Monday, October 24, 2016

Changing Things Around

When a person writes a lot, it's important not to get bored just with the act of sitting down at the computer and pulling up the same old program to do the same old things.  This can get difficult if the story itself has slowed down or you've hit a difficult spot.  It's easy to get a feeling of dissatisfaction that has nothing to do with the writing itself.
If you write every single day (like I do), then you know that there are days when even the most interesting story is going to cause you problems.  There are interactions with the real world (Go AWAY!) that can make concentrating harder.  Everything on the screen starts looking the same and boring and -- well, it might be time to make some very basic changes.
If you have the ability, play with different programs.  I use both Word and Scrivener at different times.  (Scrivener is really good for keeping track of Blog Posts, by the way).  At other times, when I feel myself flagging with a manuscript on Word, I'll change the font, the font color, the background -- do all kinds of things just to change things up a bit.
It's easy enough to reformat everything to something normal when you need it to be less silly looking.
I sometimes just change the font color for a new day during the NaNo marathon.  If I'm working in Word, that makes it easy to go back and see where I started for that day and get an accurate word count.
Scrivener is easier for that, of course.  Just start a new entry for each day.  I do wish the PC version had a 'how many words you need per day to reach your goal' feature, but I manage that with my Excel sheet (which I keep year round) anyway.
Which reminds me about my NaNo Stats:
This is year 16
Over 2,800,000 words written
41 manuscripts completed
14 manuscripts published
That's not a bad bit of work. There are several more NaNo novels still to be published, too.  I just need the time to edit and prepare them.  Tales of Grey Station 9 should be fun to get done.  So should Written in the Wind.  And a half dozen others -- and those are just in the NaNo listing.
There's the downside of being prolific.  Suddenly there is stuff you want done NOW so that you can hold the book in your hands and share it with others.  Oh, and read it myself.  I enjoy my own work.  I think everyone should enjoy what they write and want to read it when it's done.  Otherwise, why do you think anyone else should enjoy it?
My big change right now is that I've moved from my spring/summer writing spot to my cozy little autumn/winter office.  The view isn't as good here, but the heat is much better, and my teas are at hand.  I live in snow country (at least some years), and it's good to have a warm spot and the tea maker and teas close by.  And the cats, of course.  I think they appreciate the warm room better than I do.
We're almost ready for November ... as long as no one asks about the outlines for NaNoWriMo.

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