Archive for the ‘WordWatchers’ Tag
December 1, people—here we are! We made it out of the NaNo trenches of November, and I’m declaring December EdYoFOffMo (Edit Your Face Off Month).
FYI: EdYoFOffMo is pronounced ed-yo-FOFF-mo, in case you care.
Over at the Write-Brained Network, I’ve created a Subgroup specifically for this, so interested parties can track their progress. If you’d like to get in on this action, join the WB (and then the EdYoFOffMo—I just can’t get enough of it!—subgroup) STAT.
HOW IT WORKS
Basically, it will work like WordWatchers—The gist of WW: set a weekly word goal and WRITE!—only, since we all edit differently, all our goals will be different.
At the beginning of each week (we’ll typically go Monday-Sunday; however, this will be a shorty week, since Dec. 1 lands on a Wednesday), participants will set a goal for what they want to get done, editing wise, that week. For example, it could be a certain amount of edited pages, a run-through for smoothing out transitions or beefing up setting/atmosphere, taking a machete to adverbs or passive verbs, etc. Whatever you want; whatever fits with your life, but is still challenging.
Bottom line: Let’s not lose the momentum we built during such a successful November.*
*If you don’t have a finished draft of something, then do WordWatchers and try to get it done! You can jump into EdYoFOffMo at any time. It’s just for fun—and to be accountable—and to keep us sane as we edit.
Also: Don’t be afraid to join the WB and participate in these contests. Believe me—you’re not going to find a more supportive group out there. Seeing others’ progress really is inspiring. It provides a major push to get your shizz done as well.
So, if you’re interested in participating in EdYoFOffMo, go to Subgroups (in the top tab of the WB’s main page) and join the EdYoFOffMo group.
I’ll see you over there!
And now . . . totally off topic: Hair-Related Questions.
Well, actually, it’s not completely off topic, because it involves cutting—just words and not hair!
So, pretty much all my life, I had long hair.
About three years ago, it started getting shorter:
And then I decided to go Holmes:
And it’s been pretty much like this ever since:
However, I’ve been seeing some cute pixie haircuts out there lately, and it’s making me wonder . . . should I do it?
I wouldn’t want the Holmes pixie. There’s something too 1967 about it:
But this is closer:
Something soft. Perhaps the Mandy Moore (LOVE HER):
So, um, what do you think? Besides “these are all exactly the same, Ricki”?
My one fear about it is that I’ll hate it, it will take forever to grow out to my current length (which I def like—I was even thinking of growing it out just a little longer and have done that *just a tad* this fall), and it will look horrible in the interim. And I’ll look like a boy. And . . . and . . .
Anyone out there have a short short short haircut? Or *have* you had one? What was your experience in growing it out?
Furthermore, should I just be brave and do it?
I’ll probably chicken out, but I’ve been thinking about it lately. Not sure what my husband thinks, but he *does* think my ears are cute, for some reason. And he hasn’t really seen them in about three years! This would be his big chance!
Next haircut scheduled: Dec. 16.
Soooooo busy lately, and here’s why:
Basically what that means is, I’ve set a weekly goal (8,000 words) and I’m trying to discipline myself to write at least 1500 words each day I write (a lá NaNoWriMo + WW, which dictates you don’t have to write *every day* necessarily) to wrap up my work-in-progress (WIP) by the end of the month (a lá NaNoWraMo).
Whew—that was an exhausting sentence to type!!
I made—and surpassed—my goal: 8146 for Week 1. *applause*
I started at 31,457 words, and if you look at my word count meter to the right, you can see how I’m doing so far. It feels so great to be making such progress! I am so *in love* with my manuscript!!
And I really hope I stay so enamored. However, I know how these things go.
I’ve just learned so much since I wrote my first MS, and that makes me love writing this one that much more. Here’s why: Not that writing a novel is ever easy, but it’s just much *easier* to know, from the very start, you’re doing things right. Instead of trying to force something you wrote (before you knew anything about how writing a book works) to be tightly plotted—to have sound structure—to balance X, Y, and Z—it’s just so refreshing to be on the right track from the start!!
I have read people talking about this very thing, but I’m living it now—you really do “learn” on your first MS.
Anyway, I heart Sheena Easton—that’s my working title (explanation).
AMONG OTHER THINGS
I’ve also been:
- Looking into more speaking gigs
- Interviewing literary agents
- Interviewing script managers
- Moving my online writing group (yes, again—FML)
- Building a new Web site
- Planning a workshop/conference for the WB (!)
- Developing some writing courses (for me to possibly teach in H’burg!)
Things have been so crazy, I’ve actually had to schedule phone calls, just to catch up with people! (It’s actually worked really well, instead of missing people’s phone calls all the time. If I know we have a call planned, I schedule around it!)
That said, I’m about to go into my writing cave. Sheena calls.
ONE MORE THING
However, in anticipation of something *else* I just did—purchase tickets for a midnight showing of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1, next week—I leave you with something awesome:
Last week, I announced the emerging of The Write-Brained Network, my online writing organization (formerly Shenandoah Writers Online).
YOU ARE INVITED
I’d like to extend a formal invitation to anyone out there stumbling upon this blog post who is a writer and who has not yet checked us out. I’d love to meet you—virtually or otherwise.
We are doing some cool things, and I’ve love to have you be a part of them:
- We currently have four satellite chapters starting up throughout the country—soon to be six!
- Three members have also started subgroups by genre—currently, for YA (YAwesome Writers), horror writers (The Dark Ones), and literary writers (Literary Lovers)
- As well, we are in talks about putting on an IRL conference possibly as early as next year!
Like I said—cool things happening. I could not be more of a proud mama bear.
This is our third month doing WordWatchers, and while we’ve had participation every month, I’d like to up the ante a bit for September.
One winner will receive a 10-page manuscript critique from moi, and one will receive ONE of a number of SIGNED BOOKS (I finally got my box o’ plunder back from the RWA conference, and there’s a ton of great stuff available in there—details forthcoming)!
To be eligible, all you have to do is:
1) Be a member of the Write-Brained Network.
3) Log your progress on the WB group wall and/or in the September WordWatchers discussion in our WB forum.
+1 entry for setting a goal and participating (publicly)
+1 entry for every day you log your writing progress
+5 entries for every week you HIT your weekly writing goal
+3 entries for every person you invite to join the WB (who joins!) between now and the end of the month*
*You will have to let me know if you invited someone and they joined or if you’ve blogged/Tweeted about the WB—I’m not a mindreader!
At the end of the month, I’ll have you tally your entries, send them to me, and I’ll pick two winners.
“In the Blogosphere” is a series, which lists links to writing-related blogs I’ve stumbled upon throughout a given week (usually).
As Sarah Jane Freymann Literary’s Katharine Sands discussed at Southeastern Writers association last week, when pitching, it’s important to be ready. Over at Self Editing Blog, John Robert Marlow discusses jumping the gun: suicide by submission.
Likewise, Nelson Literary Agency’s Kristin Nelson describes the dangers of starting your novel in the wrong place.
You know, I sort of think this is kind of a fabulous blog post. Writer and part-time doctor Lydia Kang of The Word is My Oyster says: Stop apologizing! Chuck that qualifying language and strengthen your writing.
Thinking of doing a little freelancing? Down the Shore with Jen’s Jen A. Miller (@jerseyshorejen) explains four things you need in order to make it. A must-read for all fledgling freelancers.
Here, award-winning fiction and nonfiction author JC Hutchins of Writer Unboxed discusses crafting killer pitches by offering and analyzing examples of good ones.
I’m a little behind with my Blogosphere posts—I saved this one two months ago!!—but it’s too good not to share. Young adult fantasy author Jodi Meadows of the Query Project gave us a gift on her birthday: the query she wrote for Erin Incarnate that helped her snag fab agent Lauren MacLeod of the Strothman Agency.
Looking for a little motivation to get words written? The Michelle Wolfson repped Tawna Feske details a recent Twitter writing sensation, #1k1hr, where one must turn off her self-editor and get words on the page—1,000 of them, to be exact—in an hour.
If you’re looking for something just as satisfying but a little more flexible and a little more long-term, check out my new writing SWO program, WordWatchers. Pick a weekly word count goal, and divvy up the words written per day in a way that fits your schedule!
In honor of Eclipse coming out this week . . . if you thought the people who stand in lines for twelve hours to see the Twilight movies were wonky, you weren’t wrong—but there are wonkier folks out there. Here, Great White Snark gives us a dozen such psychopaths.
I was so impressed with the amount of participation we had in May with SheNoWriMo and I received so much positive feedback from SW(IRL) and Write-Brainiacs about the contest that I’d like to implement another, similar, writing program.
I drew my inspiration from weight-loss program WeightWatchers’s point system (in case that wasn’t obvious); however, instead of trying to reduce your mass, we’ll be bulking up—on words written, that is.
From what I gather, the WeightWatchers folks design a program—specific to each person—based on a number of factors: ideal body weight according to height, age, etc.
Participants are then given a number of “points” they are allowed to consume per day, per week, etc. (foods are assigned numeric values in the way of these points), and they can eat whatever foods they want to get to their allotted points—as long as they don’t exceed their daily/weekly goals.
With SheNoWriMo, although participants picked reasonable daily word-count goals, sometimes life got in the way. In that event, people usually caught up over the next few days.
That said, I’d like WordWatchers to be more like that. Let’s stick to weekly writing goals.
Set a weekly word-count goal. Divvy up the daily writing however you want, but make sure you get to your WordWatcher word-count total by the end of each week. Easy peasy. This will allow you to take days off without the guilt—whatever fits your schedule.
For instance, if you think your schedule will only allow you to comfortably write 3500 words/week (that’s two pages a day), fine. That’s your goal. Post it on the WordWatchers discussion in the forum on The Write-Brained Network and on your WB “wall,” and have at it.
You can write one continuous piece or many of smaller pieces or—heck—even writing prompts (you CANNOT count blog posts, e-mails, status updates, or Tweets, however).
Just set a goal for yourself, and do the writing. And keep us posted about it. Ideally, I’d like all participants to keep a daily record (on their WB walls) of their progress, like last time—it was nice when we were all cheering each other on—but since WordWatchers is a little more flexible than SheNoWriMo, perhaps it’s more feasible for you to mark your weekly progress. We can still root for the participants.
SOME WORDS ON WORD COUNT
As a general rule, 250 words = one page of writing. That should help you gauge the amount of words to which you think you can commit every week.
Remember: Don’t be too aggressive. Don’t make it impossible to reach your weekly goals, or you might get discouraged from continuing with the program. However, don’t be wimpy with your goals, either; challenge yourself.
Essentially, tailor your WordWatchers program to your lifestyle as well as your writing tastes/purposes.
ON YOUR MARKS . . .
We’ll start July 1, so think about your ideal weekly word count, and keep your eyes peeled for the WordWatchers discussion on the WB forum.
As with SheNoWriMo, my ultimate goal here is to get folks writing. Something. Consistently.
I do hope a lot of peeps will consider taking part in it.*
*You must be a member of the Write-Brained Network to participate. Not a member yet? E-mail me or click here to get started.