Tag Archive | pep talk

Harvesting Ideas by Doug Goodman

Seven more days and NaNoWriMo comes to an end. What a rush. Will you be a winner? Struggling to get those final ideas down? Searching for another doze of motivation to jump that final leap? Check out author Doug Goodman’s pep talk and get writing.

 

Harvesting Ideas

Here is one of my truths of writing:  ideas are like fruit.  They are planted, they are nourished, and they are harvested.  When properly harvested, ideas can be sweet and juicy and inspiring.  But left to over-ripen, they can die on the vine.  This is the problem I have as a writer.  A good idea gestates a proper length, then must be plucked.  The harvesting is the writing itself.

I have on more than one occasion written a beautiful beginning to a story, then let the story gestate until a new story idea absorbs me and I get busy working that idea, and then everything else in life tumbles along and a year later, I have forgotten to go back to the original idea.  When I finally returned to that beginning, I read it, and I am amazed at how beautiful it is worded, and I am enthralled with the setup.  What a great story, I wonder how the rest of it goes!  Then I remember that I wrote it; I am the one responsible for the rest of the story.  I wonder where I was going with what I wrote.  What was I thinking?  It sounded great, and I would love to read more, but the idea has wilted and died.

For NaNoWriMo, this process is sped up, but the same repercussions exist.  Stories can die.  They can lay there like half-eaten fruit devoured by finches and blue jays.  This is why it is so important to keep writing, keep pushing yourself, to finish the project.  Finish!  That alone is an accomplishment.  I used to compare it to running a marathon.  For most, it’s not about trying to break some record or place in a race, the simple act of finishing is an accomplishment.  You will have written a novel.  Few people can actually say that.  And think about it:  a finished project is much easier to adjust than an unfinished one.  You can always go back and cut off the final act of your story, which is what I did for a recent project of mine.  This is what the editing process is for, but ideas that are not fully developed are beyond difficult to renovate.  Again, you return to the problems of “where was I going with this?” and “what was I thinking?”

And this is the hardest time of NaNoWriMo.  Everybody knows this.  Sure, it was easy to dedicate yourself to a rough draft on November 1, but then you took off that weekend, and now you are starting to feel like you are behind.  And the holidays are beginning.  Thanksgiving requires attention (cooking, cleaning, football watching, holiday luncheons) as well as early Christmas duties (Black Fridays and shopping and decorations), but don’t disregard the writing project.  Get your numbers in.  Put your words together.  Don’t worry about refining yet.  You are a writer.  This is what writers do.  We sit in front of computer screens and try to squeeze blood from a stone.  You can make it happen.  Leave revising to you in three months.  For now, concentrate on the moment.

If you put it off, you may find that it is mid-January, and that great idea you had in November is now an autumn fruit that has died on your vine.

 

Bio:

Doug Goodman is a writer who lives on the Texas Gulf coast. He works at NASA and in his spare time when he is not writing about death and destruction, he trains human remains dogs. Dominion is his first book with Severed Press, and Warriors of Camlann is his first self-published book. His writing has also appeared in anthologies such as Twisted Boulevard, Horrors Beyond, Cthulhu Unbound, and State of Horror: Texas.

 

book2Where you can find his books:

Dominion (post-apocalyptic horror): http://www.amazon.com/Dominion-Apocalyptic-Thriller-Doug-Goodman-ebook/dp/B00NJ6T5GW/ref=asap_B00IHF1I8S_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1416675192&sr=1-3

Warriors of Camlann (bloody King Arthur): http://www.amazon.com/Warriors-Camlann-1-Doug-Goodman/dp/1484836863/ref=asap_B00IHF1I8S_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1416675195&sr=1-5


I hope you enjoyed today’s pep talk. I was thrilled to meet, Doug Goodman, one of the nicest and energetic writers I know, at South Texas Comic Con last month and just had to have him as a guest in our blog. Don’t forget to check out our previous pep talk by author Willow Wood.

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The Gears are in Full Swing (10,000 words and counting)

Picture courtesy of ImageAfter.com

Picture courtesy of ImageAfter.com

Yesterday was the 10,000 word mark. Did you pass with words to spare? Did you barely skid through? Or are you pushing that one more sprint to catch up? Whichever one you are, it is a great feat in itself to still be in the race. Congratulations!

For those of us pushing through here is another pep talk by the author of Divergent, Veronica Roth. Get inspired, get hyped, get writing.

And for those ahead of the race there isn’t time to slow down, keep at it. This Saturday is the Double Up nightmare. Yes, that is right. This Saturday is a mini challenge in itself where you push yourself to write twice as much. Instead of the daily 1667 shoot for 3334 words. Are you ready?

Plus, to top it off there is another mini event taking place today, Virtual Write In. Video will go live at 1pm PST. Don’t worry if you can’t take part right off the bat. You can always access the video later on and give it a go.

This post seems to have a little bit of everything. Talk about multitasking and turning up the heat, but that’s ok because November is a month to challenge yourself beyond your limits, to discover the greatness ready to come out, and to share that story you’ve been waiting all year to tell.

So, hit up those places that give you that extra push you need, bust out those tools that make keeping track of your writing easier, watch videos that inspire, and don’t forget to read. Just because NaNoWriMo is an event on writing, all writers should read almost as much as they write. The best tool you have are the books you love to read.

Here is what I am reading right now:

nightmareasylum SciFiFantasy

And here is my word count for the past few days:

November 4th: 1395

November 5th: 1286

Yesterday: 1736

Today: 462

Total: 10782

For those following my promo launch for A Prince From Another World, it has been altered to allow me time to write and keep my health from diminishing further. I wasn’t feel very well the past few days, thus the reason for the lack of posts and lower word counts. Plus my sanity could use some break as well. Instead of a five day promo launch I have decided to make a six day launch where every Sunday and Monday I post a promo blog. The promo launch will be extended to the 17th. So expect two promo posts on the 9th and 10th followed by the last two on the 16th and 17th.

Thanks for stopping by and feel free to share your word count progress and any neat blogs or books you read during this long month of November.

Pep Talks (Because you know you want to talk instead of write)

Challenge

Day Two of NANOWRIMO

The writing challenge is in full swing or at least should be. But what should one do if it isn’t?

One of the things I missed out on those two years I tried writing a novel in 30 days and failed was taking advantage of all the positive support and resources out there. Like I said before and will probably say 28 more times, there is a vast amount of information for your brain to soak up. There are books on how to do just about anything related to writing and otherwise, blogs and journals (if you still use livejournal), websites, and careers centered on helping writers write.

Our two previous blogs talked about getting a head start and brainstorming. We also dabbed in the topic of finding inspiration to write. But what if after all that writing is still coming at painful chunks, each more painful than the last?

dialogue

Pep Talks is one of those lovely resources we can fall back on. If you signed up for NANOWRIMO you might have already received your first one from Chuck Wendig, writer of The Kick-Ass Writer and 250 Things You Should Know About Writing. If you haven’t or didn’t get around to reading it yet go read it now. What are you waiting for? You’ll laugh and want to write Donuts in an empty field when your done reading it. And who knows maybe you will want to keep writing and knock off some of those words you need for today’s word count.

Or maybe you will want to write your own pep talk.

Maybe you’ll make a list of all the great things you can accomplish by treading through the thick mud and refusing to stop so early in the game.

After all:

  1. There are only 29 more days left, 28 if you managed to write today.
  2. You are less than a month away from having a finished novel to stuff in your drawer and never look at again. Or maybe you could try and share it with others and actually publish it.
  3. Think of all the characters you could kill off, marry, or toss in the meat grinder before you write HFA or HFN.
  4. What about world building? How could one say no to the opportunity to create the next world kids and people will be dreaming about?
  5. Or how about all the weird names you can give your characters? You know the world needs another Charlie and Rapunzel to drive us madly in love or insane, which ever fits your genre.

Or maybe you could skip the list and check out writing communities and writing support groups to see how others are overcoming each challenge NANOWRIMO throws at them.

The goals, dreams, desires are endless and so is wanting to hang up the towel and hit the sack. But remember you can still do those last two so why not wait till the end that way you get to really enjoy that overdue sleep while holding your novel in your hands?

Pep talk over. What? That was pep talk? Well it was my own twisted version of it. See how sneaky I was and slipped it by you. 🙂

And now for the results.

Word Count for today: 1578

Day Before: 2139 (1692 at the time of first blog post)

Total so far: 3717

I was able to write a little more yesterday and boost my word count past 2,000 for day one. That is a great accomplishment for me. 🙂 Hope you found this blog entertaining and motivating. Have a few other pep talks, motivational speeches you love, share them with us and don’t forget to stop by tomorrow for day two of my promo launch and day three of NANOWRIMO.