Wednesday, April 11, 2018

A to Z - All About Writing: Juggling Projects

Welcome to the Blogging A to Z Challenge, where, this month, I'll be focusing on all things writing. This may be a random jumping around of topics within my theme, but hopefully something somewhere will be useful to someone. (V is for vague - see that last sentence.) Check out all the participants here . Now, lets get on with today's letter.

J is for Juggling Projects

When the ideas come to fast to finished one thing before jumping to the next, how does one handle that?

I'd like to say that I only ever work on one story at a time because it would make me sound all organized, but that really just isn't the case. I do have one main project I try to stick with at a time, but there are usually a couple secondary things bouncing around in my head. And hey! Look! A Sparkly chicken! Darn ideas, are always popping up.

The best way I've found to manage them is to jot those ideas down, either in a computer file - which I do attempt to be organized and have an ideas folder on my hard drive - or in a notebook. The notebook is what a lot of people tell me they use. I have a lot of notebooks. While that sounds like I should be all good then, I'm not. I have a lot of notebooks and I have no idea what is in most of them. Rather than spend an aggravating couple days flipping through (Because I have done that and I'm not a pleasant person when I can't find something), those notebooks for the idea/ending/outline/note to self/ character idea / that one cool name I don't want to forget / etc, I'm sooooo much better off just creating a file for it and naming whatever it is and then hitting save. I know where those things are and can just search on my computer for them if it comes down to that.

Back to the juggling. I usually have a project in progress, one I've just finished that I'm contemplating edits for, and a new one or unfinished one that I'm pondering and gathering ideas for. And still, one of those sparkly chickens will hit me now and then. If it's a short story and I'm in the middle of a novel, I'm not opposed to taking a couple days off to get that story down - assuming I have it mostly formed in my head. If it's going to take days to drag out the first half and require a good deal of research, it goes into the ideas file for later. 

Working on multiple things at once isn't a terrible thing, but do try to focus on finishing one of those things before diving headfirst into the next big thing. You'll feel a lot more accomplished.

How many projects do you prefer to work on at once?


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9 comments:

  1. That's what Am doing. Still not quite done with the memoir but right now working on the diary novel. I wrote down a dream about two moths ago that I think might work as a story, and am wondering if I should begin it and when.

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    1. I would suggest finishing one of the two projects you currently have going before diving into the new one. That way the finished project can be chilling while you work on the new project and then go back into it later for edits.

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  2. the idea that one can finish one project before moving on to the next is a bit absurd because sometimes a particular projects calls to you and you just have to stop whatever you're doing and go do that one.

    so I guess that means I prefer to work on multi projects all at once or just one at a time depending on what it is. it's probably why I haven't finished anything.

    have a lovely day.

    my latest a-z is: jolly laughs

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    1. Limiting yourself to only a few projects at a time might help with completing at least one of them before moving on to the other new ones begging for attention. :)

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  3. I have a lot of notebooks, too. The other day I went looking and couldn't find a lone so just pulled a piece of paper from the printer. I can't juggle even one project right now.

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    1. I hope you find your notebook eventually. :)

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  4. I am strictly one story at a time. Not necessarily a sign of organization, but simply that ideas only come along once in a while so I'm not trying to juggle a teeming hive of thoughts vying for attention. I envy people with that kind of creativity.

    Also, I can only really concentrate on one at a time anyway. It takes me a while to immerse myself in the characters and the threads of the story. One at a time is quite enough for a simpleton like me :)

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    1. Having read some of you work, I can easily say your not a simpleton. ;) Some writers are just more focused. The rest of us are off chasing sparkly squirrels.

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  5. I'm with Botanist. I like things one project at a time or else I feel like I'll never get anything done. I guess I still feel that way, actually. LOL!

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