Friday, August 26, 2011

my writing

Sometimes my writing doesn’t seem to be important to me and other things seem to take priority. But generally when I go out and don’t have the internet to distract me I can get a lot of writing done.

This last week I had an appointment to keep. It was early in the morning, so it was just before lunch time that I was free. I could have gone home, but I decided to treat myself. I stopped in at the local coffeeshop as I know they had seats and tables and one of my favourite meals. I ordered my coffee and roll and sat down with a pad and pen. I always have pen and paper when ever I go out anywhere. You just never really know when inspiration is going to strike.

I obviously had to write longhand as I didn’t have my computer with me. So sitting down with a story I started a little while ago. I ended up writing over two and a half pages. Which would be about 600-700 words. I was very pleased and if I didn’t need to get home, I am sure I could have written more. Just a few days later, while I was at home, waiting for some baking to come out of the oven, I wrote over 5 pages. For some reason this story seems to really be flowing well.

Now most of the time it is more convenient to type the story straight into a word document. Where spelling is fixed and it is easy to read, but sometimes that is not the case. I also find that when I do type a story after writing it longhand I will actually edit it as I copy it. It is also good if you have to story longhand I can take that at time I don’t have a computer and check up story facts without having to wait until I get home.

There are times when I am feeling a little down, tired, and am not very inspired and I am sure that happens to all of us.  I realised it is good to have a goal, either a word limit or a time limit that you will spend writing, just to make sure you do some everyday. Today as I didn’t spend much time online, I did a lot of writing. I am thinking I will have to do that a few times a week, to keep up my writing goals.

But you don’t just have to count what you write in your current WIP (work in progress). Here I am writing a blog and this can be counted as part of my word count for today. But today I didn’t really give myself a goal as I have a meeting tonight.  A writer’s meeting for the first time at my house. It is only a small house and I fear there may only be one other person coming, but that is all right. We might re-figure the group and go in a new direction.

I hope you all enjoy writing.

Melanie Carter Winkler

18 comments:

  1. This is just my first post, so I am not too sure how I have done. So please be kind. I am nervous about this a little bit.

    MEL

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  2. Hi Melanie. It's very encouraging to read your post. My favourite place to write is in a cafe with a decent cappuccino. If I stay at home, which I often have to, then I end up doing things like laundry or washing dishes, but if I can tempt myself out then I still manage to get those things done, but also my writing one chunk at a time. The only thing is the internet is now available in a few too many places and even if it isn't my iPhone lets me Hotspot my computer and I have to be very strong and not check my email too often. Actually, I'm supposed to be writing now and saw this post pop up on facebook... and I really wanted to read it. Well done!

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  3. I am frustrated that my paid working week gets in the way of my writing! You're 'lucky' to have the luxury of time!

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  4. Hi Melanie,
    Congratulations on your first post. I find the same thing sometimes inspiration flows and sometimes it doesn't. Thanks for your honesty.
    Jennifer Ann

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  5. Hi Melanie
    I'm impressed you write longhand. When I attempt to write with pen and paper it is illegible! I do love the luxury of 'Word', where I can swap, change, adjust and fix.
    As I new writer, I've been wondering how people set goals. I set myself a goal of 5000 words a week, but sometimes worry that the quality is compromised in an effort to reach the quantity!
    Thanks for your post.
    Jo

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  6. Well done Melanie. It was great to hear how you've made excellent use of your time and how the inspiration has flowed. Like Jo, I too am very impressed at you writing in longhand. You've done very well in your first post and here's looking forward to more from your pen.
    Anusha

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  7. I really enjoyed your post Melanie. I find myself frustrated by the fact that, at times, life’s menial tasks get in the way of my writing. There are days that I don’t write, and there are days I write all day. I cannot read my handwriting, so that’s out (I envy you that – very cool) But I’ve come to the conclusion that there’s no right or wrong. I used to get worried that I wasn’t following the instructions by writing every day, but now I’ve realized that the time frames that work for me produce the best work.

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  8. Thanks for sharing your experience Melanie. I too cannot do the longhand thing - my brain goes to fast for my hand. LOL But great that you can do that. Getting past the distractions and day-to-day stuff is the hard part. I had to really discipline myself to get any writing done at all. Like Narelle said, the working week gets in the way a lot. Sigh! :)

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  9. Thanks for being so honest, Mel. All of you have set me thinking about writing goals now. There are just so many other things that HAVE to be done all the time, they seem to take up all of my 'goal' efforts at the moment. As to writing at a cafe, I haven't tried that. But... there is one thing I find really helpful: keeping paper and pen next to my bed! I often get inspirational thoughts just before I fall asleep. And if I don't write them down, they're gone. Also, when I've been puzzling over a problem (writing or other), the answers usually pop up in the morning, just after I wake up. Or even during the night. Just thought I'd pop that in. Wouldn't want to be without my 'bedside writing':) Thanks again, Melanie!

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  10. Hi Melanie!
    Wow ... that is a lot of hand writing - I get so distracted on the computer - perhaps I should try writing more by hand .... ( I doubt I will... ) great post ... thanks for sharing some of your journey. xx

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  11. Keep it up, Melanie. Sounds like a great use of time.

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  12. Hi Melanie, I write by hand when I'm in a difficult area of my work and am wanting to get into deep point of view.

    I also have a friend who writes her novels by hand. I'm amazed at her productivity. She believes it is more organic than using a keyboard. Well done on working out how you like to write.

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  13. Hi, Mel,

    Great post. I find if I write using my computer, I tend to correct as I go which gets in the way of those creative juices. I use an Alphasmart. It's been a massive blessing for me. No matter where I go, it goes with me. I can type correspondence, ideas, work notes etc, all on the move.

    How did your writing group go? I'm sure you had a great time. :)

    Lee

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  14. I have written longhand with a pencil and eraser, in a really pretty exercise book, while sipping coffee in a cafe. It tricks my brain into thinking I'm playing not working, and so it is so much easier to do. Word counts - most days I write 500 a day. This is my novel writing. It seems so little but it adds up in no time. I start everyday with 3 morning pages - to clear my head, to explore ideas, to whinge, to pray...

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  15. I began in long hand when I wrote my first book. Then I'd ask my husband later in the night to put it on computer. After some time, he began rubbing his eyes and said,"Just let me rest my eyes a bit, they're stinging." I felt so guilty, I decided then and there to learn to handle a computer. And now I'm blogging. Wonders will never cease!

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  16. I am so encouraged by all your comments. :)

    I got used to longhand before I got my laptop. And at work, where we had to write the details down. My hand writing used to be terrible, but I have found I can read most of what I write. There are times I have had to inspect my writing to work out what is says.

    MEL

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  17. Mel, great first post! There are times when I write longhand and edit as I type up my notes. I'm late commenting on your post because I only just reached my 5000 word Book in a Week goal late yesterday afternoon, and all those words are longhand. I wrote 1300 words in the car whilst my kids were at tennis. One morning I wrote 500 words before 7am. There's no right or wrong way, and I've learned to make myself write even when I don't feel like it.

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  18. Wonderful post! I keep a small notebook in my handbag for moments of inspiration. It's a great tool to catch those ideas which find us when we least expect them. I find the 'notes' function on my phone good as well... for when I'm in the car and I need to capture a good idea before it escapes. I do try to wait until I've parked the car though!!

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