Monday, July 21, 2008

Gardens, Boats and Batman--Weekend Wrap Up

This was a crazy busy weekend. Friday I worked late on my second job, so that made the day slight lame. Oh, and I've had a sore throat for almost a week and I was feel esp crappy Friday night.

I made up for it the rest of the weekend. I'm joining the Jr League and I had my first meeting on Saturday--well, the orientation. I met some super interesting women. If you are a woman between 21 and 40, you should see if you have a chapter in your area. The Junior League reminds me of a grown-up sorority that focuses on Philanthropic activities. I worked nearly 8 hours (and had to blow off a friend's open house party :(, which was sad), but I caught the midnight showing of Batman. It was *awesome*. I highly recommend it. It actually had a bit of a plot in addition to the great scenes and lots of the filming was in Chicago. On the last movie they did alot of CG to make it look less like Chicago, but on this one they mostly just didn't show landmarks, but living in the city, I recognized tons of places.

Sunday, I woke up and worked some and then we went to the Dearborn Garden walk in Chicago's "Gold Coast". Beautiful gardens in multi-million dollar homes. Crazy to be right downtown and feel like you are a million miles away.

We went with Brad and Ana, the people who's party I wasn't able to go to, so it was nice to spend time with them. After, the four of us went out to the Yacht Club where I got *blatantly* hit on by some drunk software millionaire nearly 20 years older than me (cliche and gross). Well, it wasn't bad at first, we were all talking and he has an interesting story and then it slowly got worse and worse, but too slow to notice until we were all too into the conversation to leave easily. And Pete's sitting there goofing off on Facebook on his cell phone, which of course made the guy worse cuz it looked like Pete didn't care. And Brad found it funny, because he's Brad and likes situational humor. It's, I don't want to see your sailboat. Pete, don't shrug when he says your crazy lucky. No, I don't care if you are looking for a Dir of IT; I like my job... How does my ring not look like a wedding band? I'm confused. Makes for a funny story though, I guess. At one point, he grabbed my hand and pulled me over to the window to point out his boat. That was about the time that even Brad was ready to abandon our drinks and leave the bar. Oh well.

And then I went home and worked on work for another two hours. No writing :(

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Wednesday Update

I'm going to start giving an update on Wednesdays. When I remember....

Word Count (Rough Draft): 17161
Word Count (Revised) : 0
Word Count Total : 17161

What went well this week: I'm a bit back on track as far as plotting goes. I had kinda fallen off the writing wagon, but I'm back on now.

What didn't go as well: I've got a part of the story that is a journey and I've got no idea what to do with the plot, but that is where the romance subplot has to happen so I need some interesting challenges to be thrown at the characters.

Goal for next week: 20k word count and outline journey

Also, I'm basically writing glorified outlines with mostly telling instead of showing. I want to, after hitting the 20k mark, have at least the first two chapters revised (they are very short chapters)

Monday, July 14, 2008

Weekend Wrap Up

This weekend was pretty good. Friday I had happy hour after work. We are a pretty small shop. Two people didn't show and the the two guys left early because they had prior plans and then the four Polish girls who all live in the suburbs left at the same time, leaving me and my boss. Since I didn't want to say "thanks for the drinks" and split, I said that I'd wait for him to get the bill and we had a good little chat about the future of the company and my place in it. About a year ago we split from the parent company and have been paying them dividends. I guess he expects to be to 50 people in about three years. I'd have a decent staff, which would be a nice change of pace.

Then Pete and I went out to dinner at this cute little French Restaurant in Andersonville (Chicago neighborhood I live in) called La Tache. We even got to bring Sadie, our border collie with us. That's her in the picture.

Saturday we had Pete's company picnic. We've got a few friends that work with Pete that we hang out with alot so it was nice to see them. We got together after a little bit too. Sunday I managed to get some plot work in. I thought up a few good twists and did some charector development for some of the minor characters. I also got some work in for my side job.

I'm officially starting back to college in the fall to finish my degree at Roosevelt University. Between school, the real job and the side job, I'm a bit worried that writing might fall by the wayside :(. I guess I better get as much in as I can between now and September.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

14k and a Play

It seems so sad to be sitting at 14k words when I had 20k a couple of months ago. But between pulling apart the two story lines and moving to first person, I lost a lot of scenes and I had to go back and do alot of replotting. The writing that I have now is much more shored up--which is good. And the writing doesn't make me cringe so much--which is better.

Tomorrow I am going try and put in 1k more of plot and then I'm going to go over what I've got so far and make it better. I think that my goal will be to do that every 15k (but only over that 15k).

I'm going to the theator tonight with the hubby and some of our friends. Going to see Aint Misbehavin at the Goodman here in Chicago. Should be good fun :)

Monday, July 7, 2008

Developing Efficient Writing Work Habits

I'm writing this article because I have horrible writing work habits. I have great excuses--primarily the day job, which is going well and isn't a means to an ends, but a great passion in and of itself. You'd be amazed how similar writing a novel is to writing a computer program. Seriously. But that's a different post.

Writing is a habit.

If you create an act, you create a habit. If you create a habit, you create a character. If you create a character, you create a destiny.
-André Maurois

Very true. And when applied to writing, getting into the habit of writing starts with the act of writing. If you don't put your pen to page (or fingers to keyboard, as case may be) then you aren't going to write a novel. Which is something I keep having to remind myself.

I'm a fan of the "Butt in Chair" (BIC) method of writing. You just have to set aside time to write, consitantly, and stick to it. It's just like going to the gym (not that I do that either...).

Is it your Writing Time but you have no inspiration for your plot moving forward? Write about a character's back story or have your antagonist write a letter to his mom. If it's a Fantasy novel, write about some of the myths or histories--if it's not, maybe write something about a character's grandpa. Just write. After a while, you'll start along on your book. Don't forget to keep it organized. I've got a writing notebook, a three-ring binder that I keep everything that I don't have in yWriter. I could easily put all of it there, but I like to have the backstory, myths, maps, etc in a seperate, physical place.

Despite my belief in the BIC method, I'm one of those writers who really doesn't come up with new plot material while I'm writing. I come up with it when I'm walking to the train, doing my shopping, cleaning, driving, etc. Maybe I could start cleaning as part of my writing. The hubby'd be happy that I got some done :-P

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Re-plotting along

So the other plot line has been removed (and stored away as a potential jumping point for a new story). Now I've decided to make it first person, which is requiring a massive rewrite of the plot line that I left intact, but I'm really starting to like what I've got going on. I'm not as good at first person, mostly because I usually write in third, but I think that it's making for a much stronger book.

4th of July weekend ended up being pretty good. I took Friday and Saturday totally off and just hung out with family and friends. A much needed break. Now I'm all ready to try and get this book going again!

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