Tuesday, 5 May 2015

100 days of writing

A writer friend of mine shared a technique recently that she'd used to power through the first draft of a novel.

It's a chart, with a box for every day of the year. The idea is, whenever she wrote a bit more of the novel, she coloured in a box; it's a physical way of seeing just how much you've progressed. And it worked - she's finished the first draft.

*pop of champagne corks and general celebrations*

I thought I'd give it a go. Being me, I didn't commit to 365 days. I went for 100... I'm not too good at the discipline thing y'see. That being the case, I made my 100 box chart and added another set of boxes underneath; the 'I've not written anything today' boxes. (I was hoping that a visual reminder of the days I was too busy/lazy/not in the mood to write, I'd be so ashamed of myself NOT making the time or putting the effort into writing, I'd force myself to get more done.)

I didn't start off too well. In the first week, I only wrote on four days. Then I cheated, and added a square when I wrote a blog post, which made me feel better. Well - it's writing. Not on the WIP, sure, but I'm still producing words.

I'm happy to say that I've done better since. There are only two blog posts recorded so far - the rest are all WIP work. The WIP is a very, VERY rough draft - handwritten and notebooked, with lots of comments in the margins - but it's growing. Whether it's a hundred words on a day, or several A4 pages full, it's growing. And every time I block out another square, I'm one day closer to my target. The ratio currently stands at 4:1 writing to non-writing days, and it seems to be keeping me focused. (Plus there's the added advantage of not losing where I am in the story, because I'm doing a little bit pretty much every day.)

The WIP story - er, not going to tell you about it yet. It's not nearly ready enough to share. But I'll be adding a few more hundred words to it later this afternoon.

Then it'll be another block shaded, which leaves only 83 boxes after today to hit my 100 days target...

9 comments:

  1. Whoop, whoop! I'm on 3 weeks of my 100 days tomorrow. I can't tell you how satisfying it is and I more motivated than I've ever been! Might get the first draft done by the end of the year!! Good luck :)

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    1. I would've been - if I'd not missed the days early on! But yeah, it's keeping me going too. There might be something in this 'write a little bit every day' lark...

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  2. Well done!! *pom-poms waving* Keep going!

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    1. :D I've got an excellent role model... ;)

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  3. Well done Katherine. I wouldn't say you are lazy, you soon turned round another Granny Rainbow, complete and published. Better than I managed. And blogging is writing but I suppose it isn't part of your 100 days on wip, so maybe I can't support your excuse for coloring in a block. :)
    It wouldn't work for me I would just end up coloring in and doodling.

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    1. Ah, but Granny only got written when I felt like it...she could've been turned round much quicker if I'd really pushed myself, Bren.

      And you made me laugh about the colouring in - I've restricted myself to biro, otherwise I know I'd be doing all sorts of coloured patterns in the boxes... ;)

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  4. Congratulations! I’ve nominated you for the One Lovely Blog Award! Find out what it's all about here: www.literarylightbox.com/one-lovely-blog-award

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    1. Omigosh! Wowser! An award nomination?! Thank you so much, Loretta!

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