Friday, March 20, 2015

5 Ways to Get a Lot of Writing Done.

If you are one of my close writing friends, there is a good chance you're laughing at me.

And you're probably saying, "Mariesa. Let's be real. You complain to me every day about not wanting to write. Do you really think you're the right one to make a post about writing a lot?"

Yes, I am a lazy person and the stress of NaNo is one of the sole reasons I ever finish anything. But, through NaNo and recent discoveries, I have found 5 simple ways to get a lot of writing done in a small amount of time. And because of a few tips and things I've started doing, I have got a lot of writing done.

And I'm here to share.

1: Set aside time 

Another that I passed over on writing advice posts, because it's so obvious. Duh! But recently, now that I've been ambitious and started writing whole novels during school year and not relying on NaNoWriMo...I've realized that I am pretty busy.

I have school, chores, more school, and I want to read a lot too. Writing was always shoved away and that is just sad.

If you love writing and want to pursue it....then you are a writer. And writers need to respect their work. It's not complicated. You don't have to say "Oh I am going to write at 8 to 9 EVERY MORNING,"

I have tried that and once I failed I forget about it and go back to laziness.

But when you wake up, plan your day in your head. If you know you have heavy school or work all day, don't stress over writing. But if you know you'll be free in the evening, don't leave it open ended. It's easy to put off school to nighttime when you know you have time.

Tell yourself you're going to finish your school at a certain time, then read for an hour or two, then work on your story. It's a simple plan but it really helps.

2: Know what you're doing

I'm not an outliner. I thought I wasn't, at least. I just poured stuff onto the paper and called it writing.

Recently, though, I have discovered that light outlines are so helpful. I have a list by my paper with the basic things I want to happen in a chapter. I've found that while writing I switch a lot around or add things.

Without that outline, I tend to get frustrated at not knowing what to do next, and then I just watch youtube videos. Mini outlines like that are so helpful. Know what you're doing in a chapter. It will help.

3: The Drabble Method

This is a method I recently discovered. And well, I wrote 5k yesterday which is more than I have written in a long time because of it.

For those of you who don't know, a drabble is both a noun and verb, meaning a 100 word or so story or piece of fluff. Usually, you drabble with friends. You pick a prompt, and you write about 100 words. And you'd be surprised at how fast the 100 words go.

Last night when I was close to tears at how behind my goal I was, I tried it. I made a list of  "prompts" that weren't really prompts, but what needed to happen. It looked like this:

S's Story
S's Story
S's Story
T talks some
C come home
Mother scene
Barn scene

I considered doing actual drabble prompts, but that was too open ended for me. I needed someone, in this case myself, to tell me exactly what to do. 100 words each. That's easy! But when you have 20 drabbles, that's 2,000 words.

Here is how I did it, and this worked best. Open a new document, and start your first Drabble. It's a lot easier to track where you are when there's nothing else on the document. When you're done, copy it into your story, then clear to separate document and continue like that.

So I sat down, knowing a 100 word long talking scene would be easy. Well that talking scene ended up being 200 and the scene where Sol tells his story ended up being 500.

I kept going. And before I knew it I had written 3k, and caught up in any way I was behind. I slept very happily.

I really love this method because if my prompt is a small moment, it almost forces me to spend a little bit more time with the point of the scene, and add more to the dialogue and emotion, which made my writing better as well.

I highly recommend this method. I will certainly be doing it for a while.

4:The Building Method

This is a method to use with friends.

During NaNo last year, the lovely Emma and Sam and I were video chatting almost every day. By the end of the month we were done with writing.

Until one of us, I don't remember who, scolded all of us and told us to go write 10 words. Yeah, we could do 10 words. So we wrote 10 words, and shared them.

Then we told each other to go write 20 words. And it kept building.

It's a bit slower, but it was so insanely helpful for getting us out of slow parts. Recently, we've using other methods.

Anyone who didn't have as much writing to do would go draw some fan art for our stories, or write some cute fluff, or find some amazing fanfic for a book. And that was our motivation.

Let me tell you, someone saying they just wrote fanfic for your own novel but you can't read it until you write 200's very motivating.

So...get some friends. Find some friends. And have at it.

5: You have to write bad writing in order to get good writing

Ah, NaNo.

Writing 50k in a month. Basically, you are going to write crap. Or, what Sam calls it: Crap-fic. basically you need a few more words and you got nothing so you write scenes where characters steal goats and eat potatoes.

I kid you not. I wrote a scene in my NaNo 2013 when a evil dwarf made my main character wash a basket of never ending potatoes.

I had a scene where my two characters get into a pun war. Another scene where people die for no reasons. I actually added a snarky character just so I could have banter that would boost my word count. Granted, now Ellery is everyone favorite character...but my point remains.

First drafts suck. People always say this and yet I see others including me tear themselves down because they think they're do good and I'm sorry but that's rubbish.

Like, really? Everyone starts somewhere. Everyone has crappy NaNoWriMos and first drafts. That's what life is. But writing is amazing and you shouldn't give it up.

You have to write bad writing in order to get good writing,

So the most important thing to remember if you want to write a lot is to remember it ain't gonna be pretty. And laughing over the crazy with friends makes it a little bit better.

And those are my 5 methods that have worked for me. I hope they help you. Keep writing!

1 comment:

  1. These are some good tips! ^ ^ Word Wars are very helpful for me, because for some reason prompts don't help me very much. I see them as a distraction lol. I totally agree with the mini outlines though. It helps to know where you're going.

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