Thursday, February 28, 2008


Many of you see authors use this term, but if you don't know what it means it is the work-in-progress. That is, whatever manuscript/s the author is working on at the moment.

Each author approaches writing differently. Some are meticulous plotters, others are pantsters (writing by the seat of their pants), while many fall somewhere in-between. Some authors like music while they're writing, while others need complete silence. Sometimes there are elaborate rituals to get an author in the right headspace to write. Some authors are able to write a lot in one day, others a little.

Whatever or however the process unfolds, each writer has to find their own way.

I outline characters and major plot points ahead of time. Once I have the opening scene in my mind, I start writing, letting the story take me wherever it needs to go. Silence is a necessity for me to write. I can't have music or the television on in the background. Too distracting. I don't have any rituals before beginning writing, but I do prefer to write in the morning before the world intrudes on my brain too much.

I try and write Monday to Friday, and usually put in some time on either Saturday or Sunday. While I'm working on a book, I don't like having two days without writing. It disrupts the flow of the book.


Well, I just finished a 60K rough draft of my latest book. I started it on February 1st, so I'm pleased with my output this month.

Now comes the fun part--revision. I'll spend the next week or so revising the work, trying to turn it into something special. :-)


Titania Ladley said...

Hey, N.J., Happy Thursday!

Wow, 60K in 28 days? Your fingers must be sore! *g* Good for you on such great progress.

Your approach to writing sounds very similar to mine. I can't write with TV, music, or people talking in the other room, etc. Even just *knowing* someone's in the house is distracting to me. I do, however, write well to the sounds of nature, like trees swishing in the breeze, wind howling around the eaves, or birds tweeting. LMAO!

I'm somewhere down the middle with outlining and such. Some books just take off and I write by the seat of my pants. Others I write a synopsis or outline first and go from there. I'm currently experimenting with the use of a storyboard and really liking it. One odd side note...sometimes I have to have at least a tentative title before I can start writing. Strange, eh? :)

Have a great weekend, hon!


Brynn Paulin said...

Congrats on completing your draft!!

Anny Cook said...

Wow, congrats on completing your draft. Yours are always special. I write all times of day. And I seem to work best just going along... like Titania, I work better with a title in mind--it seems to sum up the story.

My place is never silent. At the moment the wind is blowing so the windchimes are clanging away, but I really like that.

Looking forward to the new book!

Kathy said...

So....any teaser about what your wip is about?:-)

N.J.Walters said...

Thanks, Titania. I feel like I've put in a good month's work. :-)

I don't mind the wind or even the traffic when the window is open. But television and music are out.

I tend to have a working title too, even if I know it has to change. I've never used a storyboard. Sounds fascinating? You should blog about it so I can learn more. LOL

N.J.Walters said...

Thanks, Brynn.

N.J.Walters said...

Thanks, Anny. I don't mind "normal" noise like wind, traffic, etc... But anything that might take my attention--TV or music--is out for me.

N.J.Walters said...

LOL Not yet, Kathy. I'm odd, but I don't like to talk about my WIP. I feel like I'll jinx myself or something. I always announce it when/if it's contracted.

Although, there were vampires and much blood sucking involved. *g*

Kathy said...

Oh cool I love vampires.:-)

Shelley Munro said...


My writing process sounds similar but I don't mind noise. I just tune everything out. I tend to write six days a week and have a day off, although if edits arrive things get changes. Congrats on finishing your draft.

N.J.Walters said...

Me too, Kathy. *g*

N.J.Walters said...

Thanks, Shelley. Edits change everything. If I'm lucky enough to get edits I drop everything else to work on them.

I love edits. :-) Means a book is closer to being released!