Monday, October 31, 2011

Off to work I go...

The longer I'm in the writing business, the more I see how much hard work it takes to stay on top of things. If you're indie published, you are running your own company and you have a dozen hats to wear. Marketing, Cover Art, Scheduling, Editing, Social Networking, etc. etc. etc.

And then there's fixing the occasional computer glitch (IT Department). Ugh. I won't go into the gory details of the fight I had with Word yesterday.

I have a feeling that even if I could stay at home full time, there still wouldn't be enough hours in the day. But it's a fun life. I'm not complaining. Much.

It's just that what has dawned on me recently is that you can end up using all the business tasks you have to get done to fall into that nasty writer habit of NOT writing. Avoiding your WIP. Procrastination. Writer's block. Whatever name you give it.

And that's not a good thing when writing for a living is your goal(!). In fact it's scarier than The Walking Dead. (Had to throw in a Halloween twist.)

But I've found a solution for that dilemma. At least for its current incarnation. It's Dean Wesley Smith's Killing the Sacred Cows of Publishing.  

Dean Wesley Smith's has a resume as long as my arm. Probably as long as his arm (he looks a lot bigger than me). He's been an editor, a publisher. He's written comic books, the Star Trek books, and over 90 novels. This man knows how to write fast. (Oh, he's also the husband of the fabulous Kristine Kathryn Rusch.)

His recommended method is controversial and contrary to most advise I've heard. In his chapters on Rewriting, he says to write without revising and send out your work or self-publish it, and go on to the next project. Say what??? No revising??? Well, he means his definition of revising. You can revise, but it has to be in "creative voice." You can't critique yourself like a high school English teacher and expect to come up with something new and different, he says. In a weird kind of way, it makes sense.

But what I learned the most about myself from his post is that I'm a cycler. I do go back and "fix things," as he calls it, and add new stuff as I think of it. And that has gotten me working on my new WIP. It's gotten me writing again after being off for more than a month. This week I wrote almost 7,000 words. Just in time for NaNo.

So thank you, Dean Wesley Smith! Right now, I think I owe you my sanity. If you're a writer, check out his posts and see what you think. If you're a reader, he's got a ton of short stories available.

Now excuse me, I've got to go write. :)


  1. I tend to write more dialog first, then layer in other things. After that I look at repetition and other errors. Maybe if I wrote like I did for my first book where I would edit the previous days writing before writing new, then I might be able to follow this path. Maybe. :)

    Thanks for pointing me in this direction. I'll have to check out his writing.


  2. Thanks for the Tweet, Tami. :) Sounds like you might be a cycler, depending on how far you get before you start the layering. I forgot to mention the Dean Wesley Smith specifically states his methods are for advanced writers, those who have studied the craft of storytelling and put in their first 1,000,000 words. I think you're in that category. I'm not sure I agree with him about not rewriting a story, but you certainly shouldn't get obsessive about it. Fresher is always better.