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Sunday, July 5, 2009

Weekly Writing Recap

Major Revision/Rewrite of Inspirational Historical #3
Status: 49,000 words out of 100,000

Words added/rewritten this week: 0


Zero words added?

Yes, it's true.

After two weeks in which I made significant progress, it's hard to admit that I added not one word to my story this week.

However, rather than focus on what I didn't do, I'm choosing to focus on what I accomplished.

I gave a speech at Toastmasters. Since I put a great deal of time into writing and rehearsing each of my speeches, I have less time for working on my story the weeks I'm scheduled to deliver a speech.

The experience I gained and feedback I received served me well. My speech was from the storytelling manual. My evaluator noted several strengths, and yet he mentioned some areas for improvement. He suggested I clarify my theme and add more description. Sound familiar? Yes, those same elements are important to my stories.

Working every element I need into a 100K story can be challenging. Trying to fit them into a 6-8 minute speech, however, is more so. This served as a great lesson in writing tight, so my time was well spent.

I took some time out for my family too. Our daughter starts college in mid-September. She's working two part-time jobs this summer, so she's not around much. When she is, we're doing things as a family. I'll have plenty of time for writing once the nest is empty. While she's still here, being with her is a priority.

My third major use of time this week was to work on an edit of a full manuscript for a writer friend. I was honored to be asked and had wanted to read this particular story, so even though this is a major time commitment, I set aside my own writing to help another. And I'm happy with that decision. I've been blessed by so many generous writers that I welcome opportunities to give back.

So, yes. My word count was zero this week. By choice.

Am I eager to return to my story? Definitely. But I have no regrets about how I spent my week.

• • • • •

Do you have weeks when other things take priority over your writing?
How do you feel when that happens?

When you've had to be away from your story and your characters,
do you find yourself eager to spend time with them again?


Laura Frantz said...

Bless you, Keli, for prioritizing so well! It's something I struggle with on a regular basis. I think your Toastmasters involvement is so interesting. Maybe a future speaking career once your book is published? I'm finding the Lord never wastes any experience we have!

Jessica said...

Hahaa! LOL I was prepared compare myself to your progress but now you've made me feel better about my own lack. Heeeheee.
Yes, I have times where writing goes to the backburner. Family is def. more important, and sometimes so are chores. LOL

Anne Barton said...

Keli, it sounds like you had a full, productive week. I feel like taking an occasional break from writing can be a good thing. Even when we're not writing we're still thinking about our stories and working things out in our minds. Like you did with your TM speech. :)

It's so nice of you to do edits for a friend. I know how valuable your input is!

Hope you have another great week ahead.

Jill Kemerer said...

The words aren't the only factor in the journey. Toastmasters and critiquing will help your writing, so they definitely count as forward progress!

And yes, I have weeks like that too!

Keli Gwyn said...

Laura, Toastmasters is great. I'm learning so much and definitely plan to use my training as I expand my writing to include speaking engagements.

Jessica, if you wrote one word last week, you did better than I did. Glad I helped you feel better. :)

Ann, I learn so much when I edit another writer's manuscript. When I return to my own, I see it with fresh eyes. I catch weaknesses and find places where I can add depth.

Jill, it's nice to know I'm not alone. I think we all have weeks where life intervenes. As I saw last week, though, good can come from time spent on related tasks.