Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Plans and a late-breaking Insecure Writer message!

I promised you that this would be a new day on Jan Morrison, This Crazy Writing Life.  I want to share with you some ideas for my next steps - make a new calendar of deadlines. Or should I call them lifelines? I want to decide what days I'm going to post on this blog and whether I'm going to have memes or topics for those days.
I will post on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays - except for during April in which I will blog every day as part of the A-Z Challenge!  Tuesdays will be my day to focus on my own writing process, on Thursdays I will go back to my Tips from the Tops (where I glean my writing sources for good writing tips) and Saturdays will be on the external life of a writer - anything goes!

So, without further ado, here is my first Tuesday post of the new regime:

Getting my manuscript done and dusted - off to the contest with its package of four page synopsis and a small essay on why I was entering the particular award competition happened on March 1st. Since then I've done nothing on True or any other wip. Here are my thoughts about next plans:

Project: True
  • I will finish my one-page synopsis of True - by March 11
  • I will write four query letters - each geared to the agents I've researched - by March 14th
  • I will send off four packages to four agents - My March 18
  • I will send one to two packages a month until I hear back from someone. These other packages will be to either agents in the States or to Canadian publishers.
Project The Rock Walker
  • I will begin my revision process with TRW by writing a Hero's Journey Synopsis - by April 1st.
  • Using the above as my template I will begin a big picture revision of TRW - I will continue to revise going through all the steps - structure, clarity, setting, characters, dialogue, themes, rhythm, language - until I have something to send to the person who edits for me - finish by June 1st
  • When I get it back I will incorporate changes
  • I will create query packages for publishers that I've researched - synopsis, bio, letter, etc...because this is a mystery I will probably avoid trying for an agent. - by July 1st
There - this seems good. I need to do this quite often, so I can see where I really am and not fantasize! Ultimately True is finished - I feel it down to my bones - oh, I know there will be further edits but it is done to the best of my current ability. I feel my mind going towards TRW and getting excited - I have learned one or two things over the last effort - I like revising - I do not like synopsis writing but I can see how wonderful a tool it is - even if done late - in order to help the revision process.

How do you keep yourself on track - the writing track that is?

Oh Oh - I forgot that this was Insecure Writers Support Group day. ARGGGH! First one I've missed. I offer this for any who wander by looking for it - the best way to treat insecurity (for me) is to write through it. My image is that of holding a candle and walking a long and sometimes treacherous, sometimes boring, sometimes beautiful path. I have to keep the candle lit and move forward. I will meet inner and outer demons on the path - those that want to smother my candle with too much attention - those that want to blow the flame out because of insecurity or jealousy - those who will walk with me for a ways and encourage my journey. I must not lose my intention. I must not listen to the naysayers - those who nay say out of either fear or envy. I must not listen to those who spew hyperbole either - too much of that and I forget what I am doing. When the going gets tough I remember my dad and recall that in those instances 'the tough get going'. When the landscape is boring and seems endless (the middle of the wip?) I remember to pay attention with greater diligence - that nothing is boring when I am awake. I know I will get to the end of this path and I treasure the travel as much if not more than the destination. Much love to you all wherever you are on your path - protect your flame with all your heart!


Angela Felsted said...

Yeah, I'm not a fan of writing the synopsis either, but I agree it's necessary.

Your plan looks good to me.

KatieO said...

It's good to have a plan ;-)

I've been putting off things all winter long... hoping the AtoZ will get me back into blogging mode, and back into good writing habits!

Margot Kinberg said...

Jan - I love it that you've got an overall organization for what you're going to do. That's such a powerful tool to help focus your mind. I think one advantage of having a plan is that it breaks down the writing task into manageable "bites" so it's not so overwhelming.

Hart Johnson said...

Very good plan. I need to sit down and do a more detailed one here, too. I have big things I am meant to be doing, but I keep going a lot slower than I should. i think if I break the deadlines smaller, then maybe I can get more done because I won't keep farting away the days.

Liza said...

Not only is it good to plan, but to share your plan. It makes you accountable.

Suze said...

'Ultimately True is finished - I feel it down to my bones'

Congratulations -- your bones must be feeling really good.

Love the design of your header. Clean and professional.

DeniseCovey_L_Aussie said...

Why is writing a synopsis harder than writing the novel? Seems like it sometimes. You seem pretty done and dusted...


Writer Pat Newcombe said...

Always good to have goals to go for... As long as they are achievable. Good luck with the synopsis!

Words A Day said...

I feel like writing your last line on a card for my notebook -
wherever you are on your path - protect your flame with all your heart...its wonderful!

Best of luck with your strategy and goals, you are one organised lady,an inspiration:)

Ella said...

Beautiful, encouraging post! I love protect your flame with all of your heart~ Great post!

Gina said...

I think having a clear plan and deadlines is critical to move forward and achieve all you want to achieve. So good lucy with that! I'll also be participating on the A to Z Challenge --so excited!-- and I guess I'll get to meet you a lot better during those days.

See ya, then!
From Diary of a Writer in Progress