Overall the year has got off to a good start regarding the writing goals I have set myself. I have got on with some better than others, but have also identified a couple of problems with my plan which I have rectified, or will do so in the coming month.
Monday – querying agents/editing book 1
I have queried 3 agents this month. My plan for February is to refresh my synopsis and query letter(s), and to ask a couple more people if they could critique the first three chapters before I send it off to anyone else. I will also be moving this to a Tuesday as I do not have computer access Monday mornings which has made this goal a bit tricky and I have been doing it on Tuesdays instead! Silly me not to think about that in the first place…
Tuesday – short stories
This is the goal that has not gone very successfully. I started off fairly well. I was making the effort at least, although it ended up in a few unfinished stories and little motivation to continue, much least to write anything competition worthy. I just told myself I needed to get into the habit, to practice, and just enjoy the process rather than thinking about competitions, but this did not do much good.
Wednesday – reading
My reading this month has gone very well. I finished ‘Grimm Tales’ by Philip Pullman and ‘Danger! Cosmetics to Go!’ by Mira Manga (the story behind the company the came before Lush), and I am currently reading ‘P.S’ I Love You’ by Cecelia Ahern and a business book about running a coffee shop. I am more or less on schedule, and I have also been reading writing magazines. Not quite finished yet but I probably haven’t been using my time most efficiently – I need to use my Wednesday mornings for magazines, and leave the evenings and weekends for books.
Thursday – blog post
It took a couple of weeks to get on the Thursday track due to holidays, etc. but I have still managed to write a post every week and I feel very proud of myself. I don’t have any themes running through them, but I have lots of ideas for future posts and I don’t think that matters. I am writing, I am writing about what I am interested in, and that is the main thing. Over time, I will try to write more out of my comfort zone, maybe have a theme for the month, try and get myself out there a bit more, but right now I am focussing on getting the words down (especially as the short story thing hasn’t been working out as yet).
Friday – editing book 2
I suspect a blog post about this coming soon! I have got off to a good start. Now done any editing as such just yet, but lots of planning, thinking and note taking. I have been trying to fit the storyline onto a plot template because all along I have felt this story has not had the flow of book 1. This led me to the conclusion that I should combine books 2 and 3 and make them one book. However, having looked at the plot outline of both books I now know this isn’t suitable. They are better as they are. Book 2, so long as I make sure the purpose is clear throughout, actually fits within the realms of all these plot templates that exist. The only potential issue with the plot is that it ends on something of a cliffhanger. The story is complete in itself, but book 3 then has to exist because it leads right into it.
So, my plan for February stays the same Wednesday through to Friday. I will move querying agents and editing book 1 to Tuesday which leaves Monday free – not for short stories although they may come eventually – for something I omitted. All those pesky little jobs like ‘thank you’ letters, Birthday cards, updating Harry’s scrapbook. Things that I struggle to find the motivation to do in the evenings and weekends. However, they’re still writing so I don’t feel bad including them here! Harry’s scrapbook itself is like a story, a documentation in his voice of all the places he has been and special events he has attended. And I have got very behind! So that is now my Monday task.