September 4, 2013

Fear of the Blank Page: #IWSG & #ROW80

It's the first Wednesday of the month and time for my Insecure Writer's Support Group post. But not only is it the first Wednesday of the month, it is the second anniversary of this amazing group. *throws confetti*

A little birdie tells me that the awesome creator of #IWSG, Alex J. Cavanaugh, has something up his sleeve to take this group to the next level. So if you need support and some new writer buddies, please join us!

For me, I appreciate the opportunity to share my insecurities on the #IWSG therapy couch and to read how others are doing. Every month I'm inspired in some way to keep on keeping on.

So let me get comfortable on the couch. Okay, here goes...

I've decided that nothing stunts my writing more than pulling out my laptop and staring at the blank page.

Why is it so hard to get out of the gate?

Once I write the first few pages, the words start flowing like water from a busted dam. If I can re-read a little bit of the story, the rest of it flows.

It's the curse of a pantser. If I try to plot, I end up with a lot of question marks on a page and scribbles and arrows and crossed-out ideas. But if I can just get those first ten pages secured, I'm home free.

I've done most of the research for Chasing Memories Book 2 and jotted down storyline ideas. But they come to me at the worst times, always have. Because of this I keep a notebook and pen in my purse and car at all times. This past Sunday, inspiration hit while my family and I took a train into San Francisco. Thirty minutes later, I had pages of notes, scribbles, question marks, crossed out... but I was excited.

So today I sat at the laptop... and froze.

I can't stand to waste time, so after 15 minutes of nothing I moved on to more research and other pressing to dos (editing projects, guest posts, interviews).

So, my dear writer friends, some advice please... how do I jumpstart writing this book?

Oh, one more annoying fact about my process: I prefer to write linearly. So I get really hung up on the beginning. In the dictionary a la Tia, pressure = beginnings and endings.


A Round of Words in 80 Days (ROW80)* Update

My only goal for the next two weeks is to initiate and stick to a writing schedule. Today, my schedule was off, but I did set aside writing time. Unfortunately, I sat and looked at a blank page until I couldn't stand it any longer. I did get some research done and several pages of editing on two different novels. But I want a different kind of progress. *sigh*

Also, I'm very excited to be part of the Indie-Credible event going on all-month long. In addition to highlighting some great indie authors, there's an amazing giveaway: an eReader of the winner's choice with the remainder on a gift card. Find out more here.

The Chasing Memories blog tour wraps up this week, and I will share what I learned from a month of reviews, interviews, and guest posts next week.

*another amazing group of writers for those of you looking for support, encouragement, and camaraderie.


Tina said...

I'm a total pantser, too, so I get stuck a LOT. One advantage I have though is that about 1/3 of my novel is written in flashbacks, so if I'm stuck in the present, I write a scene from the past, and vice versa. The problem is going to come when I have to put the sucker in the right order...but I'll think about that tomorrow. Not sure if that will help you at all, but it's what I do.
Nice to meet you!
Tina @ Life is Good

krystal jane said...

I outline as I go, 1 to 3 chapters at a time. It's really short, about 3 sentences a chapter. I always know where I'm going, but I don't get overwhelmed. It's been working well for me. I can't outline because it changes to much and slows me down every time something changes and I can't completely pants because I don't like not having a plan at all because that also slows me down.

I can't wait to hear about the blog tour. :)

Jo Michaels said...

Suggestion: Go find yourself a writing prompt (totally unrelated to your book) and just start writing. Since you'll never publish what you write in these mini-sessions anyway, don't worry about punctuation or grammar. Just talk. I guarantee you'll be bursting at the seams in just a few minutes. Go fast and furious. :) Above all, WRITE ON!

Tia Bach said...

What would I do without you guys and your amazing advice! Thank you. Thank you.