Monthly Writing Check In

“Remember: Plot is no more than footprints left in the snow after your characters have run by on their way to incredible destinations.”

Ray Bradbury

The grayness of February is gone. February always sticks out to me as the coldest month of the year, but we had some surprisingly warm weather mid-February. It was a nice reprieve, and we finished the month with our first bigger snowfall of the year.

I wish I had been more productive writing-wise in February. However, when I look back at what I accomplished, it still is progress in a lot of ways. February started off with a short break from my novel. Since I finished it at the end of January, I wanted to let it rest for a bit. I used this time to try and write some short fiction. I spent the first few days of February writing various flash fiction pieces, only to realize that I really hate writing flash fiction. I love reading it, and there are some amazing, incredible flash pieces out there, but mine are terrible. My stories end up being “too big” and want to escape the confines of the page or two that I put them on. I’m not saying that flash isn’t something I couldn’t work toward getting better at, but I’m not sure I want to focus on them anymore, either. I like long stories, and I think that I am fairly decent at short stories so I’m going to keep working on those too.

I also started writing a new short story but only got four pages in and realized it’s not going in the direction I want it to. It’s an idea I like, but don’t love, so I’m tabling it for now. Then I started another story that I assumed was going to be short. And I fell in love.

When I began writing this new piece, I literally had a single line in my mind. I meant it to be a writing exercise, just to get myself back into writing a new story, and it ended up taking off. I wrote about 7000 words of this story in February (about 26 pages) and realized it is going to probably be a novella. I have a lot of story left to tell, and I am so excited to continue writing it in March. It’s nice to have a piece that I can keep working on while I head back into the daunting task of editing my novel.

On that front, I edited about 18 pages so far. The first chapter took me days to edit on just this round! I couldn’t believe how long I would spend on a single paragraph, but it was in rough shape. It’s still not perfect. My husband, who is incredible at world-building, is going to read my book and give me feedback every four chapters. I’m hoping he can help me dredge up ways to enhance my world-building and show the magic and characters of my story in a better way. I’m still not done with the first four chapters though, but I’m excited to work with him on this once I get those done.

My goals were to finish this new story in February and get through the first eight chapters of my book. That didn’t even come close to happening. Sometimes we set goals for ourselves and completely miss them. I ended up beta reading two books for friends in February, and I loved every moment of reading their stories, and this always gives me insight into my own writing as well. I am amazed by these two writers! They have spent so much time rewriting and editing their books, and it shows. I can’t wait to see where their journey takes them next. I can’t wait to buy their books one day!

I found myself not having the time to write as often as I would like. I’m behind on book reviews and blog content altogether, but sometimes life can get stressful, and I’ve noticed writing is a very cyclical process. There are moments of pure productivity and periods where you feel as if you can’t get any story right. Like life, writing has its ups and downs. I’m hoping to have a more productive March, and I’m looking forward to seeing where these stories take me next.

For all my lovely creative friends out there, how did your February turn out?

4 thoughts on “Monthly Writing Check In

Add yours

  1. Your “flash fiction always grows and then grows too big and ope, now it’s a short story” is me with every short story. I swear I can’t write anything shorter than a full-length novel. 😂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I feel the travails regarding short fiction. I think a novella is as low as I can go most times.

    Speaking of which, Feb was mostly spent finishing then starting to edit a novella, and also playing with some other projects. Feel okay for what I did all things considered!

    Liked by 1 person

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