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01 October 2015 @ 12:21 pm
Meme: First Line from Last Ten Stories; Writing Update  

Saw this meme today in attempting to begin to catch up on my flist maybe just a little.  I cheated a bit, in that I used the first two or three lines for a couple.  Also, this represents the first lines of the last few chapters from my novel, as I haven't been writing much - if any - fanfic lately.

1. JENNY ADAIR (17) never stops moving with a boundless, jittery energy from room to room.

2. I believe we've been here in Transoceanus for four months now?

3. JOHAN (V.O.) Heinrich, tell me a story.

4. Perhaps it was only a coincidence, but Hermann didn't think so.

5. Calisia was a charming little town northeast of Omitaqua, built on bluffs overlooking the ocean.

6. A clearing in the woods. Green, birds singing, like a poem or some shit. Daryl made it no further, dropping to his knees.

7. Evenfall Hall, like any castle in the Seven Kingdoms, was filled with many particular odors.

8. It had been their last night together in the wild, though of course neither knew it at the time.

9. The walls were thicker at the bottom than at the top, like an old pane of glass.

10. Shouts at the end of the corridor. Shouts that were coming their way. Claudia slid her right hand up her left bracer, drawing out the dagger there, spinning it free of the linen.

As far as writing goes, for the last year I've been writing primarily on my novel The Orphan Queen, as well as two screenplays.  Rewrites and edits on a screenplay I optioned last fall (my first option!), which is ostensibly being sent around to directors right now?  I don't know; I haven't heard from the producer who optioned it in about two months.  The other is a script that I started literally a decade ago, that the producer read and liked the concept of, but he had a lot of good notes and said that it felt a little dated.  And it totally did; even though my last rewrite of that script had been 2010, it's amazing how much technology's changed and such.  So I'm currently about two-thirds through a page-one rewrite of that one.  I've been pretty consistently writing every single day, and it's become so much of a habit that I don't even really think about it anymore.  It's like, what else would I be doing with my time?  It would be cool if something happened with the first screenplay (The Dead House, which I think I wrote about on here once upon a time), but that's just a bonus, and not the reason why I sit down and write.

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there's coffee in that nebulaun_crayon_rouge on October 1st, 2015 06:59 pm (UTC)
"I've been pretty consistently writing every single day, and it's become so much of a habit that I don't even really think about it anymore."

I would love so much to get there... May I ask how you achieved it?

Edited at 2015-10-01 07:00 pm (UTC)
Shannonkungfuwaynewho on October 1st, 2015 07:51 pm (UTC)
A few different things. One, I write a lot at work. When I'm stationed by the self-check machines here in the library, or when I'm answering phones, there can be a fair amount of down time. So writing's better than nothing. Two, I treat myself and go out and get a nice coffee about once a week for a longer writing or editing session. That makes it something to look forward to! And I'm almost always working on more than one thing at a time, so if I'm not feeling enthusiastic about one project, I'll just work on the other, and eventually cycle back around.

I mean, I certainly do go days without writing, but it's generally only one or two, and I'm not really paying attention to it. But even if I'm not physically writing, I'm usually thinking about a scene or where I'm headed or this or that. And if I do go awhile without writing (last Christmas season, I don't think I did anything for almost a month), I just let it go. Times in the past when I haven't been writing, if I beat myself up over it, it just makes it worse.
there's coffee in that nebula: x-files scully patienceun_crayon_rouge on October 2nd, 2015 05:34 am (UTC)
All excellent advice, thank you! The writing at work is pretty much out for me, since I now am the boss of the library, so somehow active work is expected of me all the time I'm there. Go figure. But coffee + writing session on weekends, I used to love that. I'll try to make that a regular weekend thing. Of course, my regular café that I've been going to for twenty years just closed... so tragic, but this is Madrid. There *has* to be another café for me.

And the not beating oneself up for not writing is very important too. I hope it will be easier for me when writing daily has actually become a habit for me.
Shannon: xf beyond the seakungfuwaynewho on October 2nd, 2015 02:21 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I tend to think more of it as, "dang, I didn't get a chance to write today, I love writing!" and not, "I didn't write today, I suck." It's just the slightest shift in perspective. I think getting to where you're looking forward to writing - and everything else that entails, like new notebooks and pretty ink and a hot drink - instead of feeling obligated to write is what makes all the difference.

Because at the end of the day, it should be fun. Right? I don't write for a living, so I don't have to put that kind of pressure on myself. It's something I do because I enjoy it, and sure, I want to write things that are good, and I want to improve, but if I'm not having a fun time then there's no point. So that overall is sort of how I approach it.
there's coffee in that nebula: bsg roslin/adamaun_crayon_rouge on October 3rd, 2015 06:16 am (UTC)
Yes, I think part of the problem for me is that I tend to put pressure on myself even when I don't have to. Wordcounts and deadlines and whatnot. I'm beginning to think it's because I was taught not to trust myself, but that's a whole other story.

Although I still have trouble with the "fun" aspect. For me, it's a bit like meditation: I started doing it because I thought it would be good for me. At first I couldn't stick with it, because it's not exactly "fun", but now I've built a habit and I miss it when I can't do it. I still don't think of it as "fun" though.
Shannonkungfuwaynewho on October 5th, 2015 06:44 pm (UTC)
Yeah, that's a tricky one. I feel like if it's something you're doing for free, then you have to enjoy it on some level. If it's not fun at all, then I'm not sure what you gain from "making" yourself doing it. You know? Do you normally work on novels, or on short stories, or what? Maybe if you threw everything aside for a while and wrote in a different format/genre, or even just did a week of a different flash fiction each day, if that might shake the cobwebs off? Just spit-balling here.
there's coffee in that nebula: TOS kirk cutieun_crayon_rouge on October 5th, 2015 06:54 pm (UTC)
Oh, no, it's not like I don't enjoy it at all. I do get a deep satisfaction from it. When I get a scene right, a line of dialogue, a description that just hits the spot. The feeling of creating something. I'm rather good at it, and I know it, and I want to get even better. I love all of that. It's just not - fun. Fun is watching movies or reading Stephen King novels. Writing is more like meditation or reading Samuel Johnson: it's something I need, something I want, something that's part of me - and yet I have to push myself to do it.

If that makes any sense at all.
Shannon: tng merry menkungfuwaynewho on October 5th, 2015 06:59 pm (UTC)
It makes sense! I certainly have times like that when I'm struggling with a difficult scene or can't quite work out a transition. I guess fun maybe isn't the right word; but it certainly shouldn't be torment, you know?

When I get a scene right, a line of dialogue, a description that just hits the spot. The feeling of creating something.

Yessssss, the best.
there's coffee in that nebula: b5 mira and goranun_crayon_rouge on October 5th, 2015 07:47 pm (UTC)
but it certainly shouldn't be torment, you know

Exactly. Which is why I've decided to schedule time every day for writing (I have to schedule everything, it's a thing), but I've also decided that if it's not working I won't force myself.
vjs2259: frozen_elsaskysnowflakevjs2259 on October 1st, 2015 10:29 pm (UTC)
I haven't been writing at all, and I miss it. Life has turned upside down again but it hasn't led to a burst of creativity this time. :(
Shannonkungfuwaynewho on October 2nd, 2015 02:18 pm (UTC)
:( So are you not writing because you don't have time, or because you don't have ideas?
vjs2259: ghibli_heart_all invjs2259 on October 2nd, 2015 05:10 pm (UTC)
More I have no heart for it.
Shannonkungfuwaynewho on October 2nd, 2015 05:16 pm (UTC)
Aw, yeah. That's tough for sure. I'm not one of those people that's like, you can never stop! You have to get back on the horse! But I will say that I hope someday that changes - not for writing's sake, but for everything else.