Author Topic: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017  (Read 17387 times)

SeaKayEl

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Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« on: January 01, 2017, 12:55:32 AM »
Anyone else want to focus on starting or finishing their book in 2017?

I would love some accountability and encouragement on finishing my book...and would love to encourage others to do the same.


For the last 2 years or so I have been thinking about, brainstorming, drawing, and writing (on and off).  This is what I have so far:

3 children's book ideas
2 (out of the 3 ideas) I have rough drafts (minus illustrations)
I have a few rough draft illustrations for both

What I would like to accomplish in 2017:

1. Self Publish one of my ideas.

Step 1: I have already decided which of my 3 ideas I would like to move forward with.
Step 2: Re-read (and possibly re-write)
Step 3: Complete rough draft illustrations for all pages
Step 4: Tweak, Tweak Tweak
Step 5: Final drafts (both writing and illustrations)
Step 6: Research the best way to self publish

I think my biggest hurdle will be overcoming my perfectionism (which I think has somewhat hindered me the last 2 years).  I will re-draw one of my illustrations 10-20 times or more.  Hhhmmmm, maybe now is a good time to read "The Gifts of Imperfection" by Brene Brown that's been sitting on my shelf...

Anyway, I hope others will jump in on this journey with me!


Poundwise

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2017, 06:30:39 AM »
I am in!  My #1 resolution for 2017 was already: Write Daily.

My biggest hurdle is making the time, since I care for 3 kids and an elderly parent.  Maybe I have to learn how to write 5 minutes at a time, like I do when I lurk these forums.

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2017, 10:51:47 AM »
I am in!  My #1 resolution for 2017 was already: Write Daily.

My biggest hurdle is making the time, since I care for 3 kids and an elderly parent.  Maybe I have to learn how to write 5 minutes at a time, like I do when I lurk these forums.

That sounds great Poundwise.  What will you be writing?  A book, blog, journal, something else...?  If there is anything I can do to help you reach your goal, let me know! 

Today I will expand on my game plan I stepped out in my post above.

naughty240

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2017, 03:32:25 PM »
I have notes of all sorts that I wanted to use to make a digital cookbook. I tell myself I need to work on it but I get swallowed up by laziness. In reality, its the fun stuff thats left. Cook, take pics and eat. Make coffee take pics and drink. Time to get this up and going.

This will be my first attempt at writing for fun and sharing my own work with others.

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2017, 03:49:42 PM »
I have notes of all sorts that I wanted to use to make a digital cookbook. I tell myself I need to work on it but I get swallowed up by laziness. In reality, its the fun stuff thats left. Cook, take pics and eat. Make coffee take pics and drink. Time to get this up and going.

This will be my first attempt at writing for fun and sharing my own work with others.

I am not sure what goes into creating a cookbook, but it certainly does sound like you have the fun part left!  Anytime you need a little kick in the butt for motivation, come on here and I'd gladly help out ;)

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2017, 05:04:30 PM »
Here is my game plan (subject to changes):

I have created an excel spreadsheet to help keep me on track (picture attached).

My on-going tasks will be to continually tweak content as I go and research what needs to happen to self publish.

First Step: Rough Drafts.  Each week I will illustrate a rough draft of each page (32 pages in total).
Next Step: Final drafts. Complete 3 final drafts per week.
Final Step: Publish

This week my task is to have a rough draft illustration of Page 1.

Izybat

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2017, 04:18:44 PM »
I'm in for this challenge. I used to (like 10-12 years ago) write a lot, and managed to finish around 5 books, though I never made any attempt to get any of them published. Since then I've made a few stints happen, but always fall off the wagon for some reason, most recently in June of 2016. I've been really wanting to get back into it, but now it seems so much harder because I have a "real life" that involves a "real job," a husband, and two step-daughters. The goal I set for myself, for starters, is at least 30 minutes a day at least 5 days a week. I used to be able to do much more than that, but I figure this should be enough to shake the dust off and hopefully get me back in the habit of writing. My husband got a me a membership to a writer's group for Christmas, so I'm hoping to use that for encouragement as well.

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2017, 07:04:05 PM »
I'm in for this challenge. I used to (like 10-12 years ago) write a lot, and managed to finish around 5 books, though I never made any attempt to get any of them published. Since then I've made a few stints happen, but always fall off the wagon for some reason, most recently in June of 2016. I've been really wanting to get back into it, but now it seems so much harder because I have a "real life" that involves a "real job," a husband, and two step-daughters. The goal I set for myself, for starters, is at least 30 minutes a day at least 5 days a week. I used to be able to do much more than that, but I figure this should be enough to shake the dust off and hopefully get me back in the habit of writing. My husband got a me a membership to a writer's group for Christmas, so I'm hoping to use that for encouragement as well.

Awesome!!  I have never heard of a membership to a writer's group...what is this?

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2017, 07:16:22 PM »
I finished mine recently :)

I would love to be in this group, though, to keep me accountable for moving forward with the subsequent steps: submitting it to professional reviewers, so that libraries relying on that as criteria can consider it.

Does this stage fit within this thread?

I am very happy to share my experiences (positive and struggly) with the entire process.

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2017, 07:23:26 PM »
I finished mine recently :)

I would love to be in this group, though, to keep me accountable for moving forward with the subsequent steps: submitting it to professional reviewers, so that libraries relying on that as criteria can consider it.

Does this stage fit within this thread?

I am very happy to share my experiences (positive and struggly) with the entire process.

Absolutely!  I can't wait to hear about  your experiences.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2017, 07:36:31 PM »
Thank you, SeaKayEl :)

While I imagine each writer's internal process would be different, especially depending on what we're writing, some of the things that really helped me were:

1. Therapy. ha, yep! I was preparing to expose so much of myself (nonfiction) that I needed a lot of therapy. I really had to explore what I felt able to do, become brave enough to bring sections of the manuscript to people referenced in it, etc.

2. Books and articles by other writers about how to stick with it, cope with the isolation or emotions that come up for a lot of as we go, etc. Abovementioned therapist recommended Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. It really did help me! It helped me see I was not alone, and made me laugh hard about the whole shebang. But, I liked words by other authors, too, about how painful or humbling or embarrassing or frustrating, etc, some of it can be. Some forum members have said writing is "fun" or "for fun" such that time, energy, direct costs, or lack of payment should be a non-issue. For me, it's been really important emotionally and psychologically to connect with others for whom writing and producing feels more like a vocation, calling, demanding work, major investment.

There's my little tidbit for today. Hope any of it's helpful to anyone!

Rhoon

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #11 on: January 02, 2017, 07:38:39 PM »
I'm definitely in.

In case no one has heard of this group, they offer great motivation in November. Recommend getting on their Twitter Account.

http://nanowrimo.org/en/forums


SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2017, 08:35:41 PM »
Thank you, SeaKayEl :)

While I imagine each writer's internal process would be different, especially depending on what we're writing, some of the things that really helped me were:

1. Therapy. ha, yep! I was preparing to expose so much of myself (nonfiction) that I needed a lot of therapy. I really had to explore what I felt able to do, become brave enough to bring sections of the manuscript to people referenced in it, etc.

2. Books and articles by other writers about how to stick with it, cope with the isolation or emotions that come up for a lot of as we go, etc. Abovementioned therapist recommended Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. It really did help me! It helped me see I was not alone, and made me laugh hard about the whole shebang. But, I liked words by other authors, too, about how painful or humbling or embarrassing or frustrating, etc, some of it can be. Some forum members have said writing is "fun" or "for fun" such that time, energy, direct costs, or lack of payment should be a non-issue. For me, it's been really important emotionally and psychologically to connect with others for whom writing and producing feels more like a vocation, calling, demanding work, major investment.

There's my little tidbit for today. Hope any of it's helpful to anyone!

I really enjoy hearing other's advice, perspectives, and experiences regarding life in general, so thanks for sharing!  To add onto the "writing is fun" discussion,  "fun" isn't the word that comes to my mind when I think about my process.  Don't get me wrong, there are definitely some fun elements to it.  My love for following through with this idea and the final product as I imagine it is the driving force.  I think that is why I haven't given up on this for 2 years. 
I don't believe the creative process is supposed to be the same for everyone.  I listened to an episode of the Revisionist's History podcast "Hallelujah" which is about creative genius.  Lenord Cohan's process of writing that song may be somewhat of an agonizing one, maybe you'd be interested in listening to it.  (The entire podcast is wonderful...I've listened to all the episodes, twice! I am anxiously awaiting a new season to come out.)  Also, I requested the Bird by Bird book at the library (it is currently checked out and there is one person in front of me).


Thanks for the resource Rhoon, I will check that out!

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #13 on: January 03, 2017, 01:12:52 AM »
..."fun" isn't the word that comes to my mind when I think about my process.  Don't get me wrong, there are definitely some fun elements to it.  My love for following through with this idea and the final product as I imagine it is the driving force.

All of that well reflects where I land :)

Finding the exact right word is fun for me.
Whittling a phrase to its bare bones is fun for me.
Some of the other demands? Oy.

I would add that for me, the ultimate experience of contributing (easing others' lives) is what drives me. This means, though, that my sense of fulfillment and "success" in a project is dependent on knowing that people I could not have otherwise encountered are indeed supported by what I've written. That's kind of a dangerous condition, know what I mean?

...Revisionist's History podcast "Hallelujah" which is about creative genius.  Lenord Cohan's process of writing that song may be somewhat of an agonizing one, maybe you'd be interested in listening to it.

Wonderful, thank you! Though I prefer reading to listening, I'm definitely going to check that out. The week of Cohen's death, my sister was telling me about his process of starting with poetry and being forced by circumstance, essentially, into music. I had never known that, nor about his discomfort with performing. I then listened to something on CBC radio about it.

I was fascinated, and found it very comforting that Cohen had had such a difficult and strange journey with his contributions! It seemed like his initial or primary sense of calling was not in alignment with what the world was asking him for, which is an interesting consideration.

PAstash

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #14 on: January 03, 2017, 01:48:59 AM »
Anyone else want to focus on starting or finishing their book in 2017?

I would love some accountability and encouragement on finishing my book...and would love to encourage others to do the same.


For the last 2 years or so I have been thinking about, brainstorming, drawing, and writing (on and off).  This is what I have so far:

3 children's book ideas
2 (out of the 3 ideas) I have rough drafts (minus illustrations)
I have a few rough draft illustrations for both

What I would like to accomplish in 2017:

1. Self Publish one of my ideas.

Step 1: I have already decided which of my 3 ideas I would like to move forward with.
Step 2: Re-read (and possibly re-write)
Step 3: Complete rough draft illustrations for all pages
Step 4: Tweak, Tweak Tweak
Step 5: Final drafts (both writing and illustrations)
Step 6: Research the best way to self publish

I think my biggest hurdle will be overcoming my perfectionism (which I think has somewhat hindered me the last 2 years).  I will re-draw one of my illustrations 10-20 times or more.  Hhhmmmm, maybe now is a good time to read "The Gifts of Imperfection" by Brene Brown that's been sitting on my shelf...

Anyway, I hope others will jump in on this journey with me!

I've been working on a 3 part series for two years! I am so frightened over putting my work out there to be judged! =/

Poundwise

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #15 on: January 03, 2017, 05:02:19 AM »
I am in!  My #1 resolution for 2017 was already: Write Daily.

My biggest hurdle is making the time, since I care for 3 kids and an elderly parent.  Maybe I have to learn how to write 5 minutes at a time, like I do when I lurk these forums.

That sounds great Poundwise.  What will you be writing?  A book, blog, journal, something else...?  If there is anything I can do to help you reach your goal, let me know! 

Today I will expand on my game plan I stepped out in my post above.

Well, it is Day 3 of the New Year and I haven't written yet!  Will make a stab at it now, before everyone in the house wakes up.  Maybe I can do something like the Minimalist challenge, where I will try to write for 5 minutes today, 10 minutes tomorrow, etc. up to an hour.  Will discuss more about what I'm trying to write after I've actually gotten started!

naughty240

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #16 on: January 03, 2017, 10:08:40 AM »
Home sick today but I did write for over an hour!

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #17 on: January 03, 2017, 11:00:58 AM »
I would add that for me, the ultimate experience of contributing (easing others' lives) is what drives me. This means, though, that my sense of fulfillment and "success" in a project is dependent on knowing that people I could not have otherwise encountered are indeed supported by what I've written. That's kind of a dangerous condition, know what I mean?

I haven't thought too much about this yet...although I may fall into this category somewhat.  I want my work to make an impact (regardless how small)...unfortunately you can't know how others will respond or perceive what you put out there.  Also, you may never know the impacts of your work.


Wonderful, thank you! Though I prefer reading to listening, I'm definitely going to check that out. The week of Cohen's death, my sister was telling me about his process of starting with poetry and being forced by circumstance, essentially, into music. I had never known that, nor about his discomfort with performing. I then listened to something on CBC radio about it.

I was fascinated, and found it very comforting that Cohen had had such a difficult and strange journey with his contributions! It seemed like his initial or primary sense of calling was not in alignment with what the world was asking him for, which is an interesting consideration.

I think society pushes this version of how things "should" be, i.e. if you are a creative genius (using the example in the podcast) things just come to you easy and naturally.  This isn't real life for 99% of the population I would guess and I personally would love to hear/see more stories of struggle, defeat and failure after failure when talking about "success."
Here is a link to a written summary of the episode if you prefer:
https://joshuamcnall.com/2016/08/02/how-genius-happens-the-untold-story-of-leonard-cohens-hallelujah/




I've been working on a 3 part series for two years! I am so frightened over putting my work out there to be judged! =/

That is extremely daunting.  I think regardless of what you do there will always be the critics.  Even though I know this, I am a sensitive person who is adverse to vulnerability and think the critics will still bum me out.  Not sure if this will help you but a couple things that help me with all the critics in my life:

1. Brene Brown on Critics and Vulnerability (pretty powerful): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-JXOnFOXQk
2. I was going to put an article here that I like, but I re-watched the above video and I think this is all anyone needs to watch.




Well, it is Day 3 of the New Year and I haven't written yet!  Will make a stab at it now, before everyone in the house wakes up.  Maybe I can do something like the Minimalist challenge, where I will try to write for 5 minutes today, 10 minutes tomorrow, etc. up to an hour.  Will discuss more about what I'm trying to write after I've actually gotten started!

I bet we would all be surprised at how much writing we can accomplish in 5mins a day!!  I do like the idea of upping it daily.  I am pumped to hear what you will be writing about!


Home sick today but I did write for over an hour!

AMAZING!!!  I love it--Thanks for the motivation!

Poundwise

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #18 on: January 03, 2017, 11:47:48 AM »
Quote
That sounds great Poundwise.  What will you be writing?  A book, blog, journal, something else...?  If there is anything I can do to help you reach your goal, let me know! 

Some years ago I invested a fair amount of time plotting out a fantasy trilogy (though it looks like close to 5 books at this point) and I'd like to fill it out.  Don't know if I will ever finish it, don't think it would ever get published, but this is something on my bucket list to do.  Anyway, I spent about 15 minutes on it this morning! I'm going to try to follow Jerry Seinfeld's "Don't break the chain" strategy. Any time I write for even 5 minutes I get to put an "X" on my calendar, and will try to make as long a chain of Xs as I can.

I will also try to take the example of Jane Austen (or another famous woman author, I forget whom) who had no privacy or quiet time to write, but just wrote in short bursts amid the noise and conversation of her family.

I'm eager to hear about your progress, SeaKayEl!
« Last Edit: January 03, 2017, 11:49:42 AM by Poundwise »

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #19 on: January 03, 2017, 12:51:47 PM »
Quote
That sounds great Poundwise.  What will you be writing?  A book, blog, journal, something else...?  If there is anything I can do to help you reach your goal, let me know! 

Some years ago I invested a fair amount of time plotting out a fantasy trilogy (though it looks like close to 5 books at this point) and I'd like to fill it out.  Don't know if I will ever finish it, don't think it would ever get published, but this is something on my bucket list to do.  Anyway, I spent about 15 minutes on it this morning! I'm going to try to follow Jerry Seinfeld's "Don't break the chain" strategy. Any time I write for even 5 minutes I get to put an "X" on my calendar, and will try to make as long a chain of Xs as I can.

I will also try to take the example of Jane Austen (or another famous woman author, I forget whom) who had no privacy or quiet time to write, but just wrote in short bursts amid the noise and conversation of her family.

I'm eager to hear about your progress, SeaKayEl!

I think even if you don't quite finish your fantasy "trilogy" I think after this year you will be a lot closer to checking off your bucket list item!! 

Cookie78

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #20 on: January 03, 2017, 01:04:55 PM »
Awesome challenge!

I decided just last week that I wanted to get started on a project like this. I only have a vague idea of a story line, but I think I just need to start writing, even just short stories, to get the creative juices flowing.

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #21 on: January 03, 2017, 01:55:44 PM »
Awesome challenge!

I decided just last week that I wanted to get started on a project like this. I only have a vague idea of a story line, but I think I just need to start writing, even just short stories, to get the creative juices flowing.

Welcome Cookie78!  Can't wait to hear about your progress!

progman2000

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #22 on: January 03, 2017, 02:47:19 PM »
Anyone else want to focus on starting or finishing their book in 2017?

I would love some accountability and encouragement on finishing my book...and would love to encourage others to do the same.


For the last 2 years or so I have been thinking about, brainstorming, drawing, and writing (on and off).  This is what I have so far:

3 children's book ideas
2 (out of the 3 ideas) I have rough drafts (minus illustrations)
I have a few rough draft illustrations for both

What I would like to accomplish in 2017:

1. Self Publish one of my ideas.

Step 1: I have already decided which of my 3 ideas I would like to move forward with.
Step 2: Re-read (and possibly re-write)
Step 3: Complete rough draft illustrations for all pages
Step 4: Tweak, Tweak Tweak
Step 5: Final drafts (both writing and illustrations)
Step 6: Research the best way to self publish

I think my biggest hurdle will be overcoming my perfectionism (which I think has somewhat hindered me the last 2 years).  I will re-draw one of my illustrations 10-20 times or more.  Hhhmmmm, maybe now is a good time to read "The Gifts of Imperfection" by Brene Brown that's been sitting on my shelf...

Anyway, I hope others will jump in on this journey with me!
Just curious, are you doing this out of a desire to become published? Or are you pursuing for purely financial reasons?

And do you plan on publishing digital editions, print or both?

Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk


Metta

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #23 on: January 03, 2017, 03:34:14 PM »
I'd like to participate in this as well. I have three novels that I want to write this year. I'm hoping to finish the first draft of the first one in May.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #24 on: January 03, 2017, 04:04:37 PM »
I am so frightened over putting my work out there to be judged! =/

That is an entirely reasonable, fair, and sane concern :)
It is extremely likely the work of any person will be criticized by some.
See my post re: my need for therapy, etc ;)

Outside of sheer error (fact, grammar, etc), a reader's experience is subjective. Where I see that a work may be sound, and is simply not to my preference, I don't post a harsh review—but many people do post their subjective experience, or even entirely imagined content, as objective fact. That sucks.

I know a lot of writers encourage us to share the earliest version with no one, and an interim version with only kind people who will gently give helpful input. Maybe some of us could be the latter for you, before you present it to the judgey world?

Izybat

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #25 on: January 03, 2017, 05:08:06 PM »
I'm in for this challenge. I used to (like 10-12 years ago) write a lot, and managed to finish around 5 books, though I never made any attempt to get any of them published. Since then I've made a few stints happen, but always fall off the wagon for some reason, most recently in June of 2016. I've been really wanting to get back into it, but now it seems so much harder because I have a "real life" that involves a "real job," a husband, and two step-daughters. The goal I set for myself, for starters, is at least 30 minutes a day at least 5 days a week. I used to be able to do much more than that, but I figure this should be enough to shake the dust off and hopefully get me back in the habit of writing. My husband got a me a membership to a writer's group for Christmas, so I'm hoping to use that for encouragement as well.
Awesome!!  I have never heard of a membership to a writer's group...what is this?

My husband got me a membership to Romance Writers of America (https://www.rwa.org/). It's mainly (obviously) for romance writers, and what I write is probably borderline, but I figure it qualifies enough to count for membership. They have monthly meetings, seminars, annual gatherings and other such helpful things. I haven't really attended before, so I'll have to see how useful it is. Fingers crossed.

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #26 on: January 03, 2017, 11:52:47 PM »
Just curious, are you doing this out of a desire to become published? Or are you pursuing for purely financial reasons?
And do you plan on publishing digital editions, print or both?
Solely a desired to be published. 
As of right now I only intend on digital.




I'd like to participate in this as well. I have three novels that I want to write this year. I'm hoping to finish the first draft of the first one in May.
Welcome Metta! That is pretty awesome that you are going for three!!  Keep us posted on your journey.



They have monthly meetings, seminars, annual gatherings and other such helpful things.
Sounds like a great resource.  You will have to let us know about your experience with it.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #27 on: January 06, 2017, 02:59:57 AM »
How's everyone's writing going the last three days? :)

DragonSlayer

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #28 on: January 06, 2017, 06:46:23 AM »
I have no choice but to participate in this challenge! My publisher is expecting book 3 of my series. Well, technically they were expecting it two months ago but the poop hit the fan and I got seriously delayed. I really need to finish it this month, and then get book four going. Plus, I really want to work on some new projects outside that series and see what happens with those.

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #29 on: January 06, 2017, 09:53:39 AM »
Joon,

I am counting on Saturday to do my title page rough draft illustrations.  I plan on having my update tomorrow be positive and full of accomplishment! :D

Welcome DragonSlayer... Here's to getting back on track with book 3 and starting book 4!!

Izybat

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #30 on: January 06, 2017, 05:28:21 PM »
Today is day 6 of my new year's resolution to write for at least 30 minutes at least 5 days a week. I wrote every day 1-4, but last night had a headache that wouldn't go away, and didn't manage to get any writing done. Today... isn't over yet. So I still have a chance.

Poundwise

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #31 on: January 06, 2017, 07:15:25 PM »
Haven't broken the chain yet!  I'm thinking of raising the minimum  from 5 minutes to 30 minutes, but maybe I had better try to keep the chain going for another few weeks to solidify the habit first.  Having a lot of fun!

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #32 on: January 07, 2017, 11:45:43 AM »
People are smokin' at this! Fun! :)

I have made zero progress this week (re: submitting to professional reviewers). Life sucked me in. I know that parenting is priority above writing for me, though, and sometimes weeks are like this.

Life seems to have resolved, though, and I've carved out time next week, though, by refusing additional social contact M/T/W, with a reward of social contact Thursday.

CloserToFree

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #33 on: January 07, 2017, 12:13:28 PM »
Posting to follow!  Have been thinking about writing a book and sketched out some ideas for this a couple days ago, for the first time.  Excited about giving it a try so glad to have this thread for encouragement :)

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #34 on: January 07, 2017, 05:13:50 PM »
Just finished drawing a rough draft illustration of my title page, so I hit my week one goal!

Let's keep the motivation rolling into week 2!

Poundwise

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #35 on: January 09, 2017, 07:38:14 PM »
Great job, SeaKayEl!! I'd love to see your illustrations some day when you are ready.

I haven't broken the chain yet, but I had an unexpectedly rough Monday so I'm trying to get up the gumption to put in my 5 minutes of writing.  5 minutes is really too short, but the good thing is that I have been often going overtime, and at least I am thinking about the stories every day instead of having to spend a couple hours trying to figure out where I was last time.

How is everybody else doing?

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #36 on: January 09, 2017, 07:44:55 PM »
Great job, SeaKayEl!! I'd love to see your illustrations some day when you are ready.

I only have two rough sketches for the book I'm currently working on....and the title page illustration I want to tweak (quite possibly tonight). 

So...I have attached the cover page.  :D

Poundwise

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #37 on: January 09, 2017, 07:52:56 PM »
That is SO cute!!! I'm really impressed... and intrigued! Will you color or leave it in black and white?

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #38 on: January 09, 2017, 07:58:54 PM »
That is SO cute!!! I'm really impressed... and intrigued! Will you color or leave it in black and white?

Thank you for the kind words! :D :D :D
I personally like black and white better....but thinking of my audience (little kids), I think it would be better if I color them.  I am thinking of doing watercolors (but not intense color--more faded and very light--still deciding on this).


jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #39 on: January 09, 2017, 09:08:46 PM »
I'm intrigued by that title! :)

My mum does really cool kids' books. She thinks her illustrations aren't "good enough." In my view, they're really awesome. I pointed to a book she bought me when I was a kid: Takashima's A Child In Prison Camp. Its illustrations are swishy and vague, but give an excellent sense...I "got" them as a kid, and it has won awards for those!

As for me, my kid's disability school disappeared, so I will have to sort out a new plan for my next step and also for attending the casual writing group I signed up for, d'oh! However, I have managed to write giant things during his lifetime, so will certainly find a way to continue.

Poundwise

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #40 on: January 15, 2017, 05:58:26 AM »
How are we doing, everyone?

I broke the chain yesterday. :~(

On the other hand, it was because I was going to bed later and later in order to get my 5 minutes of writing in after kids were asleep and other work done. I was trying to be creative at the time when I was most exhausted.I needed a reset, so I could go to bed at 9pm and get up extra early... which is what I did last night. Got up at 5:30 and put in almost two hours of writing, and my toddler hasn't woken up yet!

JoshuaSpodek

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #41 on: January 15, 2017, 07:47:02 AM »
Last year was my big year for writing and finishing my book, Leadership Step by Step. It launches on Amazon a month from tomorrow: https://www.amazon.com/Leadership-Step-Become-Person-Others-ebook/dp/B01HUER0ZQ/ref=sr_1_3_twi_kin_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1476913347&sr=1-3. I got my first hardcovers from the printer a couple weeks ago: http://joshuaspodek.com/theyre-hardcovers.

Last week I learned that Booklist is giving it a starred review. It has blurbs from bestsellers, top TED talkers, and luminaries like

  • Dan Pink
  • Marshall Goldsmith
  • Seth Godin
  • Presidential Medal of Freedom honoree Frances Hesselbein
  • Professors from Harvard, Columbia, NYU
  • A 4-star General

and more. Come to think of it, I should have approached MMM, since I've participated in this community for years, and I consider writing here, as with writing anywhere, practice.

I self-published two books before this one, but I consider this one on another level for going through an established publisher, which came from writing a book proposal before writing the book, which came from working with a professional agent, which came from writing for years, developing the core idea for the book, and telling people about the idea, which led a friend to introduce me to his friend, who is an agent.

Since it's not on sale yet, I don't know how successful it will become, though the response from the blurb writers has been positive, so I don't know if my experience is worth learning from, but of all the things that helped, the first was writing consistently for a long time. I've posted to my blog every day since 2011 -- http://joshuaspodek.com/archives. That meant over 2,000 posts when I started writing the book and nearly 2,500 today.

For me, I made writing not something I struggled to do consistently but like brushing my teeth -- something I wouldn't go to sleep without doing. Can you imagine going to bed without brushing your teeth? I don't know about you, but it nearly makes my skin crawl. Writing enough got me to where I feel the same about ending a day without writing. But I had to get there. People think I'm disciplined, which helps me write. They have it backward. The writing came first and developed the discipline. Their thinking is like thinking that people lift weights because they're strong. They started as weak as anyone and became strong because they lift weights.

Writing teaches you many skills valuable for writing: how to come up with ideas to write about, discipline, focus, editing, working through dry periods, handling criticism, sore shoulders, talking about your ideas, finding your voice, getting past clichés, and so on.

Writing consistently for a long time also reveals and develops passion, as with any craft. I kind of liked writing before. I love it now. There's no way I would have developed that passion without all the writing when I was tired, unmotivated, and so on. I kept writing. Writing consistently enabled me to live what I wrote, since I teach leadership, and clarify my goals. My goal is not "to write a book." The book is a means to an end, which is to enable people to practice what I teach, which is empathy, compassion, creating meaning, value, importance, and purpose in their lives and the lives of people around them, and things like that. I'll measure my success not by sales, but by feedback from people who improved their lives and relationships by doing the exercises in the book. That purpose motivates and guides me so I'm not just writing a book, but using the book as a medium to communicate and influence interested people. Our world and nation could use leadership with those skills, in my opinion. I could only refine, clarify, understand, and state this purpose from writing consistently for a long time.

Another critical element for me was the public accountability of posting publicly. At first I had few subscribers, but I still knew others could read my work and, more importantly, could tell if I didn't write anything.

A big help that came with working on the book was working with a professional editor, mainly my book agent helping me write my book proposal. I had to develop my craft enough to reach the point where I was worth her time, but then she helped my writing develop a lot more.

Anyway, I'm risking writing too much when my work hasn't reached the market yet, but I felt compelled to share what developed my craft to the point of having a book with prominent people supporting it:

  • Writing daily for five years, no exception
  • Public accountability
  • Professional editing
« Last Edit: January 15, 2017, 07:54:57 AM by JoshuaSpodek »

Mezzie

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #42 on: January 15, 2017, 09:06:16 AM »
Does it count if we're working on a script? My husband's the idea man for this one, but I'm the script doctor. Ideally we'll have a completed draft by summer.

I'm also toying with the idea of writing a book for new teachers. There are a lot of those out there, but few that address the poverty, homelessness, psychological disorders, and other special needs of students that we serve in impoverished urban areas. The great ones out there tend to focus on elementary (I work with teenagers) or specific skilks (e.g., literacy). I want to focus more on how not to get depressed or overwhelmed in the face of such need. An overwhelming number of teachers who start out in schools like mine leave the profession in 1-5 years when it's actually a wonderful place to work if you approach these challenges with the right attitude and strategies.
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SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #43 on: January 15, 2017, 03:23:24 PM »
Got up at 5:30 and put in almost two hours of writing, and my toddler hasn't woken up yet!

Looks like a little change did you good!  Way to kill that 5 min goal!  I think that more than makes up for not writing yesterday!


  • Writing daily for five years, no exception
  • Public accountability
  • Professional editing

Thanks for the advice from your personal experiences JoshuaSpodek.

Does it count if we're working on a script?

Absolutely! 



My weekly Update:
I tweaked my illustration from last week and am very happy with it now.  I also have finished up my illustration for this week and I ended up changing the narrative a bit.  There is something not quite right with it though...I am just not sure what it is.  So I will probably be tweaking it throughout the week to get something I am happy with.

How's everyone else doing?

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #44 on: January 15, 2017, 07:01:05 PM »
Last week I learned that Booklist is giving it a starred review.

CONGRATS!!!!

On that, on the happy blurbs, on completing the book, on your success in exploring a new path in writing...

Can you imagine going to bed without brushing your teeth?

Yes.

But I can't imagine going a day without writing :)

Izybat

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #45 on: January 20, 2017, 06:47:27 PM »
I just got back from a four day trip for my day job. I managed to write every day, which made me very happy. Since I went from east coast to west coast, my body clock was totally out of wack. I was waking up at 4:30 in the morning, so I decided to make the best of it! I even got writing done on the plane on the way back, despite the very cramped space.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #46 on: January 20, 2017, 09:30:18 PM »
Nicely done, Izybat :)

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #47 on: January 20, 2017, 09:35:11 PM »
I just got back from a four day trip for my day job. I managed to write every day, which made me very happy. Since I went from east coast to west coast, my body clock was totally out of wack. I was waking up at 4:30 in the morning, so I decided to make the best of it! I even got writing done on the plane on the way back, despite the very cramped space.

Doing anything productive on a plane is a feat in and of itself!!!  That's awesome!

Eirene

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #48 on: January 21, 2017, 02:25:28 PM »
Last year was my big year for writing and finishing my book, Leadership Step by Step. [...]
Thank you for sharing your experience. The bit about about writing coming before discipline absolutely struck a chord with me, in part because I want to write every single day in February. It has to be fiction which will be a huge challenge.

2017 being a non-leap year makes it a bit easier :)

SeaKayEl

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Re: Finish (or start) Writing Your Book 2017
« Reply #49 on: January 21, 2017, 06:45:12 PM »
Hit my goal of illustrating page 3 this week!  From everyone's advice here, seems like it's better to get the work on paper.  I am going to forgo my perfectionism (for the time being) and focus on getting rough draft illustrations regardless of how happy I am of them.  I can tweak later.  I think my perfectionism keeps me from progressing forward, so hopefully this will help.

Joon,  I picked up Bird by Bird at the Library today!  Thanks again for the suggestion.