Monday, May 9, 2011
Okay, I’m really dating myself if I tell you this was the first video game I knew, growing up. Atari Ping Pong. I wasn’t any good at it.
However, I’ve recently had success at ping-ponging WIPs. I’ve got two projects going right now – one at 16k words and the other at40k words. And somehow, working on them alternately – chapter by chapter -- has improved my productivity.
Which is a good thing, because I felt like I was spinning my wheels a little this winter. With a full time teaching job, my writing time is limited, and sometimes I forced it, so as not to waste a single minute. And forcing your writing is never a good idea.
I’m a lot more successful if I don’t start writing until I have a chapter all worked out in my mind. But now, with two stories going simultaneously, I can put a chapter for one of them down on paper, while planning out the next chapter of the other story in my head.
On a good week, I’ve been able to write one chapter of each. This is not going to be one of those weeks, though. (Thanks a lot, stomach flu. That was a helluva Mother’s Day gift.)
On the other hand, when I make revisions on a completed manuscript, I turn myself completely over to that story. Nothing gets in the way – no other WIPs, no television, no books. Total immersion.
How about you? Do you ping pong? Or do you totally commit yourself to one project at a time?