1. Shrubs
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    Shrubs Member

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    Writing multiple stories at one time

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Shrubs, Nov 26, 2014.

    Since I've started the short story I'm currently working on I've had a couple ideas that are pretty cool and I'd like to do something with them but they wouldn't fit in with the subject matter of my current story. I'd like to use the ideas to create other stories but I don't want to drop the one I'm currently working on. I'm wondering what actual writers tend to do in situations like this. Do you put the ideas aside to work on them at a later date? Or do you work on multiple projects at once? I'm sure this differs from person to person but I find myself curious about what you all do.
     
  2. mad_hatter
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    mad_hatter Active Member

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    I have a number of ideas of my own right now, all of which I'd love to be chipping away at. Trouble is, doing so would probably end up being pretty confusing.

    My advice would be to finish off the first draft of your current story before moving on to the next, then come back to it at a later date, with fresh eyes.
     
  3. Nilfiry
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    Nilfiry Contributing Member

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    I write a bunch of things simultaneously all the time. It is not detrimental to my writing at all. It just depends on how organized you are in your head. Since some of my writings are related, it actually helps to reinforce the consistency.
     
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  4. A.J. Pruitt
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    A.J. Pruitt Member

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    This is a common scenario (not a fault nor a problem) with most writers. My advice would be to write the outline of your story idea then save it to a file to be resurrected at a later date. From time to time you can add short excerpts of the story line; however, try your best to finish your original story first: even if it a first draft.
     
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  5. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    I read an article once, a little while ago. I can't remember who wrote it, but I feel they were a successful, published author. Anyway. The author said they don't feel successful unless they are constantly creating new story ideas. So while they are writing one, they are thinking up another one. They said they just switch to whichever one they feel the most drawn to at the moment, and it keeps them from feeling stuck, because they are constantly moving.

    This was something I've always done, and since reading the article, I've made it a point to continue doing it. The logic made sense to me, and it's been working out so far! :p
     
  6. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    I type up and save rough ideas as they occur, but I try to only be writing a first draft of a single story at a time.

    I'll have several stories at once in the works, though.

    Like, right now I'm working on a first draft of one novel, a second draft of another, doing my own edits on a third, and finishing up editor-edits on a fourth! And then of course there's writing blurbs and filling out cover request forms and doing various promo stuff... lots of stuff other than just writing the one book.

    So I just 'write' one book at at time, but I work on lots at the same time.
     
  7. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    I work on multiple stories at once. That's just the approach that works best for me. Regardless of your approach, the most important thing is to actually finish your stories and get them out there. If working on multiple stories is just your way of putting off finishing what you started, you may need to rethink your approach (I speak from experience here).
     
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  8. Gawler
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    Gawler Contributing Member

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    I have 7 I am working on right now ranging from 13k to 106k in length. I work on which ever one I am most inspired to do. Fortunately I am very organized and it does not present a problem.
     
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  9. jaebird
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    jaebird Active Member

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    I usually only concentrate on one story at a time, only jotting down random ideas for others if they come. Probably because I get so engrossed in the story that I don't really want to work on anything else. But I always have several projects floating around, and once I get tired with or stuck on one, I can always switch to another. When I was just starting to get serious about my writing, I did this a bit too often and wound up finishing nothing. Nowadays I'm spending more time on each individual project before I switch, but I always have something else brewing.
     
  10. Mr Orange
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    Mr Orange Member

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    I write multiple works simultaneously. That way I can easily transplant lines from 1 piece where they cause a jarring, and into another piece where they might give it go. I have a piece of paper handy whenever I write so I can mix lines together like paint on an artist's palate.

    Picasso my arse.
     
  11. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think you mean a chef's palate. An artist would probably use a palette.
     
  12. Mr Orange
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    Mr Orange Member

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    Don't be a pedant. Mind masturbation is fun, but it brings you back to yourself in the end.
     
  13. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    I like to write a few pages or paragraphs on the new idea sort of to get the feel for it. And that way when I come back to it I'll know what tone I was going for. Then I write a brief plot out or synopsis. Sometimes though I work on several stories at once. I also always carry a notebook where ever I go as ideas, descriptions lines for the story I'm working on can pop up anywhere at anytime.
     
  14. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yeah, caring about words on a writers site? How shallow and meaningless!
     
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  15. Shrubs
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    Shrubs Member

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    Really happy with the responses so far I think I'm going to work on a couple projects at once and move forward on each as inspiration strikes. Pretty easy decision now that I'm stuck on the story I was writing :( I might make a post in the progression part of the forum for help later if I need it.
     
  16. Wild Knight
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    Wild Knight Active Member

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    That tactic of multiple stories works wonders for me. Which makes me wonder why I don't do it more often...:confused:
     
  17. Mike Kobernus
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    Mike Kobernus Contributing Member

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    A.J. has it right, I feel. This is exactly what I do. During the course of NaNoWriMo, I outlined two new novel ideas. In one case, it is a 1500 word synopsis, in the other it is a 10K scene by scene breakdown of the entire story.

    When I am done with the first draft of the WIP, I will switch to one of these new ideas and finish that next. THEN go back to my NaNo novel….
     
  18. mg357
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    mg357 Active Member

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    I have written multiple stories at the same time but after a while it gets tiring very tiring.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2014
  19. Commandante Lemming
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    Commandante Lemming Contributing Member Contributor

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    Right now I'm working on two - I switch when I get stuck on one - One story "marinates" while the other one "cooks" and it works well. By the time I've reached a sticking point writing one, I've usually figured out how to fix whatever got me stuck on the last one.

    I wouldn't start more than two - then you just start things over and over and don't finish.
     

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