Julie Duffy

  • Today I’m encouraging you to write a seasonal story, just not one for this season.

    Of course, you can write a Christmas/Hannukah/Kwanzaa/New Year/Festivus story if you want, but if you’re thinking about […]

  • I did not meeting my word count goals for my novel in November, but it was stupidly optimistic, given all else I had going on, and the good news is that I wrote more than I would have, otherwise, and broke a few sticking points in the story so I’m pretty happy. I did fufill my other commitment, which was to catch up on the online training I was…[Read more]

  • I’m with you on the ‘thinking and priority-setting’ for this 2018. My podcasts will be about that, this month.

    Does it feel good to have completed work, even if it is “stinky”? Did you benefit from forging ahead and getting words down?

  • Hey! Just yesterday, I posted my playlist/soundtrack for the novel I’m working on! Great minds…

    I’m seeing a theme in these posts this month: how to balance it all?

    Sounds like you’re making progress though. I do think sometimes time away from the novel (with thinking) can be beneficial, but I tend to find I need to then plunge back into…[Read more]

  • I think this sounds like a good plan, and I certainly relate to the urge to do lots of different things. But your novel goals are working, so stick with it! And you’re throwing in a single short story to keep you fresh. Good luck!

  • Yay! for the NaNo goals. What a great feeling.
    Boo! to the sickness.

    Sounds like you have a solid plan for December. Chill, do a little writing, a lot of socializing and come back refreshed in Jan!

  • Every month we gather here to discuss what we’ve achieved and commit to making more progress in our creative lives in the coming month. We call it our   Serious Writer’s Accountability Group or SWAGr, for short! […]

    • I succeeded in my NaNo goals for the first time and actually won. *party favor noises* So November worked out great (except for sickness at the end, boo!).

      This month I’m going to take it easy. I’m starting out the month sick, which is not the best time for writing, and with all the holiday plans we’ve got as a family, I need some time away from constant writing to just relax. I’ve still got a few fic exchanges I need to work on, so I’m going to focus on those before anything else.

    • Hi, all,

      For November, I planned a rebel-Nanowrimo: writing and editing 3 (maybe 4) short stories for upcoming submissions, varying in length from 1000 to 10,000 words. This sort of worked out. The 1000 word flash fiction piece was written, edited, and submitted (and is, right now, on a contest website to vote on). The 10,000 word story has a complete draft that I’ve gone through it once, but it needs some more editing before submission. One other story is over half-done. Not quite as much I had hoped, but the long story ended up needing a lot more thinking time to work out plot and character issues than I had anticipated. So, overall I am happy with the amount of time I spent on the stories.

      For December, I’m going to finish the two unfinished stories above and go back to my novel (which I thought about a good deal during November, including building a playlist/soundtrack :-)).

      • Hey! Just yesterday, I posted my playlist/soundtrack for the novel I’m working on! Great minds…

        I’m seeing a theme in these posts this month: how to balance it all?

        Sounds like you’re making progress though. I do think sometimes time away from the novel (with thinking) can be beneficial, but I tend to find I need to then plunge back into it until I burn through all those scenes/thoughts and come to another sticking point.

        Where’s your story? Where can we vote?

    • I totally relate to your issues about balancing novel and short story writing! I have been going through the same thing for the last year. I totally lose momentum on the novel when I take time off from it. On the other hand, I think there can also be some benefit in allowing ideas to percolate in one’s mind over time.

      As I said elsewhere in this thread, I spent November working on short stories, but I was thinking about aspects of my novel. I still have some work to do on a couple of stories, but this month is back to serious novel editing and I’ve spent yesterday and today re-orienting myself. So, no solution, but sympathy!

    • I lost my Swagr last month! I hope it’s not too late to get in for December. 🙂

      November was pretty busy for me. I did a NaNo rebel run (one novella and a bunch of short stories) and broke my 50k-word goal, which is more than I have ever written before in a month. That’s the good bit. The bad bit is that a lot of it stinks and needs editing. Besides, I didn’t manage to finish my novella.

      My goals for December then will be:
      – Finish the novella, give it a quick edit and get it in front of a beta reader
      – Do some thinking and decide what my priorities will be in 2018.

      I’ve been following Julie’s advice from October and journaling about my writing goals lately. Let’s see what comes out of that.

      • I’m with you on the ‘thinking and priority-setting’ for this 2018. My podcasts will be about that, this month.

        Does it feel good to have completed work, even if it is “stinky”? Did you benefit from forging ahead and getting words down?

    • I think this sounds like a good plan, and I certainly relate to the urge to do lots of different things. But your novel goals are working, so stick with it! And you’re throwing in a single short story to keep you fresh. Good luck!

    • I did not meeting my word count goals for my novel in November, but it was stupidly optimistic, given all else I had going on, and the good news is that I wrote more than I would have, otherwise, and broke a few sticking points in the story so I’m pretty happy. I did fufill my other commitment, which was to catch up on the online training I was doing.

      My December goals are:

      * Research write and submit article under contract (by Dec 18)
      * Podcast & blog weekly
      * Write 16000 words on — and finish— the novel (this is a stretch goal, but it could happen.

      We have a quiet Christmas break planned, so I’m hoping to sneak a lot of fiction into the early mornings after the article is done.

      Good luck all!

  • This story comes from the 2017 collection of Daniel Alarcón’s stories The King Is Always Above The People.

    I picked up the collection because I saw it on a ‘recommended reading’, highlighting n […]

  • This week I talk about ways to make your life easier by embracing the idea of decision-making, both in your writing and in your writing practice.

    You can read a (slightly altered) version of this, […]

  • There is still time left this year to meet some of your goals. The question is which ones?

    You probably had a list of projects you wanted to write this year, and there are only two possibilities […]

  • For all you NaNo novelists out there, deep in the belly of a fast-written novel, I have a suggestion for a way to revitalize your writing and your excitement about your project. For everyone (else?) I talk about […]

  • OK, here’s my plan for November:
    1. Write an average of 1059 words/weekday on the current novel and finish it (this is already off the rails on Day 2, but that’s because I had some planning to do. I’m expecting to fly through the word count tomorrow. That’s why I made it an average.)

    2, Catch up with and keep up with the online training I’ve…[Read more]

  • That’s fantastic, Lisa. Well done!

    Consistent progress is really powerful. Keep up the good work!

  • Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.
    -Seneca

  • That’s amazing! Good luck with your November goals (though it doesn’t sound like you’ll need much luck)

  • That’s fabulous! Well done, you.

    I love the idea of a thread to connect all your stories. It’s a great way to keep yourself entertained and to intrigue readers. Good luck!

  • It IS hard to resist the lure of NaNoWriMo! Good luck!

    Well done on your October achievements.

  • Every month we gather here to discuss what we’ve achieved and commit to making more progress in our creative lives in the coming month. We call it our   Serious Writer’s Accountability Group or SWAGr, for short! […]

    • It IS hard to resist the lure of NaNoWriMo! Good luck!

      Well done on your October achievements.

    • That’s fabulous! Well done, you.

      I love the idea of a thread to connect all your stories. It’s a great way to keep yourself entertained and to intrigue readers. Good luck!

    • Well, October went really well for me. I wrote 750+ words every day, wrote two chapters for a short story, and finished 29 fanfics!

      This month is NaNo, and since I’ve never been good at doing a single project, this time I’m splitting it up into a few projects. I’ll be doing a lot of fandom exchanges these next few months, so I’ll be working on those with my goal to hit 50,000 words total of everything. That feels much more manageable after last month, so yay!

    • I’m late posting my SWAGR Goals for November, and today promises to be another crazy day, so I hope you’ll pardon my brevity.

      I will write 396 words a day toward the completing my novel’s first draft. Met my October goals and have written close to 31,000 words total on my novel.

    • OK, here’s my plan for November:
      1. Write an average of 1059 words/weekday on the current novel and finish it (this is already off the rails on Day 2, but that’s because I had some planning to do. I’m expecting to fly through the word count tomorrow. That’s why I made it an average.)

      2, Catch up with and keep up with the online training I’ve been doing. I have two courses overlapping, which was bad planning, but I didn’t set the schedule and both were great opportunities. Incidentally, if you’re struggling at all with novel writing and want a good guide, check out Jerry B. Jenkins’ Your Novel Blueprint course.

      3, Write a 1st draft of a Christmas story (this is a bit of a stretch goal, but I really do want to make it happen).

      4, Plan my new big, secret, non-fiction project. (Gulp, but this also ties in with #2, and I want to have this ready to roll out in mid-December.)

      OK, well, that focuses the mind. I seem to think I can do an awful lot more with my 7:30-3 workday than I usually achieve. But these goals will force me to at least try to keep those hours for my prioritized work and resist doing family/house support stuff at least during most of those hours. Maybe.

    • Hello fellow writers,

      For October, I wanted to throw out submissions and as a result, had 3 poems published on three different online literary journals and blogs. Hooray! I also, wrote a few flash fiction pieces and did a rough outline for Nanowrimo.

      Goal for November is to complete 3 short stories + 1667 words per day for NaNoWriMo, which should result in at least 50K words of Book 1 of my YA Fantasy Trilogy!
      I also want to submit at least 2-3 short stories this month (I’ve only been submitting poetry so far).
      Since I am going down to a part-time job, I will have more time to write this month 🙂

  •  Writing the first line of your story is tough. Opening lines must:  Set up the main question the reader is going to be asking all the way through Establish the voice of the protagonist/narrator Set the tone G […]

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