Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Time Management Tuesday: Focusing On An Achievable Goal

Okay, folks, National Novel Writing Month starts tomorrow. I don't have all my chapters blueprinted, but, in better news, all that NaNoWriMo cooking I told you about a couple of days ago survived a thirteen-hour power outage Sunday night through mid-Monday afternoon.

I am not officially doing NaNoWriMo. I didn't sign up. In part this is because I'm working on a novel I've already started back in 2004 or 5 when I officially did NaNo. On top of that, I started a revision earlier this year. So, no, I'm not actually following the rules for NaNo 2017. Also, I have no hope of finishing this puppy this month. I'm not even going to sit down with the calendar and work out how few full writing days I've got in November.

The stash I found yesterday
Finally, while I've done the best job I've ever done of prepping a project before starting, I'm vague on the final chapters, which isn't promising for finishing. And I've been working on that right down to the wire. Yesterday, during that extended power outage I was talking about, which meant no computer access, I worked on cleaning my desk, because I'm serious about working next month. Gotta work at that desk instead of the kitchen counter or a couch. What did I find on the top of a filing cabinet but a stack of materials/ideas I'd been collecting on this project since around 2004, that last NaNo attempt? Going through it was helpful, though finding it says volumes about my organizational and cleaning skills, doesn't it?

Nonetheless, finishing a book in a month is not my goal this year. It's not how I expect to use my time.

So How Are You Going To Use Your Time, Gail? 

Well, I'm going to shoot for:

  • Two-thirds of a book.
  • A plan for the last third of the book.
  • A month of focus training

Focus Training Or All NaNo, All The Time

My plan is to spend all my writing time writing the NaNo project. Learn to focus by focusing. I have one NESCBWI event to prepare for, but otherwise I'm not using any writing time for:

  • Submissions.
  • Blogging, except for National Novel Writing updates and news and the December CCLC. I'm hoping to use some of that blogging time for "the project." Whatever little bit I can do then will be a way of training myself to work more frequently, say...every day?
  • Prepping material for writers' group. In fact, I just this minute decided not to go!
Prepping today--still not at my desk
So I've got a two-fer going starting tomorrow. I'm generating material and developing monk-like intensity.

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