It is February. Yay.
January was a lost month, for writing. But I am not too down on myself for it. I was sick for the first two weeks. I still have the dregs of the cough. Additionally, I spent some time focussing on my health issues. I saw my doctor, and he gave me some new meds, including insulin (thanks for the samples!), and it took a bit for my body to adjust to them. I have been sleeping quite a bit, which is not usual for me. Once, I slept for 29 hours, mostly continuous. I am certain my body needed it, and still does. But, with me sleeping more than my usual 4-6 hours at a time, it has impacted the rest of my life. For January, I decided to let my writing take back seat to everything else.
It isn’t January anymore.
That said, I am getting back on track, and am declaring myself publicly, to dedicate to a daily writing regimen. Now, when I say regimen, that does not mean anything regular. The nature of my health issues dictate that I must be flexible, but the goal is to write every day. I have done this in the past with good success, and am confident to do it again.
I am not proposing to specific goals, such as X amount of words per day, or hours spent writing. The goals are general. Butt in chair, and working on my story. It might be plotting, drafting, performing research, or editing. The whole point is to maintain forward movement. By the end of the month, I WILL have completed the draft of my Kestrel Creed novel. At least.
In the interim, while I was struggling with my problematic January, I have still been productive. I have read two books on writing craft, including a valuable ebook with tips on increasing productivity. I have added reading to my routine (that is is), and am dedicated to including reading (both craft books and fiction) in the aforementioned regimen. So though little prose happened last month, I still feel productive. I am educating myself, and my stories are the better for it. Many of these techniques will make my time spent writing more productive.
As for my writing samples for you all… I am sorry to disappoint you, but for now, I won’t be posting any more excerpts. What I have already written is quite a lot of work, an unfinished work. To quote Rachel Aaron in her book, 2K to 10K (linked above):
“…I don’t believe in using beta readers before I’ve edited my book completely myself. First, I think its rude to ask someone to read something as unfinished as a typical first draft, and second, if I rely on others to spot my problems for me, then I’m not growing as an editor or a writer. Save the fresh, foreign eyeballs for the problems you can’t find on your own. Anything else is a waste of everyone’s time.”
You may disagree. I don’t completely agree, favoring the notion of getting my work read by as many folks as possible, and giving you all a taste of my writing. But what you are tasting is undercooked, and the recipe has not yet been tested. I’d rather you wait for a more satisfying dish, as it were. So I won’t be posting any more samples until I am finished. And I mean finished with the draft, and the editing, and the post editing editing. I am sorry, but I feel it is better to wait for the meal than fill up on junk and ruin your appetite. But when I do finish, you might have fun comparing the samples to the finished work. And for those of you who have stood by me, I think you will be pleased with the results.
I will post the announcement here as soon as I am done. In the mean time, I will be blogging every so often to give you updates on my progress and insights to my personal life, as time permits.
Thanks for understanding, and please don’t hesitate to leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you.
Mark Adam Thomas