Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Writer's Organized Mess

I spent the weekend of the 18-19th tidying up and organizing the chaos of that peculiar aspect of my life that I call WRITING, and let me tell you, it was like sailing on the good ship Lollipop. Yeah, it was just that bad, and because it was just that bad, you know damn well I'm gonna tell you about it, because not only is that how I am, but gosh darn it, I really need to fill up this space with nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, conjunctions, prepositions and the other assorted gobbledy gook that passes for mediocre writing.


1} The first thing that I managed to accomplish was to finish the second round of editing Line 21, which somehow grew by another three hundred words or so (Okay, I had to lengthen the prologue and re-write a couple of key parts elsewhere, so I really knew why it grew, so take a number and stand in line to sue me). After printing out another clean copy and taking a trip to my local Staples to print out two more copies (will explain the extra copy in a minute), I got started on the second thing that I managed to accomplish.

2} I spent six hours writing another 1200 words for my latest project Dandelion Tears, thereby completing a rather lengthy part 3 (17 pages). I still know where I want to go with this things because I still have the outline stashed in my memory for it. I know, I know, it sounds painful and it really was. Tell me, do you have problems like that, in which it takes you that many hours to write that many words?

3} After I finished my latest installment, I got the itch to surf New Pages  again to see if I could find any more writing contests, and sure enough, I did. In addition to the one for my recently completed book (see? extra copy explained), which curious enough met the criteria by 2 pages, I found four more contests for the one good short story (Red Stripe) that didn't make it to FGS. So I'm spending the next couple of weeks getting things organized for that, since I have one deadline of Oct 1st, two on Oct 15th and one on Oct 31st.

4} After I got done picking up a few necessities to complete step 3 (9 x13 envelopes and large rubber bands), I decided to reorg my....yeech....incomplete writings and place them in a nice neat pile of importance. Well, not really a pile of importance, but simply a slush pile so that when I walk into my den, there they are yelling at me to write.

The answer to the question that you didn't really want to ask but need to if you ever want to get to the end of this post is this:

Line 21: It's finished and all printed out, and now its patiently waiting for me to write a synopsis so that I can move on to the next inevitable step of the "wanna get published so bad that I'll do anything to get noticed".

A Lascivious Limbo: I decided to take another stab at completing this particular manuscript, since this is the one that I put aside back in early February to write Line 21. This one is about 85% complete and is waiting for me to write a eulogy, a wake/funeral, a suicide and completing the other main plot of the book. Please click on the link for a refresher on what this book is all about and please note that the link for the excerpt in that post does not work.

It's Just Business: This was the mini-novella that I wanted to enter into a few contests that I mentioned last week, but after spending about an hour or so editing and taking notes, I quickly realized that it needs a seriously major overhaul to make it workable. Please note that it also contains a link to FGS that may or may not be workable for you.

Image: This is a story that I also wrote around the same time as Red Stripes. Whereas the inspiration for that story was a supermarket cashier dressed up like a kitten for Halloween, the inspiration for this particular story was this piece of flash. The reason I've decided to work on this, is that I need another story that could possibly meet the criteria of minimum length to be considered for a novella (about 18k). I'm about 4K short, but this story can use both a little tidying and a little expansion at the same time (found some continuity issues that need to be addressed in greater detail). This was also another one of my stories that I did a modicum of research on as well (Dante, as well as the Christian, Jewish and Islamic faiths). And if you click on this link, it will take you over to Partially Yours where you will be able to read an excerpt.

Taxi: This particular story is one that I wrote waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay back during my forgettable year of 2006. While I was creating a few stories for the second incarnation of FGS, I blew the dust bunnies off of this one and was going to post it on there as well. Unfortunately for everyone in involved, this one was so badly written (check out the link to just how bad it was) but I wrote the entire thing without knowing what the plot was then and still don't know what its all about now. However, I intend to rewrite this bad boy and hopefully post it on FGS someday in the near future.

A Betrayal Of Vows: Way back when (like early 2008), I started writing the novel to my last self-pubbed book Betrayed!, and as matter of record, for the longest time before I did that chapbook I spent a good month waffling between the chapbook and the novel. What I have written so far is ten chapters which are unequally split between the two plot lines and in fact, the six chapters that make up the main plot of the chapbook end exactly where the opening scene of the chapbook (Ray and Gwendolyn at poolside) starts. The other four cover the secondary plot of the chapbook (Gwendolyn and Bobbi). This was my first real attempt at writing two completely separate yet stand alone plots for a book. I wanted to alternate chapters until I got to the very end when both plots wind up converging at the end to finish the book and in fact, I did do that on a smaller scale with the chapbook. This book was also my first serious attempt at doing gobs of research in order to make everything appear as accurate as possible (hence the interesting locale of Willis Wharf instead of Virginia Beach). This book also will be needing a serious overhaul and gutting as well.

So as you can see, I have a lot of things to keep the old version of ADD/ADHD somewhat occupied, so long as I don't fry my brain out by chanting, "Rewrite or write? Rewrite or write? Rewrite or write?"

No quirky saying to close out this post because frankly, the only thing I can think of is one from the Shoe Sunday comic of September 5, 2010:

You are innocent until proven penniless.


  1. You've got a whole latte writing projects going on here. Isn't it interesting how once the projects build, the momentum and ideas just keep sparking? I write a weekly itinerary to keep everything prioritized as things move along. Good luck with the contests and querying!

  2. My revisions always seem to tack on a few hundred extra words. I edit, edit, edit, clipping all unnecessary words and dead weight, but then, "Oh, this scene needs a little more..." And I'm right back at the exact same word count I started with (if I'm lucky).

  3. I admire how much time you put into your writing. And love that Shoe quote. :)

  4. Joanne: Sometimes the added sparking of ideas can be a curse as well. I decided to organize my incompleted writings because I was starting to freeze up on what to work on next. At least this way, I got something right there saying, "Feed me!"

    If I can get at least an honorable mention this time around for either the story or the book, I'll be happy.

    Avery: Many thanks for stopping by to say hi.

    I 100% totally agree with the revision growing. The first round of editing I did for Line 21 I clipped a net total of 481 words. With the second round of editing, after I took the critique advice of a fellow writer/blogger, it grew by another 210 words.

    It seems like the more you fix, the longer it gets.

    Lynn: Thanks. I always needed something outside of work to keep me focused, and writing/blogging has become the one thing that I feel very comfortable in doing.

    I love "Shoe". Sue McNeilly has done a fine job of keep the strip alive, and I thought this quote was just so dead on in today's climate.

  5. My oh my! Lots of reading for me.

    Here's a saying from Mr. RK, when I told him it took all kinds of people to make a world: "No it doesn't, we're just stuck with the kinds that are out there!"

  6. R: Perhaps there are. Reading that is. Most of those are incompletes, although all were written in the various stages of my journeys. It's interesting to read some of the stuff that I wrote say a year ago and compare it to the stuff I've written now.

    Interesting saying by the Mr. there.

  7. Sometimes I think the most enjoyable thing about writing is the reorganizing of items.

  8. Charles: I think there's something to be said for that. When I started putting my items in some kind of order, I got to reexamining them with a different eye, like "how can improve this, or how can I get unstuck and complete it?"

  9. I feel your pain. So many stories to tell. So little time.

  10. Travis: Not so much as too little time as not enough me time in order to get out what I want to write.

  11. Your creative mind is always working. I envy all your ideas :) Do you take a special vitamin or something? LOL.

  12. Kelly: Sometimes I do take special vitamins, but the most part, I just delve deep within that tiny little brain of mind to pull out ideas that are dripping with natural goodness.


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