Wednesday, April 27, 2011

W is for.....

W is for.....Writing.

The writing bug hit me a couple years ago. I started working on a book in June of '09, and the plan is to finish the first draft this June. Two years may strike a lot of writers as way too long for a first draft, but it is what it is. I'm still working on the discipline thing, but I also don't want to make writing a chore. Writing is fun, and I want to keep it that way. For comparison, I'd love to hear how long other people have taken on first drafts.

I did take a break from the book to write a short story. A funny thing happened and it struck me as worth writing about. I'd read that writers are always working on more than one thing at a time, so I figured it was OK. I've sent the story out to a few places, but so far, no luck. Like they say, you're not a writer until you've been rejected. I would like to dedicate some more time to sending the story out. That's a pice of the writing process I hadn't really thought about, the work of getting something published. My goal is to spend a chunk of time this summer getting the story out to as many publications as possible. That way I'll feel like I gave the story a chance.

There is one other reason the book is taking so long. THE BLOG. I'd read somewhere or heard somewhere that writers need to have an online presence. This made sense, so I started the blog in January of 2010. I thought it would be a nice break from the book, while sticking to my goal of writing every day. I know I spend too much time on the blog, time I could be working on the book. I have to go back to the fun thing. The blog is fun. It may not be a book or even a short story, but it is writing. People are reading (thank you very much) what I write and giving feedback with comments. Seems to me that's what writing is all about.

Who knows where it all leads. If anywhere. Does there have to be a destination? Eventually I'll look for an agent, try the traditional publishing route. If that doesn't work there's always self-publishing. Either way, the odds of making any real money as a writer are long. I may never be able to quit my job and write full-time, but as long as I'm having fun, I'll keep writing.


  1. You have just inspired me to write the book that I have had in my head for the last 5 years.

  2. Squilla's AuntApril 27, 2011 at 7:16 AM

    Tim - can't wait to read the book and short story. But in the meantime, it's been fun to read and interact on the blog. Has the A-Z challenged inspired you to blog every day (she says hopefully)?

  3. It took me five years to complete my first novel. This second completed one took a little less than two years. I'm hoping the trend continues and I write the next one in nine months. :)

    Blogging is a distraction, but it's a good one. And it is writing, right? Writing a novel in isolation can be done, but it's no fun. Being part of the writing community is important and fulfilling.

    Keep doing what you're doing. You're a writer because you write.

  4. 16 months to first draft, 20 more for revisions, not done yet.

  5. OT: I'd think with your productivity on the blog, you could crank that book out no problem.

    Squilla: I have enjoyed the A-Z Challenge, but man, blogging every day is way too time-consuming.

    LG: Thanks for sharing your experience, it helps to know what other writers have done.

    Munk: That's interesting, more time to revise than to do the first draft. Good to know. I'm curious, why do you think revisions are taking longer than the first draft?

  6. I have never considered writing a book, but as I get more comfortable writing with the blog, who knows. Will look forward to seeing yours come out.

  7. Great post as usual. I completely agree about the blogging, I feel like I'm spending too much time on it, but I really enjoy it. So I've finally convinced myself that that's okay and the blogging is writing too.
    I've loved the A-Z Challenge but I'm definitely looking forward to going back to posting a few times a week instead of every day.

  8. James: Thanks man. Judging by your productivity on your blog, I bet you have a book in you.

    Julie: I agree about posting. I was probably posting twice a week before the challenge, and while I've enjoyed the challenge too, I'll be glad to get back to that pace.

  9. Life is about the journey, not just the destination (and so is writing!). Try not to concentrate on the "two years", because the fact is, you could have done nothing in those two years - at least you have something to show for your time!

  10. You may be surprised that while you write, someone may approach you one day, based on your work. That takes some of the leg work out of trying to get published and could be used as a source of inspiration to keep writing what you love :)

    The Madlab Post