If You're Trying to Do Two Things at Once, Pick One
Organizing your Creative Life in Thirteen Weeks, Week 10
Prolific science fiction novelist Sarah Hoyt follows up her "Your Novel in 13 Weeks" PJ Lifestyle series with a new weekly experiment each Saturday to figure out the best way for all creative types working from home to better organize their efforts.
Week Zero, Introduction: Organizing Your Creative Life In 13 Weeks
Week 1/2, Preparation: The Case For Making Lots of Lists
Week One: How to Make Your Mind Like Water
Week Three: The Lone Writer Against The Time Masters
Week Four: How to Tame Your Subconscious
Week Seven: 4 Tips So You Don't Organize Yourself to Death
Week Eight: Organizing your Writing Life When Words Fail You
Patricia Wentworth has a novel by that title. Exclamation mark and all. I don’t remember if this was her first book that I bought – I do remember that that book grabbed me right from the title, and since that was also the very first word on the book, it caught me and made me read it right to the end.
Putting your character in a situation where they must do or die right off the bat will grab the reader and not let go. At least if you have the ability to keep the pace going the rest of the book. (Okay, Wentworth slacks off a little. She’s more romantic suspense than suspense.)
So, does this mean that I’ve given up on organizing my creative life and taken to dispensing writing advice again?
Not exactly. I’m here to tell you that finding myself in the position of that character in that book is a lot less fun than it is reading about it.
No, I wasn’t lost in fog outside a creepy old house. I didn’t hear steps behind me, and someone didn’t pass me, running, while yelling “run.” Well, not literally. In a metaphorical sense, it came pretty close.
The good news is that I’ve finally finished revising Witchfinder and sending it off to editors, including the real one (though it will come out from a small indie press, Goldport – mostly because even though I love Baen books, I want to keep a foot on the indie thing. It’s a new avenue, and I like exploring.)
The bad news is that I’ve still not finished Through Fire, mostly through having tried to back up and do it from a different perspective. Don’t go there. Just don’t.
Part of the issue with the two books was something that I’ve heard of other writers running into: you’re working on a piece, which blocks the other piece you’d like to work on. This happens.