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  1. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    508
    I have to agree with the tenor of Jena's posts. I think it's a bit dangerous to move on to another project or to take a break of more than day or two. Like Jena said, that's how folks end up with thirty unfinished manuscripts under their desks.

    Perhaps the thing is to remind yourself that you don't have to be invigorated to keep going. There's no rule stating that you'll only do good editing when you're feeling all vigorous. Some days you plod along, knowing that half of what you do will need work; other days you fly. That's just how it goes.

    Some tricks.

    Plant the next problem in your brain when you leave your day's work. Just read or take notes on what you've got to tackle tomorrow when you knock off for the day. It's amazing what your brain will do without you even having to pay attention.

    Take a day off straight sequential editing and do something like go through all the dialog of one character, getting all that character's verbal ticks down. Or, on really bad days, just search and find all your thats to see how many aren't that important. Or stop and research something you'd like to be more realistic. Or go sit on a park bench and watch people walk and see how you can refine your walking descriptions. Or search the net for photos that will inspire you to describe a character or a character's car or whatever with more fine-tuned details. Paintings are great for that because you can see how the painter re-imagined some object and get ideas for descriptions that do more. I could go on. But you get the idea. There are lots of ways to be working when you can't bear to keep slogging through the straight narrative.

    Oh, one more idea. A couple of times, when I've been where you are, I've rented a cabin out somewhere and just devoted two straight days with no distraction to making progress. There are writers colonies that cater to this very problem. Even some small, local writing groups have such retreats.

    Most importantly, just know that these slumps are part of the process. Beat the slump any way you can.



  2. #12
    Senior Member Avonne Writer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Southern California, USA
    Posts
    1,030
    There is also merit as a newbie writer in starting another project, and here's why.

    If it's your first project it really could be crap. I know mine was. I see that now, because i have moved on and grown and done other research which expanded my horizons. I can look back at my first (virgin) project and realize that it was a great experience. And, that's all it was.

    Now, on my 2nd project, I worked it out til the end. But, that doesn't mean it is any better. In deed, now that I am on my third, I can see where the 2nd one went wrong.... anyway. I am personally finishing up my third, to where I think it shines, before going back to number two.

    So, I guess I'm doing, or have done, both. I've moved on, and I've finished a project before moving on.

    I guess whatever works for you.lol
    Last edited by Avonne Writer; 05-12-2011 at 11:00 PM.

  3. #13
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    4
    If you hate your story, that's great news! You can come back to it a few days later with a merciless scalpel. The danger is when you fall in love with your story and believe it to be perfect. As the old joke has it:

    Q: how many new authors does it take to change a light bulb?
    A: why does it need to be changed?

  4. #14
    No doubt you've saved the toughest revisions for last -- which is a good idea, actually, so that you have a majority of the stuff done and out of the way. Now, you're down to the hardest part. But you can get through it with a simple 1-2-3 approach:

    1) When you're feeling burned out and demoralized, sometimes the best thing to do is focus on the details instead of the big picture. That means your best strategy is to tackle each segment of the revision one piece at a time. So choose one aspect of your story that you want to revise and focus on it with laser-like intensity.

    2) How do you keep your inspiration fresh? Take a little time and find the one thing in this part of the story that really gets you excited. Maybe it's an image, maybe a feeling, maybe the setting. Whatever it is, start writing from there.

    3) Once you've started doing this particular aspect of the rewrite, keep hammering on it until it's done. Don't stop and switch to something else. If you have another idea, make a quick note and then go back to what you were doing.

    That's it! You'll be done before you know it. Good luck!

  5. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    272
    Thank you all for the advice! I will be back online in a couple of days to write more - am staying with family without internet. WITHOUT INTERNET!!!

    I loved your suggestion about the dialog, CK. And taking a break may well be what I need.

    Will let you know what helps!!!

  6. #16
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    6
    Yes it happened when editing.You can take break and fresh up your mind.About 20% as you said, at that time you can take tea or some other refreshments.A small break would be helpful in re-writing.

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