Welcome to June, and another IWSG meeting. We appreciate Alex J. Cavanaugh and his gang who make certain IWSG runs smoothly. IWSG posts the first Wednesday of each month. Find the entire list of participants here.
Our purpose is to share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!
Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG.
Our optional question this month is:
For how long do you shelve your first draft, before reading it and re-drafting? Is this dependent on your writing experience and the number of stories/books under your belt?
I sometimes shelve my work for years but I don’t think that is actually shelving. That’s probably closer to procrastination or losing interest. But to answer the question, for me every story is different. I guess my answer depends on how excited I feel about the story, how rough a draft it is, and if I’ve written it for a publisher, a magazine or a contest. Maybe it’s even a gut feeling thing.
As mentioned in a previous post, I have a series of four novellas that I wrote several years ago in quick succession. I haven’t looked at them since. I even made a Pinterest page for each one. I’m sure if and when I get back to them I’ll be appalled at the convoluted mess, or excited for the challenge. I’m hoping for the latter.
When it comes to revision, sometimes I’ll revise as I go, and then I’ll put the story aside for a few weeks.
I call myself an intuitive writer. Some of my books and stories spill out of me while others require an outline. Don’t ask me why. I think each story sort of has a life of its own and “tells” me how it wants to be treated. That sounds weird, doesn’t it, but I’ll bet some of you know what I mean.
I come from a journalism background so I’ve taught myself to write pretty fast. There usually isn’t a lot of “shelf” time when you write for newspapers or biweekly magazines. That’s helped my fiction writing, but it usually means more revision. Writing fast is great for just getting the story down.
For the past several days, I’ve been playing around with plottr. I think I talked about it in my previous blogpost. I’m really enjoying “constructing” my newest book and plottr is helping me pull together the middle where I often flounder.
If any if you have a manuscript that took off on so many rabbit trails that you lost your way, I encourage you to give plottr a try. I’ll bet you can get that novel back on track using their 30 day free version. And then, you’ll want to buy!
Now, a bit of good news I want to share: I entered a “hook” contest that Books and Such Literary Management sponsored in celebration of their 25th anniversary. The hook had to be 25 words or less. Today I learned I’m one of 25 semifinalist out of 317 submissions. I won a $10 Starbucks gift card and I’m invited to send a proposal based on my hook to them by June 15th.
How fun is that?
I’m curious: do you submit to contests? If so, what kind?