Sunday, October 3, 2010

The Current Writing Method

For the current writing project, which I'm calling the sold soul story, I've gone back to writing by hand. This time around I'm writing on some loose sheets of 20-pound blue paper, folding each sheet in half long ways, and then usually short ways too. I'm numbering each side of the page and hand tallying the words as I go.

Why am I doing it this way? That's a really good question. For one, the blue paper was on hand when I started, and now that I've been working on it for a while in this manner, I've decided this is how I'm going to keep going with it. I've filled six sheets in my small handwriting, and not counting the writing I did last night, I'm at 8,346 words. My goal is to be to 12,899 words by October 13. Including today, that means I've got to do about 330 words per day. That's totally doable.

I ended up not writing on Friday--I was just too damn tired--and when I went back to it last night, I just didn't know what to write. After staring at the paper for more than an hour, writing a few words, and crossing them out, I finally was able to pick up and put something down on the page.

The blue paper also makes me think of Stephen King. In On Writing he said that one of his earliest books (Carrie maybe?) was written on a ream of green paper using an old typewriter. I'm no Stephen King, and I don't know that I ever will be, but something about that keeps with me and helps give me the push I need to keep going.

NaNoWriMo is coming up again and I'm trying to decide how I want to proceed. I don't want to completely abandon the project I'm working on now, and I want my NaNo experience to count, so I'll want to type it up. There's another project I started a while ago that wasn't quite working right, but I think I know how to fix part of it, so I might restart that (I was only about 6,000 words into it when I moved on) and maybe work on both, doing the 1667 words per day of NaNo and 300 words per day of the sold soul project. We'll see how well that works out.


Dr. Phil (Physics) said...

Funny that you mention using paper on hand. I often need a piece of paper for making notes, or working on a piece of a story, especially when I am away from my computer, or sitting somewhere outside.

I take sheets of used computer paper, either old handout masters or the multitudes of daily Sudoku printouts, and fold them twice to make compact, handholdable note sheets. Recently I had to write a 500 word story -- and it just fit when written out on the four sides of my folded paper. Good to know. (grin)

Dr. Phil

mattw said...

Dr. Phil, I would ususally start on paper, just to get things going and then move over to the computer. So far the paper method is working pretty well for me this time around, so I'll stick with it. Transcribing it is going to be a pain in the ass though.