Project 2012: First check-in

So have you started yet?  Have you pulled out the old manuscript, blown off the dust and opened the first page?  Have you developed your spreadsheet and started to read Chapter 1?  (If you want more information in your spreadsheet, have a look at the one developed by Kerryn.)

Or have you looked at this daunting task and wandered off to re-organise the bathroom cupboard contents by colour?

Or maybe you are caught up in plotting your new novel?  How’s that going?

This is a check-in post!  If you are participating, write a comment on your progress. This is also an opportunity to ask for help from myself and the other writers who are participating, or talk about some aspect of revision or writing that you would like more information on.

Talk about your fears and aspirations.  Get excited!  And if you haven’t already, pull out those manuscripts and get started.


23 thoughts on “Project 2012: First check-in

  1. I started reading but then also starting making word corrections. I just couldn’t help myself. I think I need to work off a printed copy only.

    Kerryn’s spreadsheet scared me. I lifted my hands in the air and ran away from my computer screaming in fright. :) Whew…a few drinks and now I’m better.

    I think I need something a little simpler, that one just has too many columns and my creative brain felt a little overwhelmed. I have to think on two different levels, organized or creative–when the two collide everything goes wrong. So maybe five or six columns only.

    • The problem with making word corrections is that it gets you into the mode of editing, rather than revision. Think big!

      I have a much simpler spreadsheet, as I only jot down the basics. All you need is some way to track what needs changing.

  2. So far I’ve been keeping journal entries every day about the editing process. I was about 16k words in and hit a major speedbump when I failed to land a promotion at work. It kind of depressed me and now my progress has gone into a two day recession. I’m hoping to break that today.

  3. Hey Merrilee, i just found your blog. (sorry for my bad english, by the way). I don’t think I can follow you in that 2012 project, because I wrote a big one in 2011, but I will read your articles about writing pleasure..
    A fun fact, I have a blog about writing too, and my wordpress template is the same as yours!
    And good work to all of you!!!

  4. I’ve chipped away at Stellar Gift of Death‘s first draft–and I do mean chipped–while on a printing orgy because I had way less of Forget the Sun printed out than I thought. I also got distracted by base a major location on a location in the real world search. So once I got the printouts in chronological order and refused to let the state of my writing circa 1999 derail the method of attack, I read through a prologue scene and one whole narrative day’s worth yesterday.

    Given the nature of the hypertext novel, my narrative text is already chopped into scenes. So I’m going to switch to Kerryn’s version of the spreadsheet and see if it notates better for me.

  5. I’ve started.

    I made sure that I had blocked off a considerable allotment of time, so I could follow the ‘read all the way through and get a sense of the story’ instruction, which handily also let me procrastinate for a few more days where I knew I wouldn’t have that kind of time. Unfortunately, after spending two hours to get through the first 4% of my book, I don’t think I’m going to be able to get through it all in a sitting this time. The good thing is by using a read only document, I’ve stopped myself from making any changes, which means two hours got me four times as far as it would have. The other good thing is that I’ve never used a ‘Spreedsheet of power’ before, but I can see why it’s a good idea, and I’m liking it so far. The last really good thing is that I sucked it up and started, which I was afraid to do. The book isn’t as bad as I’m afraid it was, and since the first step is just reading, and noting, I can do that. I don’t have to feel overwhelmed, so although it’s going to take a bit given the sheer size of the novel, I’m pretty sure I can do it. At least this part anyways.

    So I’d call that a qualified success of a first step.

    Also, thank you for posting a check in this week rather than the next step. That most likely would have exploded my brain :)

    • Lol, Amai. I think the next step would have fried my brain too. Congratulations on starting. Sometimes it really can be the hardest part. I’m only about 3% into my novel too so plenty of reading ahead!

      • Thanks. Congrats on your 3%! I have to admit I took a little inspiration for setting up my spreadsheet from the one you posted, so thanks for that too.

  6. Not only have I got my colourful spreadsheet all set but I’ve read through the first 3 scenes! :) The first two scenes are an intro to my character and her current life and in scene three BAM the call to action comes. Ooh, I’ve just thought of another plotting structure to add to my spreadsheet.

    I also added a Timeline section to the front of my scene list with Day (Wed, Thurs, etc) and Time (AM, PM, Eve) because I know I’ve got consistency issues there. In fact, I’m not sure whether scenes 1 & 2 happen on Tuesday or Wednesday! I’m really interested to see how my spreadsheet evolves as I read through the novel. One of my goals is to try out all sorts of revision techniques and that’s starting with mapping my story into all sorts of plot structures.

    My writing has be relegated to the weekends while I focus on healthy eating and movement during the week but I’m hoping the excitement I have for the revision at the moment will draw me back to my story through the evenings this week. I’d really like to finish the read through this month.

    • I found timelining things to be really helpful as well. I’m doing an animation so kind of really have to think about time of day and location and other silly things like that ;) Also helped me to fix up some consistency issues which were actually quite glaring but that I’d somehow managed to gloss over.

      Good luck with your project :D

  7. I’m about a fifth of the way through reading Excalibur. I started on Day 1 and made slow progress right up until last night when I got stuck into it and got a nice chunk read :) I’m hoping to be able to do the same thing today!

    As I think I said in a comment for an earlier post, I’m not going to be writing a rough draft to a new story. I don’t like editing at the best of times and I KNOW that if I write a rough draft, editing will come to a complete standstill. I hope that’s okay.

  8. I’ve started reading my first draft of TCM! And am having a million thoughts about it. A friend is currently in the process of writing up more commentary on it, but he’s given me HEAPS to think about – I’m so excited to get stuck into revising this baby!! Though, there are many decisions I need to make, and a lot of work ahead of me. I think it’s going to be well worth it.

    And, this week, also getting back into the habit of daily writing on Sun-Touched. It’s coming slowly, and I’m not at the ‘daily’ point yet, but now that Hubby is back at work, that might be a little easier.

    A little daunted by all thought of balancing two exciting, delicious projects. But I’ll learn how to do that as I go, and I guess at least there will always be something to turn to when I get stuck on one, or the other!

  9. I feel like I’m cheating because I’m not re-looking at book #1. *guilty giggle* BUT! I have finished my first chapter of #2 – very close to the 2000 word target. :)Doing some have-to writing for another project now, then hoping to carry on with my want-to writing, AKA book #2.

    How many writers are participating Merillee? I’d like to follow their progress too.

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