating.  However, my new characters have been a lot of fun to work with and they just rolled right out onto the page feeling pretty fully formed.  Got the first chapter done in a handful of hours spread out over the last three days, and I think it's gorgeous (could be biased, but it's still nice to feel like something's working for once!).  It's going to hurt so much to write the next chapter...but it's gotta be done, or there won't be a story.


GD Deckard
Posted: Tuesday, August 21, 2012 9:16 AM
ConGrats Niki! We've foster parented the same age group and wish you, your husband & the young man all the best.
Nicki Hill
Posted: Tuesday, August 21, 2012 12:54 PM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


Thanks, GD - and now that I know that, I may be coming on here in the future just to pick your brain! 

Angela Martello
Posted: Thursday, August 23, 2012 8:39 PM
Joined: 8/21/2011
Posts: 394


Have done a little editing of book three (A Kaliphian Matter: Resolutions). Not too, much, though. Have been in a bit of a funk and have been filling the time with watching classic Doctor Who episodes through Amazon Prime (and playing with my shiny new Kindle Fire).

Also in the midst of preparing for a job interview. We had an upsetting re-org at work - but there is an opportunity for advancement and I'd be crazy not to at least try. Have the support of the newly appointed editor-in-chief, so we'll see if the VP agrees. Ah, the corporate world - always something. . .


Laura Dwyer
Posted: Thursday, August 23, 2012 10:11 PM
Joined: 1/10/2012
Posts: 192


Hey, gang. Just wanted to pop in and let you know that while I haven't found much time to write of-late, it is with good reason. Nicki, that's great! Angela, good luck with the interview! And LeeAnna, as usual, keeping up the rigorous pace!
So, my "excuse" for not writing is that my FIL died suddenly on August 1 and since then we've been traveling all over the place for related things. I've dutifully brought my laptop with me on each of these trips, but alas, is has stayed buttoned up. Turns out, this has been so exhausting, I haven't had the energy or creative desire to write. This makes me sad. I'm hoping things will come back to me soon, but in the meantime, I'm glad you're all working so hard!
Nicki Hill
Posted: Saturday, September 1, 2012 11:58 AM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


I've been slowly slogging my way through chapter 2 of The Greatest of These - my goal was to write and post a chapter per week...but that failed in the first week.  I'm such a terrible procrastinator.  At least I feel like I haven't totally dropped the ball, though - progress is progress.

Continuing in the vein of loss, my paternal grandmother passed away on Wednesday and my maternal grandfather passed away early this morning, so for the next week we'll be dealing with funerals.  My mom's parents have been having health problems since April, and she's the only person who's been dealing with all of that (she's single and her only sibling is developmentally disabled), so it's been a really tough summer for her (and then for my brother and me by extension, though to a far lesser extent since we're only dealing with her stress and not everything else that's involved with her family).

Angela Martello
Posted: Sunday, September 2, 2012 10:05 PM
Joined: 8/21/2011
Posts: 394


Sorry to hear about your grandparents, Nicki. It seems it has been a rough summer for lots of folks.

I have part two of the interview this Tuesday, but then have to bring one of my cats (Odin) in for surgery on Wednesday. More concerned about that than I am about the job situation. Odin (formerly known as Prince) had a small tumor on his shoulder when I adopted him almost two years ago. It suddenly got very large. The vet thinks it may just be a benign cyst, but she wants to remove it and biopsy it.

On the writing front, I've made a fair amount of progress in editing/rewriting book 3 of the trilogy. Because of all the changes I had made to books 1 and 2, I have quite a bit of rewriting to do in book 3. Have been randomly reading chapters, bouncing back to chapters in books 1 and 2, then inserting notes with respect to what needs to be rewritten in the relevant places in book 3. This is where Word's "find" feature really comes in handy.


LeeAnna Holt
Posted: Wednesday, September 5, 2012 1:01 PM
Joined: 4/30/2011
Posts: 662


I posted up chapter 28 today and I'm working on 29. I'm almost done with my first round edits. I'm also typing up chapter 30 on my little Skyriter typewriter. I put a new ribbon in, and it's having problems feeding it. So I'm trying to chug along to break in the new spool, which always seems to stick when brand new.

I'm chugging along, trying to get it done. It's going, but more slowly than I want.
Angela Martello
Posted: Friday, September 7, 2012 8:44 PM
Joined: 8/21/2011
Posts: 394


Odin had his surgery; now has a 2-inch long incision on his freshly shaved back. Won't get the pathology report for at least 2 weeks. He seems, well, pissed.

Also, didn't get the job. Have very mixed feelings about that. This has been the summer from hell. Could really do with something truly positive happening in my life.

At least my life isn't as stressful as that as my main characters. . . (though, beginning to wonder why I waste time with the whole writing thing. . .).


Nicki Hill
Posted: Friday, September 7, 2012 9:57 PM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


Aw, Angela, I'm so sorry things just keep piling up for you.    Maybe it's just a stage where you need to set the writing aside for a bit and come back to it when you're in a better frame of mind?  Or, if it's giving you something to focus on instead of all of the stress you've been through this summer, keep using it that way - anything that's therapeutic for you is certainly not a waste of time.

LeeAnna Holt
Posted: Saturday, September 8, 2012 5:04 PM
Joined: 4/30/2011
Posts: 662


I'm with Nicki on this one, Angela. If writing makes you feel better, go ahead and keep it up. I wonder myself why I bother, but then I find it helps me maintain my sanity. On the flip side, if you need to take a step back to breath, that's also a good idea. It's whatever makes you comfortable.
Robert C Roman
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 9:38 AM
Joined: 3/12/2011
Posts: 383


Hoo. Been a while, hasn't it?

Sold two serial story starts. Finished beta edits on Drag.Race, then my publisher told me they're no longer doing full length (over 50K). Considering self-pubbing it; 70-80% of my genre on Amazon is self-pub of one flavor or another. Likely won't do until I can get my rights back on the first two parts of the series.

Re-reading the Wheel of Time, writing more on both serials, and getting some done on my other WIP (Desert Fox)


GD Deckard
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 11:27 AM

Time for a dose of medicine, Angela!
Turn on CNN, sit down, relax, watch the world news until you're thinking, OMG, I am really fortunate. I don't have any real problems.

Take a break. Like Niki and Lee Anna say, writing maintains sanity but taking a breather now and then is necessary. Think of an ape swinging through the jungle. He can't get very far if he doesn't remember when to let go

You're a good writer. Your story will bubble up when it's time.

======
Robert ConGrats on the two sold serial story starts!


Angela Martello
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 10:17 PM
Joined: 8/21/2011
Posts: 394


Actually, GD, I have to STOP following the news. I read through several news feeds throughout the day - downright depressing. . .

Spent a few hours working with clay tonight. Did some painting and worked on a mosaic last week. Getting back into the creative swing of things. . .

Did some more editing, too.


Nicki Hill
Posted: Monday, September 10, 2012 11:24 PM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


I woke up this morning to a couple of really lovely and rejuvenating reviews, which is always nice.  Though I'm feeling a little stuck in neutral on all of the current "big" projects, I did want to write today and so I decided to force myself to follow a writing prompt from a blog.  I got about halfway through a short story today before I had to go be productive out in the real world, and I'm enjoying it a lot so far. 

I really hate writing prompts, but I know they're good for me (like veggies!) - they force me to stretch in ways I might not otherwise.  I gave myself permission to be flexible with it, though; while it's supposed to be a flash fiction piece, I'm focusing on the prompt itself and giving myself all the words I need to create a story I'm pleased with.  One day when I'm more disciplined I might start making myself stick to 1,000 words, but for now it's something just to feel the leash.

I'll post it up on my blog tomorrow for anyone who's interested in taking a look-see. 

Angela, glad to hear you're getting back on the horse.    I would love to have as many creative talents/interests/projects as you do!


LeeAnna Holt
Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 12:17 AM
Joined: 4/30/2011
Posts: 662


I'm glad to here you're being creative again, Angela!

My progress is mostly on writing chapter 30. I got half way through editing on chapter 29 and decided to write. I sat down and cranked out 11 pages of double space on my typewriter. I am so proud of myself. I also wrote my first book review. It's up on Goodreads and my blog if anyone wants to check it out.
Lisa Hoekstra
Posted: Wednesday, September 12, 2012 12:33 PM
Joined: 5/10/2011
Posts: 89


Angela - be creative in every way you can! I've always found that writing isn't the only way to inspire my stories and move them forward; art is connected through the artist - so create and produce in any medium! If you're like me, it'll help you escape, give you a new perspective and possibly inspire your next chapter! 

Robert - congrats on the sales; though what's this about having to get the rights back in order to self-publish? (that's probably an "industry" question... but I'm curious as to how that works...)

Everyone - Sounds like you're all being incredibly productive! I however, am not. *le sigh* 

Am currently on day three of my vacation (first vacation in a very long time and much needed) and my mind is finally coming back to the writing sphere. I've actually decided to work with a "self-help" writing kit called You Can Write a Novel by James V. Smith Jr. (my boyfriend bought me this kit for my birthday way back in June). I've never used these types of kits before - I've definitely read up on writing tips and how-tos, but I've never followed a guide or anything (maybe that's my problem!) Anyway, will touch base later to let you all know if it's working. Basically I feel like I'm starting back at square one, which isn't such a bad thing...  
Robert C Roman
Posted: Thursday, September 13, 2012 8:20 AM
Joined: 3/12/2011
Posts: 383


@Lisa - thanks for the congrats. Wish me well, I've got another on an editor's desk right now.

As for rights, it depends entirely on the contract. Someone with more experience than I *cough*Colleen*cough* could speak with more authority, but from my research publishers rarely ask for less than three years or more than five. When the contract is up, whatever rights they granted the publisher.

Nicki Hill
Posted: Thursday, September 13, 2012 10:52 PM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


My new gay (erotic) romance short story, "The Anniversary," is now live in four parts on my blog.  If you're interested in swinging by, http://nickinormandyhill.blogspot.com. Comments (and any other traffic you wanna throw my way) are welcome and encouraged! 

In other creative news, I picked up my flute today for the first time in forever.  I played for a year in high school (was a requirement for all marching band members to also be in concert band my senior year...I was in color guard, so I had to learn an instrument PDQ), and have really only messed around with it a little bit here and there since then.  It was nice to pick my excruciating slow way through some sheet music after all these years.  I also joined a Sweet Adelines group this week and am looking forward to getting back into choral harmony again - my first musical love.

Nicki Hill
Posted: Saturday, September 15, 2012 5:03 AM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


SO MUCH PROGRESS BEING MADE! 

As stated above, I finished writing a short story on Thursday.  It took me four days, writing a little bit at a time.  Today (er, and last night) I wrote the first draft of the second chapter for The Greatest of These, revised it, and posted it.  Took me about five or six hours, all told.

I'm really impressed with myself right now. 


LeeAnna Holt
Posted: Saturday, September 15, 2012 10:06 AM
Joined: 4/30/2011
Posts: 662


@Nicki: I followed you blog because I'm all for supporting fellow writers, even though I don't read romance. I may check out some of your work any way!

As for my progress, I've been uber-busy with my older brother's destination planning. To work out my frustrations, I may write a short story detailing the account of a young woman who is stuck in a car with her head strong, overly political grandmother for 4 hours. Maybe aliens save her at the end or something, I don't know. Or a fairy godmother shows up.

I have slowly chugged along on 30. It's been slow, but this is turning out to be a long one.
Nicki Hill
Posted: Saturday, September 15, 2012 11:19 AM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


Thanks, LeeAnna, it's appreciated. 

Nicki Hill
Posted: Saturday, September 15, 2012 4:15 PM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


So I just got my results back from the Indiana RWA's Golden Opportunity contest (I submitted Key Change back in July, and huge thanks again to everyone who helped out by giving me a review).  This was my first-ever romance writing contest, and I ranked a (I think) fairly respectable 16 out of 26 entries in the single title category.  The comments were interesting to read - certainly no gloss on the critiques - but the score sheets were the best.  Two judges looked at each entry, and one of my judges thought things were great (214/250 points) and the other thought they were pretty not so good (179/250). 

The oddest thing, though, is that the second judge critiqued it quite harshly as a single title but thought it would have been a wonderful YA entry.  At the end of each score sheet, the judges were asked to give it a rating as though they were judging the international RWA's Golden Heart contest; the first judge gave it a 7.5 out of 9 and the second judge gave it a 6, but said that if it had been entered as a YA novel, she would have given it an 8.

*sigh*


GD Deckard
Posted: Monday, September 17, 2012 11:44 AM
ConGrats! Nicki It's well deserved, hard earned recognition.
Lisa Hoekstra
Posted: Monday, September 17, 2012 7:28 PM
Joined: 5/10/2011
Posts: 89


Congrats Nicki! Keep working and submitting your stuff - eventually you'll be number 1  

Robert - Thanks for answering! I'm still not sure I understand, but I will venture over to Industry/Publishing to see if that forum has more info on rights & whatnot. 

Update on my progress - I've been following the steps and it's really hard to restrain myself to sticking to one step! Am currently finding images of real people online to act as guidelines for my characters. Exciting!
Nicki Hill
Posted: Monday, September 17, 2012 10:29 PM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


Lisa, I've done the online-people-template thing (just as an idea on my own), and I've also found it to be pretty good inspiration.  What kit are you using?  I've poked around at a couple but have always worried that I'm not disciplined enough to begin with, let alone trying to make myself follow somebody else's format/schedule. 

Turquoise Foster
Posted: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 12:02 AM
Joined: 8/26/2012
Posts: 19


"Divine Serendipity" is my first novel. (My first attempt at a novel as well.) I've post my five of my pre-revision chapters on to Book Country, and am currently half-way through with my first draft.  The reason I started writing D.S. stems from my love of Greek mythology. I started researching fiction books on the subject, and although I loved most of the books I'd read there was something missing. As I was looking over my news feed on Facebook I saw a quote from an author I was following. It explained that if you hadn't found a book that was everything you wanted that you should write one. No here I am a few months later with half a novel and fiction characters that have somehow come alive.
Lisa Hoekstra
Posted: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 12:13 AM
Joined: 5/10/2011
Posts: 89


Hi Nicki!

I'm using the "You Can Write a Novel Kit" by James V. Smith, Jr.

On Amazon, it's here: http://www.amazon.com/You-Can-Write-Novel-Kit/dp/1582975264

It comes with a "how to" book/guide and 5 note pads - two character outline pads, one scene development pad, one chapter log pad and one revision tracker pad...

I started out reading the book & putting little post-its for all of the "steps/tasks" he says to do (mostly because I wanted to get past the research and into the writing, thinking to myself that I'd already done solid research)... once I got to "character sheets", I started actually doing what he said... and that's when I realized that those steps he'd mentioned were actually necessary for me (which is when I came on BC & posted my previous update)! Tonight I took his suggestions for organizing characters (write everything on the note pad and stick it in a folder with clippings from magazines & photos & etc) and modified them to suit my own needs... (typed one character bio per note in Evernote & clipped photos from the internet into the same note; organize by name & done) and I think this is the best type of character tracking/organization I've had so far. 

I think this kit is worth looking into... especially if you're able to take advice and modify it to suit your own style... So far I've found the book inspiring... and helpful in terms of how to prepare for writing a full length novel. 

If you don't want to buy the kit but are able to borrow the book from the library or something, I can scan & send you images of the note pads so that you can still follow the steps. The note pads do come in handy as a guideline for how much information you need when you're starting to write & where to start! 

Anyway, let me know if you're interested in scans of the note pads and I'll see about getting them to you!  
Nicki Hill
Posted: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 12:16 AM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


Turquoise, that's exactly why I started writing - because it's what I want to read!    Now, of course, I also love it when other people enjoy what I write, too, but if I don't keep reminding myself that ultimately I'm still writing for me (because it's something I enjoy), it's easy sometimes to lose focus or get discouraged when other people get critical of it.  Constructive criticism, of course, is great and I always appreciate it, but I have a hard time keeping my emotions out of it sometimes, too.

Okay, let me be honest: Today was a depressive day in the bipolar emotional world of my writing, so partly I'm just trying to remind myself that this is a hobby and if it's not working for me right now, it's okay.  It's not like this is serious and people are pressuring me to write, so it's okay to have off days that just suck.

And Lisa, that sounds awesome!  I'll look into getting the book from the library and ask you about the scans once I get an idea for whether it's something that might work for me. 


Turquoise Foster
Posted: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 12:30 AM
Joined: 8/26/2012
Posts: 19


I have days like that all the time. When I first started I took a month off, because of "writer's block". I was trying to follow a novel on writing for beginners and I couldn't keep up. Now I set weekly goals and remind myself that this isn't life or death. It's something that I want to do and if I get a headache doing it then it's not enjoyable anymore.
Lisa Hoekstra
Posted: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 9:51 AM
Joined: 5/10/2011
Posts: 89


Nicki - I hope your today is better than your yesterday. I hope you'll find the book helpful! For sure let me know if you want the scans.  

Turquoise - it's so true that writing isn't life or death... but sometimes it feels like it is if only because the stories in my head are battling for attention!! lol.

I can definitely relate to what you are both saying - until I actually sat down with the kit I mentioned, I was in a writing slump (I have decided to refuse to acknowledge the existence of "writer's block" since every advice blog/book I read says it's a myth!)

Just keep pushing through and you'll start having fun again! 
Turquoise Foster
Posted: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 5:50 PM
Joined: 8/26/2012
Posts: 19


Lisa- I agree. If I'm not writing my mind is flooded with ideas that are triggered by the smallest things. I am learning to dismiss the idea of writer's block as well since I've started writing more often. I am looking into the book that you mentioned as a tool in my future writing endeavors. 
LeeAnna Holt
Posted: Friday, September 21, 2012 1:31 PM
Joined: 4/30/2011
Posts: 662


Turquoise, I was taught that writers block is just an excuse for people who don't write enough because it starts to flow once you make yourself sit down and write regularly.

My progress is still crawling along. I just got back from my brother's wedding, and finished a revision on 29. 30 is still chugging along. I'm looking for beta readers, so if anyone is willing to take the time with my little epic go right ahead. 

Currently I would prefer to be playing Skyrim (again), but I made myself sit down and write today even though I have to vacuum, do dishes, dust, mow the lawn, fold the laundry, and myriad other things. I guess I'm just feeling lazy lately and don't want to do anything. Oh, well. Must move forward.
Alexandria Brim
Posted: Saturday, September 22, 2012 11:29 PM
Joined: 10/20/2011
Posts: 353


I'm still working on editing and rewriting chapter 1 of "The Wedding Game." Working over the summer took up a lot of my time, especially with the commute. Not that I'm really complaining--I needed the experience and money. But it was only temporary and yesterday was my last day. I'm thankfully interviewing at other places soon but I'm looking forward to having more time to work on my writing.
Turquoise Foster
Posted: Sunday, September 23, 2012 10:12 AM
Joined: 8/26/2012
Posts: 19


LeeAnna, I agree! Once I sit down and clear my mind from any negative thoughts about my writing "not being good enough" I end up letting my characters tell their stories instead of me trying to figure them out. I'm new to the writing world, but I am an experienced reader. I will read your book and do a review this week. 
LeeAnna Holt
Posted: Sunday, September 23, 2012 12:25 PM
Joined: 4/30/2011
Posts: 662


@Turquoise: Oh, thank you. I guess that means I should get chapter 29 up on here.
Angela Martello
Posted: Tuesday, October 2, 2012 9:32 PM
Joined: 8/21/2011
Posts: 394


Still (slowly) editing the third book in the "A Kaliphian Matter" trilogy. But I've also done some writing for a fantasy I've been kicking around my head for some time now. Back to gallery sitting on Saturdays, so I have a block of quiet time to write (with pen and paper no less!).

GD Deckard
Posted: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 9:26 AM

Pen and paper? First, LeeAnna gets a typewriter, now you write with pen and paper. There goes the theory that the medium is the message.

I have to ask, is there a difference in your writing when you use a typewriter or pen and paper or computer? You and LeeAnna should know.


Lisa Hoekstra
Posted: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 10:33 AM
Joined: 5/10/2011
Posts: 89


I love writing with pen and paper! GD, I know for me that when I write with pen and paper, I spend more time writing and less editing. Working on the computer screen, it's so easy to look up and read - which means I see things I don't like or are spelled wrong... This ends up halting my forward progress because I'm editing what I've already done. Whereas when I write with pen and paper, I can't see what I've already done and thus don't think about it until I'm done the scene. (then I reread it and go "wha???") 

My first draft of the Perchance to Dream was all written out by hand. I then got a friend to come over and we took turns reading/typing. It was a lot of fun and allowed me to edit things out when they snagged as we read. 

Nicki Hill
Posted: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 10:38 AM
Joined: 4/22/2012
Posts: 175


I switch between writing in a word processor and writing with pen and paper.  I don't know that my writing is any better or worse depending on the medium, but I tend to get less distracted with pen and paper (not as easy to just change windows and play around on the internet in a moment of restlessness), and sometimes I just need that tactile sensation that you can't get with a keyboard to feel more plugged in to what I'm doing (and to have that delicious feeling of crossing things out and rewriting - my favorite thing to look at is a hand-written page of cross-outs and rewrites, because I get the impression that I worked hard and accomplished something).  I used to write exclusively with pen and paper and then transfer it to a word processor for final edits if I was really serious about it, because I couldn't handle the different kinesthetics involved in typing versus scribbling and I felt much more distanced from my work if I typed, but as I've gotten older and much more used to typing out first drafts of papers for school and the like, it's not that noticeable a difference for me anymore.  Though I have found that for prewrites - character development and synopsis and so on - I do need the freedom of pen and paper so that I can jot notes in the margins and have more of a connection to the creative process - not feel like I'm just filling out some standard form on the computer.

LeeAnna Holt
Posted: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 2:53 PM
Joined: 4/30/2011
Posts: 662


Yes, for me there is a difference. My brain does not function in front of a computer. Why? There isn't enough tactile feedback to get my brain firing. My body needs to do work to pump out creative ideas. The pressure needed to press down the keys on my manual typewriter, along with other physical functions, gets me going. I can sit there and clack away page after page. Hand writing my manuscripts does the same. The feel of the pen scratching across the page drives me. I love it.

Now, it does cause more work for me, but the benefit of using a typewriter over hand writing is that I can use optical recognition software. While I have to repair the misreads, I don't have to type up the whole thing. It saves me time. I also type faster than I write, so there is another benefit. Typewriters are also have woefully poor internet connection, so that saves me from distraction.

I love my little Skyriter!
Angela Martello
Posted: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 7:56 PM
Joined: 8/21/2011
Posts: 394


There's a far more satisfying sensual aspect in taking pen to paper. First, there's the sound the pen makes as it flows across the paper's surface (which varies, depending on the type of pen and the texture of the paper). There's also the feel of the pen as it glides across the paper. Not to mention the smell of some of the inks; the smell of some of the papers. Plus, for some reason, when I'm writing with a pen, I take more care while composing sentences. Words and phrases are mulled over in my head before the pen touches the page. It might be a slower process, but I find the writing is cleaner.

I'm with the others - I can get too easily distracted when I'm writing on my computer. Of course, I do use my computer for writing - a lot. And technology does have its many advantages: spelling checking, easy editing, quick look-up to see how I spelled a character's name in an earlier section, etc. But technology also has its disadvantages: laptops and netbooks only hold a charge for so long (nothing worse than the dreaded battery low warning when I'm in the middle of a section!). And if  I need to do something at the gallery, I don't mind setting my paper notebook down and stepping away. I get a little antsy if I have to leave the netbook unattended if even for a few minutes.

I guess one of the main reasons I love using pen and paper is that I like working with my hands (clay, paint, beads - all have a tactile component). I feel more centered; more alive.


 

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