Affirmation: My Year of Writing

I’m now two full months into my Year of Writing and I have 61,000 words. My biggest concern is that my storyline seems to lack sufficient ‘tension’. I know I can fix this with some clever editing, still…

Anyway, this is what I’ve learnt recently:

1. Don’t over-think a scene – write it down as soon as you can, then edit it on the page. Otherwise, chances are, your idea will never leave your head.

2. SHOWING is the best way to TELL, even in YA. (If you ‘tell’ something when you could ‘show’ it, you are mistrusting and excluding the reader.)

3. Reading other people’s prose with a critical eye is the best form of research that you can do… You can’t write if you don’t read.

GOALS: Trust yourself. Write more. Eat well. Sleep when possible.

N.B. I’m also having some issues transferring my draft between Word (on my Microsoft desktop) and Pages (on my iPad) – the iPad seems to mess up the formatting pretty badly. I did have it in docX format, so I’ve decided try RTF now and see if that makes a difference.

13 thoughts on “Affirmation: My Year of Writing

  1. I love this!! I’m actually thinking about writing. Well… I’ve been doing the thinking part for years, about to start the writing part. It’s certainly a scary goal but I love your goals and what you’ve learned!

    Awesome job on the 61,000!

    • Thanks, I think it’s really great that you’re finally going to ‘put pen to paper’. 🙂 I think writing a story is something you do one day at a time – so go slow and have fun with it. Show no fear!

  2. That’s such an impressive word count, I’m so proud of you! I agree that learning to “just write” as opposed to over-thinking really does help – that’s something I’m trying to pick up on as well. (:

  3. Great going. I always thought being a critic is way easier than being a writer, so came up with rubbish excuses whenever anyone asked me to write anything.

    I’m sure your story will be a great success. Best of luck.

  4. Those are fantastic things you’ve learned! I hate it when there’s a lot of telling in a novel because it’s totally excluding readers to let them draw lines and ideas themselves.

    AND WOW, that’s a lot of words. Great job! Lovely post 🙂

    • I was hoping to have my first draft completed by the end of March, so I’m a bit behind… I think I have too many ‘black parrots’ in my head at the moment – I need to focus on the writing!

  5. I love reading your ‘My Year of Writing’ meme, especially since I want to write more this year. 🙂 I really agree with #3! I’ve been finding myself going “Why did __ work and not __?” when I’m reading now.

    Happy writing! 🙂

    Alice @ Alice in Readerland

    • Reading with a critical eye is really hard for me, especially when I’m reading a great book – all the words turn to images and emotions, so I read really fast and stop thinking about the technical stuff. 😦

  6. 61,000 words is amazing, congratulations on your work so far! I agree with all the advice you state here, especially the showing as opposed to telling. I feel like this principle is even more prominent in YA because teens have such an immediacy about them and the way they perceive the world around them – it’s intense and immense. Great post and I look forward to reading more of your writing. (:

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