Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Finding Bits of Time

I've never been one of those people who can sit down and write in snatches here and there. I like to have huge blocks of time where I can really get into the "zone" and just hammer out a bunch of scenes. I love that feeling. The phone can ring, my husband can try to talk to me, my kids can be knocking at the door and I completely block it all out. In the past, that's always when I've been able to do my best writing.

Well, huge blocks of time are a luxury that I don't have anymore. Nap time in a thing of the past, summer means that I have all four kids home, and I have a sweet little baby who really seems to like being held by me. So I've decided that I need to take advantage of every bit of time I get for my writing.

Some advice I've read on this is:
--Think about my wip during any downtime or while doing mindless activities (like laundry)
--Always carry a notebook/laptop with me so that I can jot down thoughts or scenes whenever I get a spare minute
--Get into my characters head as soon as I can, so that when I sit, I don't have to go through the transition phase of being Kaylee to writing for the character that can take a few paragraphs (if I'm lucky) to get into.
--Stop trying to make everything perfect right out the gate. First drafts can be embarrassing. It's okay.
--If I keep waiting for the perfect time to write, it's never going to happen. Even 25 words is better than 0.

What are your thoughts on this? Can you write in just small snatches of time here and there? Do you have any additional advice?

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Editing styles

A few weeks ago my husband stopped at Home Depot on the way home from our son's baseball game to get a weed burner. We've been having a huge weed problem in our backyard since I am usually the weed-puller, and I've been a little out of commission for the past nine months or so, and as a result, our backyard was starting to look like a desert jungle (trust me, they exist).

This is how my husband takes care of weeds:



Fast, all-encompassing, rip-the-bandaid off style. Since our garden is dead (thank you, desert rats) burning everything works for us.

We don't have a picture of how I take care of weeds because I do it the normal, non-Tim-the-tool-man Taylor way. Pulling each and every weed up by its root, slow but efficient. Precise.

I'm just getting ready to edit the first draft of my  current wip and I've been thinking about my editing style. I edit the same way I weed. Bit by bit, day by day over several weeks. I like to take my time with my editing, seriously thinking about every sentence. It blows my mind when people can edit their entire book in just a day or two. It takes me weeks to finish editing--longer if I'm doing major rewrites.

But just like my husband and the weeds, both ways get the job done--only he's watching the game in the air conditioned house after about fifteen minutes, while I'm out in the heat for hours. But at least the ground isn't charred when I finish.

What's your editing style?