Way back in August I posted a blog on how I’d measured progress against my writing goals over the last three months. Well, it’s November (how did that happen?) and I guess it’s time to have another look.
What’s changed? Plenty, as it turns out.
My goals changed. Instead of worrying about numbers of stories written overall, I thought about practising writing to different lengths – so many flash, so many between 1000-1500 words, and a couple of longer ones. I also looked at placing some of the stories I’d written.
In addition, I wanted to write some non-fiction – so a number of blog posts for here, some for work, and perhaps some other non-fiction, and to continue connecting with other writers and readers on social media.
Another aim was to try out a program called Scrivener, which I’d heard described in glowing terms, and see if it worked for me. And I also wanted to get into some sort of writing routine which worked for me and for the family.
Did I achieve all of this? Of course not!
Here are the stats:
- I completed 24 stories: 21 flash, one just under 1000 words, two between 1000-1500, none over that length (ha!)
- I placed 6 stories which I’d written specifically for a website or ebook opportunity, and I also found homes for 5 stories which I’d originally written on spec, or with no particular place in mind
- I wrote two non-fiction blog posts for work, and nine blog posts here, but sadly no other non-fiction
- I surpassed the target I’d set myself for new writing-related Twitter contacts
- I trialled Scrivener, and found that it is brilliant, and definitely works for me
- As for the writing routine…well, it involves early starts at the weekend, and shoehorning writing in wherever it will go. But my 8-year old has said that he wants to do Flash!Friday – watch out world!
That’s how I did on the stuff I planned. But what else happened?
- While I completed 24 stories, there was one that I couldn’t finish to my liking. I wrote it in a burst, and it was well above the required word limit, and had more holes than a Swiss cheese. So I settled down to edit it. I identified the main problems, and I fixed them. By then it was a better story, but also 400 words longer than when I started; and my edits had opened up further cans of worms. To cut a long story short, this turned out to be the hot potato I wrote about in another blog; the bigger project, the one I needed Scrivener for. As of this morning, it’s 22,000 words long, and yes, it’s still cooking away
- I managed to earn some money. I submitted some bits and pieces to a publication and to my utter amazement, they accepted them. And they’ve paid me in advance of publication
- One of my flash stories is available in an ebook from Amazon (I mean – !!!)
- I attended my first writers’ conference (and was thoroughly tongue-tied when people asked me what I wrote)
- I went to my first writing group, and read out my work for the first time, and didn’t faint, or die. Indeed, in parts I almost enjoyed it
- I’ve become a FlashDog – one of a collective of flash fictioneers who can be found leaping all over the web creating stories. To learn more, visit the blog or @FlashDogs on Twitter
So what now? More of the same, I guess. Over the next few months I’ll be aiming to finish off that spud, and then it’s editing. I have a herd of ideas queueing up to be next. There are always more flash contests to try, more stories to write, more writers to meet…
I wonder what will have happened by February? There’s only one way to find out…see you here in three months!