I am fond of schedules. Time management? Sign me up! This year I have micromanaged my days and my free time. Not every minute of the day mind you but the general gist of the days are scheduled.
I was thinking these past few days that though I’ve started at least six short stories I have only finished one. One! I started that story in November and it took me until January to finish drafting it and actually send it out. Now I don’t know about you but that pace is just a tad bit too slow for me. I’m kinda amazed at how prolific Joyce Carol Oates is and I hope to emulate her one day. Plus I love her writing style. WE WERE THE MULVANEYS I TELL YOU!
So this is the writing schedule I have set up beside the 800 word goal I set for myself so I can finish the book. Write and finish a short story at least every two weeks. The first month has already passed. But hopefully I can get at least 18 stories out right? Is that too crazy? I’ve never backed down from a challenge though and I’m not about to start.
I started a new project for 2014 and without much preparation. A friend of mine posted about a challenge to write a novella in 60 days. The goal is to write 30,000 words. I was feeling like I should take a chance because what could happen besides me not failing to finish the challenge. The forum itself is not very active but I’ve been writing on the as of yet titled novella for the past four days. It’s about a divorced woman named Brenda that is contemplating plastic surgery while dealing with her issues surrounding her husband, her mother, and her daughter.
I also signed up for my second year of Get Your Words Out over on LJ. I didn’t meet the goal I sat in 2011 but I hope to meet it this year. I again chose the Basic Level of 200,000. I’m doing good so far. And I’m trying to carve in some time to play the Sims though my game is lagging like hell. Grrr.
After getting a favorable comment on my short story from someone I trust I decided it was good enough to put up for critique. I used modifiers way too much and I’m still having trouble placing that darn comma. But I agree with most of the critique and I’m reworking it. I’m planning on entering into the Critical Mass 2 here in Shreveport. The Literary prize is 2,000 and is reviewed by three critics. Ay I’m nervous but I’m going to do it. Gotta put my work out there right?
I finished reading Rough Magic by Paul Alexander which is a biography on Sylvia Plath. Her work ethic is so inspiring to me. She managed to work on her craft and deal with school and work and juggle a social life. I mean how? Damn girl.
The fourth draft of One Small Step has been finished. I realized while I was answering questions from a short story book I realized I had after all that my story was sort of disjointed. Jan hadn’t done anything to save her job in the second and third draft yet she was promoted which now that I see it seems really funny. So I reworked it and made her proactive. I’m waiting for someone to look over it. But I think this draft is better. I’m not sure if it’s perfect but it’s better.
I felt like writing some flash fiction. I have been adept at writing 100 words exactly though of course I slip up sometimes and leave out a word or two and it’s confusing. But I really like that format. I’m long-winded when I talk about I have this annoying quirk of being concise when I’m writing which is fine for flash but not so much for longer stuff.
But anyway. Here is the piece I wrote. The prompt was “Candy Apple Red”.
She wore her lipstick one way and that way was candy apple red.
Nina had started wearing lipstick when she fourteen. At first it was to impress some boy down the street but after that fizzled out she kept wearing it. Soon it became part of her identity. She simply did not feel like her if it was gone.
Every morning she would wake up and start her routine. Shower first and then dress. Standing in front of her mirror she would pucker before applying it. She would always smile afterwards. It made the lipstick look even better.
Well early this morning I finished working on a short story. It’s my first one that is self contained. I started a few weeks ago but then I fell into a funk so it got set on the backburner. But it is done! I’m going to have some people look over it before I even think about submitting it.
And while I’m talking about submitting, I’ve sent out a few of my poems to a literary magazine. This is the first time I’ve done this since I was like a teen and that whole deal was a vanity press though I didn’t realize it until like way later. I still wish I had a copy of that particular poem.
But today I have been productive. Of course my word count isn’t as high as it was last year but it’s still pretty good for someone that hasn’t been really focusing on writing like they should!