1. eliza490
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    eliza490 Member

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    Writing on a Timetable

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by eliza490, Nov 13, 2009.

    I don't really have a schedule for writing. I write when I feel like it, when ideas are flowing and I actually have something to say. I've found that when I try to write under a certain schedule it's hard to stick with it. I've recently queried a publisher on one of my books. I'm just not sure how well I'll be able to handle it if a publisher accepts my work, but wants me to rewrite a chapter or two before moving forward. I'm better at writing when I take my time, so I guess I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions about writing well when you're on a timetable and have to meet a deadline soon. Is it just a question of mind over matter, or is there something I could do to keep the ideas flowing while meeting a deadline without feeling too rushed?

    ~Eliza
     
  2. Fox Favinger
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    Fox Favinger Contributing Member

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    Sometimes I feel the sense of urgency can make me more productive. I'll admit I don't always fire up my computer when I have ideas because I simply don't feel like writing, but if I have to get something done I'll sit in front of the PC and let the ideas come and write them as they do.

    The only deadlines I've worked with where I needed quality work (school never gets quality lol) was when my band and I had to finish writing and recording several songs for a demo. We worked our asses off and get the thing done in record time thanks to the effort. Sometimes the anxiety can spark something in my mind, and when something needs to get done I'll go with that spark!
     
  3. architectus
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    architectus Banned

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    Force yourself to sit at the PC and allow no distractions. Think of one sentence at a time. If nothing comes then just sit there and day dream about the scene. If you think of part of it, start typing. Eventually the juices will start flowing, if not that day, then the next, or the next.
     
  4. bluebell80
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    bluebell80 Contributing Member

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    This is why I always thought it better to have a either complete novel, or nearly complete novel done before sending stuff to publishers/agents. For the most part, good, reliable publishers won't take anything from unagented writers. You might want to be careful submitting stuff to publishers before you even have an agent who is confident in the sellability of your story.

    As far as working under deadlines...it can do one of two things for me, either force me to work at breakneck speed and have good results, or forces me into a blank stare at the computer with no flow of ideas what-so-ever. I've had both happen. Deadlines for me are like a crap shoot, never know what result I'm going to get.
     
  5. eliza490
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    eliza490 Member

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    Thanks for the comments guys, but bluebell80, your's were a little confusing. First of all I never said it wasn't finished. I was talking about being given a deadline for revisions or rewriting certain parts. Also, there are plenty of publishers out there who have no problem working with unagented writers. Open up the latest edition of Writer's Market. Some publishers even prefer to work with the writer instead of going through an agent, so I think agent's are good but there not entirely necessary as you're suggesting. I completely agree, though, with the second part of your response. It can pretty much go either way for me.
    ~Eliza
     
  6. hoodwinked
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    hoodwinked Member

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    You can do like one author I read about who would give his clothes to his servant (or something) and the servant wasn't to give him his clothes back until he was able to swap with completed work.

    You can buy handcuffs that only unlock after a certain period of time, and then foot-cuff yourself to the desk. You'd have a set amount of time where all you could do was write.

    Or, you can go to some restaurant with the most delicious food, and tell the waiters they aren't allowed to serve you until you've complete your work.

    There are many, many things you could do to meet the deadline. ;)

    Good luck!
     
  7. bluebell80
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    bluebell80 Contributing Member

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    I'm sorry eliza, somehow I got from your post that you weren't finished. It was kind of late, had a few beers, I must have misread it. Now I see you were just talking about re-writes and revisions. They usually give you a deadline to get things into them. Working under deadlines can kill creativity, but since you are just revising and editing, it shouldn't be too awful difficult. It's not like writing an entire book under deadline, which if they sign you on for a second book option may happen.

    Sometimes externally enforced deadlines can motivate productivity, or it can create a full on bout of writers block. It really depends on how you handle stress and manage your time. But, like anything in life, if you really want it, you'll buckle down and get the job done. It might be painful, stressful, and nerve racking, but you'll finish on time, even if you spend 48 hours before the end of your deadline putting the finish touching on it, while fueled by large amounts of caffeine. lol
     
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  8. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    I think you should read poetry. I know that is weird sounding. But I always look at poetry as a good thing like a health bar before lifting weights. Usually the poems is a quick way of firing up ideas. Poems are miniature novels in the making. Or you could always listen to music.
    Sometimes losing distractions isn't a good thing. Usually life itself allows a good pop inside your head.
    You just kind of have to know where to find it. Write in the park, watch and observe. Listen to music, close your eyes and try to hear the story, etc.
     
  9. hoodwinked
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    hoodwinked Member

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    My distractions usually include turning on the TV or playing some Mensa Mind puzzle or sudoku. I mean, really, how could you not come up with the best epic of our time while doing sudoku?
     
  10. eliza490
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    eliza490 Member

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    Thanks for all the comments guys!! They're very helpful. You had some pretty good ideas, hoodwinked!
    ~Eliza
     

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