This week, more on my new timesheets, because that is data and I love messing with data. I am really liking the effect the timesheet is having. It pushes me to do more work when I need to, but is also a way for me to sit down and say: “Okay, I’ve worked on my novel for two hours today, so no I don’t need to work on it more now.”
The other effect is that it lets me, definitively, see how long it takes me to do certain tasks. I find when writing new stuff, I tend to work better in half hour increments. When smoothing or revising, I can more easily work for up to an hour (or more).
It also lets me see what other things I did over the course of a week that I might forget I had done, like these past two weeks I went though my blog and re-jiggered the categories and tags. I now have:
Journal: Mostly talking about the writing I’ve been doing, but some of what’s going on in my life in general.
Blog posts: Which are posts that are meant to be more informational or topic focused than ‘what I’ve been doing’.
Reviews: Because I realized I really like doing reviews and talking about why I did or didn’t like particular media (tv shows, movies, books, and video games).
World of Warcraft: For all my old world of warcraft kill posts that I just can’t bring myself to delete.
It took some time, but it now means things are much neater, and that makes my heart happy.
Also, two great things happened this past week. First was that I reached the point in Huntsman where I *usually* bang my head against it, think nothing can be done, and become sad for several days. But this time I remembered my process after only one day, and went back to the beginning to smooth for a while. (I am also taking notes on the things I still need to do.) I am proud that I was actually able to look at my resistance and realize what it meant. It’s all part of getting comfortable with my process.
The second was that I got depressed (okay the depressed part wasn’t great) but I *realized* that I was depressed and gave myself the day off instead of beating myself up over the fact that I didn’t feel like working on the Huntsman. Instead I read more in my mushroom book (research for a potential story) and spent almost three hours writing the first drafts and taking pictures for the gryffin posts I have coming up. And those were both productive and fun.
So it was two wins in the “self-awareness” category and I am celebrating that fact. I didn’t try to force myself to feel the way I thought I should, I just listened to what I needed and worked from there and ended up more productive for it.
Added Feb 07: I totally forgot to make myself a writing goal. On Jan 21 my goal was to finish removing a character from the Huntsman and smooth to the end. Since then I got about halfway in, then went back to the beginning for another smoothing pass during which time I started taking notes on what I don’t like, or that needs to be fixed in each scene until I now reached the place where the book basically breaks down completely.
Plan for the next two weeks is now this: Finish off taking notes on the whole story (Wed), move the scenes around to try and make the story more whole (Thurs), write the new scenes I put in my notes as needing to write. (Sat/Sun).
Then the next week is another, heavy duty, smoothing pass. I’ll reevaluate where I am over the weekend and include my new plan in the next journal entry.