MARCH MADNESS Check-In: Day 7

FRIDAY FOCUS

mm 2014 wordle

How was your first week of March Madness?

Kudos to those who have braved the storm (literally and figuratively) to achieve their goals in Week One.Β And if you’re reading this and have not yet signed up, what are you waiting for? SET YOUR GOALS AND JOIN THE FUN!

Heads-up for some of the visual accoutrements. Nothing too graphic, anatomically speaking, but it certainly gets the intended sentiment across to the audience. πŸ™‚

What kind of writer are you? What’s your style (du jour)?

We’ve got plotters.

Dr-Evil from crossandcutlassDOTblogspotDOTcom

We’ve got pantsers, *ahem*.

depants

We’ve even got chickens with their heads cut off–or something.

Jack Sparrow running gif from giphyDOTcom

Don’t despair.

not_listening2

Do whatever works for you, but also don’t be afraid–like Jack or Gollum–to try something new. It makes the writing journey more fun.

In the coming week, try something different with your writing or creative goals.

If writing fiction, try a writing technique you’d normally shy away from such as changing tenses or POVs. That’s not to say you’ll make it a permanent change but you’d be surprised at what insight you can gain from a scene you might not have otherwise noticed. This works especially well if you write the same scene from a different character’s POV.

For non-fiction, try writing a piece that is outside your wheelhouse or even your comfort zone. Stretch your investigative skills and see where it takes you.

If writing poetry, try free verse, a haiku, or even a sonnet. Poetry slam, anybody?

If you type, try longhand, or vice-versa.

If you’re in the midst of creative projects such as scrapbooking to full-on home renovations, experiment with medium and color.

You’re only limited by your imagination, and I know for a fact that this stellar group is known for amazingness.

Whatever you do in the coming week, remember to enjoy yourself. Live your passion. March Madness is more than its name, and should always be thought of in a positive light.

=|=|=

“Creativity is intelligence having fun.”

~ Albert Einstein ~

=|=|=

The guy was a genius. I think we should hear him out on this one.

The fun and Madness continues tomorrow at the always delightful Carol Garvin’s blog.

Until then, isn’t there something you should be doing right now?

jack-sparrow-running

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29 thoughts on “MARCH MADNESS Check-In: Day 7

  1. I’m the chicken πŸ™‚

    I hit a stubborn scene in my revisions last night, so I set my current WIP aside to daydream about a new one. I *think* I might write it (at least the first draft) in 3rd person, something I’ve never done before. It seems to fit with this character.

    But that’s something to worry about later, I’ve got a revision to finish!

    • Ah, yes. The ever insightful daydream. I love those. I’m a firm believer in letting WIPs marinate, too. The time away will help you gain perspective. Writing in 3rd person (I’m assuming you’re going with past-tense, right? :D) can be difficult, at times, if you’re after a more intimate communication between protag and reader. I think you’re instincts will lead you in the right direction.

      If you need another pair of eyes to see if it works, I’m just a click away.

      Good luck with the revisions!

  2. Funny you should mention a poetry slam. Experienced that for the first time this week. Loved participating, but was overwhelmed by the profanity of the entire evening. Not my scene. Enjoyed shocking the idealistic, hipster English majors, though. ^+^

    Forgive me, but I must add a plug for Ace Hansen. Great giveaway of his novel and sweet prizes here: http://anallegedauthor.blogspot.com/

    Happy with this weeks writing. Missed my goal yesterday, but am going to try to make up those extra pages this morning. Off I go. Happy weekend, Wipsters!

    • I’ve done public speaking, I’ve done theatre, but a poetry slam is a different creative beast. The cadence alone has me in awe. Yes, it’s still a performance, but the passion is raw. True, the profanity is ‘in your face’ at times. That’s probably the part SLAM portion, too, eh? LOL It’s compelling storytelling, I’ll give them that.

      All is forgiven because Ace is aces! Here’s another one… –> ACE HANSEN GOODNESS –> Great giveaway of his novel and sweet prizes here: http://anallegedauthor.blogspot.com/

      I’m sure you’ll be caught up in no time. It’s early days yet. πŸ™‚

  3. Howdy and thanks for hosting this year! I’ve thought a lot about POV lately. The New Adult novel I’m revising is written in 1st person, as are most of my older YA pieces. It just seems to work best for me. All 3 of the Picture Books I’ve done are in 3rd. When I try to write in 3rd for older works, my characters fall flat. So this week, I’m going to try and extract a scene from my wip and attempt to write it in 3rd, just for creative kicks and giggles. We’ll see. πŸ™‚

    I’ve been working extremely hard on my revisions this past week. I’m down to only 71 pages of my wip for this pass. I’m excited because, I will most likely be able to get it beta reader ready, which was my ultimate goal for March!

    I love the #Wipmadness challenge, and I’d like to take a moment and acknowledge Angelina Hansen for introducing me to this group a few years ago. Thank you, Angelina! It’s been a fabulous motivator in my writing since I joined up. Also, I’m not sure if you recall the evening I was down and out about my writing (maybe a year and a half ago), and I sent out a plea for help on Twitter. You answered me. Then, you visited my blog and threw me a cyber rope and told me to grab on. I did, friend. I’m not sure which direction I would’ve traveled at you not responded. Big ((((hugs)))) to you.

    • Third time in the Madness, I felt ready to host. It’s easy when you have these amazing people around you. πŸ™‚

      Writing is sometimes like an intense game of Jenga. In the end, your choices are what make the story work or fall apart. The pieces to your story fit in a way only you can tell it. That said, it is fun to try something different. I’m not surprised anymore when I discover new flavors to a story I thought I’d wrapped my brain around only to peel away new layers.

      Great to hear about your revision progress. If you need a beta reader, let me know.

      The WIPster family has been kind to me. These last couple of years have been an enriching experience for me, as a writer. I owe a lot to everyone here. I do recall how we first connected. I’m a huge fan of the Pay it Forward movement. Not to mention the fact that, to me, helping fellow writers (or anyone in need, for that matter) is the right thing to do. I like to do what I can when I can. So, I’m glad you grabbed the rope, Candilynn. I was just new to the #wipmadness community at that time, but already felt the importance of our cause and appreciation for our camaraderie. Big hugs back to ya. I’m thrilled to know I had a positive affect on someone. I think that is more satisfying than any small gesture I may have extended. Cheers! You made my day.

  4. Oh my gosh….can’t stop laughing. Right now I am a chicken but when I go get today I hope to be a plotter! Go team #wipmadness and thanks for keeping us writing, laughing and inspired!

    • You can be a chicken plotter… imagine that story arc! Every twist and turn will get ya!

      Happy my first hosting post wasn’t a hot mess, though. Inspired writing imbued with laughter sounds pretty great (when the genre permits, of course)!

      Indeed, go team #wipmadness!

  5. Fabulous post, Tonette! I’ve been a pantser and a plotter. Right now I’m sort of stuck in the middle trying to crawl inside the head of my MC and re-imagine the world.

    • Thank you!

      I think I find myself in the middle, as well. There are times I’ve over plotted and found myself squeezed in a tight plot box. Other times, I’d be mucking about for days without a true sense of where the story was headed. These days, I plot with wiggle room. I’m more open to accepting new ideas and create subfolders for when stories deviate. Since ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ is trademarked, I call my writing method the ‘What if?’ approach. I don’t scrap old story ideas. I’m a self-proclaimed word-hoarder, after all. But I have many versions of a story and while the WIP continues to brew, I revisit those other versions. Sometimes when I hit an obstacle I ask myself how that would work in Version 2.0, XYZ, etc. It either ends up enhancing the story, as a whole, or I come to the obvious realization the idea needs to seriously exit stage left.

      Have fun crawling inside your character’s head. It’s one of my favorite things to do in the writing process.

  6. Love the pictures and gifs, Tonette! I also love head-hopping, especially during early drafts, to make sure I really know my secondary characters and antagonist. I find it really helpful and interesting to play around in someone else’s head for a while.

    After all of that talk about being a tortoise, yesterday was a stellar day of revising for me. I was able to sit down for several hours in a row (which never happens!) and really sink into my manuscript. I’m feeling much better about it today.

    • Yay, for stellar writing days!

      I started off alright and ended up with a hacked Twitter account. LOL It’s always fun deleting hundreds of spammy tweets in the middle of the night.

      When it comes to storytelling, my own or others, I’m a HUGE fan of secondary characters and the baddies. Sure, everyone’s all about the protag, but that’s like saying a delicious pot roast is a delicious pot roast because of the meat. It might be the main attraction but there are so many other elements that make it full of flavor, no? For the non-meat eaters out there… it’s like tofu. And that’s it. Unless you’re into that, tofu is more appetizing when enhanced by other ingredients. I’d go on to pescatarian and vegan analogies, too, but I’m still half-asleep from an ugly twitter-infused night.

      Anyhoo, yes. Head-hopping does have its uses in the writing process. πŸ™‚

  7. Had to backtrack and tear apart/rewrite the climax the last two days, but should be into smoother waters now. This close to the end of rewriting I get impatient and have to slow myself down and make sure I’m doing a proper job.

    • As long as you keep all your previous incarnations, you’re golden. I did a major overhaul once and lost important backstory information. It disrupted the logical flow of the story. Pacing yourself is good and congrats on nearing the finish line!

    • There’s no right or wrong method, as each has its merits. That’s the great thing about writing. As long as it’s helping your creative process, high fives all around!

  8. I love that Einstein quote!

    I once described myself as being somewhere midway between a plotter and a pantser… a planner of sorts. From my initial mental image of a main character doing ‘something’, I like to think about a potential direction for the story, think about how it could end, maybe even dream up a few possible plot points, but then I just blast on into it. No formal plotting at all. As a result, my writing journey is probably more like a pantser’s, because I often end up off track, heading in a different direction than I originally expected. The benefit is that it’s always interesting and challenging, and I seldom get bogged down.

    That said, I don’t always make great speed either, which is where I’m at now… feeling my way into the early stages of the story. I’m into the second chapter now, so making slow and steady progress. I really related to Denise’s tortoise-and-hare analogy yesterday! I hope the rest of our faithful March Madnessers (Shari’s term) have had a good week of writing (or reading, or whatever they’re doing). Happy weekend, everyone!

    • Carol, I’ve got a few more Einstein said but I’ll spread the brain candy over the coming weeks. My sister actually found this one for me and I thought it appropriate for March Madness.

      I’ve borrowed the phrase in the past, “It’s the journey, not the destination that matters.” Well, naturally, the end goal of a writer DOES indeed matter, but that is not to say that we should zip through the steps to get there. I think it’s just fine to take your time in the early stages. Think of it like a courtship, a first date. You want to see if goes anywhere. No sense in rushing only to end up disappointed, right?

      I like your mixed process, though. And yes, it will always be interesting and challenging.

      I hope your unexpected new directions lead to something wonderful! See you on your blog tomorrow. πŸ™‚

  9. I’m totally the plotter. I’m very anal with my outlines. I tried writing by the seat of my pants and nothing got finished.

    So far this week been attacking at least 2 revision chapters. My online RWA class on ‘Saving your manuscript’ has really helped. That and being accountable to you guys! We all can do it!

  10. I am the plotter.
    And that’s only because I used to be the no headed chicken. I wrote in circles and my first attempt at writing read similarly to Chevy Chase’s character in Funny Farm. “I think there’s even a flash sideways.”
    I used to be like the painter who didn’t want to take the time to put painter’s tape around the ceiling, thinking it was a waste of time and I was too good to need it. I laughed in the face of preparation. Then it laughed back when I could never find a “the end” in my stories and there were smudges of paint all over my ceiling.
    I think, I plan, I plot. Then I rob the bank. Wait, I mean write the story. πŸ˜‰

  11. I had a slow start today but hope to get into the writing this afternoon. I won the prize yesterday of the critique of the first chapter, so that helps to motivate.

    • Congrats on the critique.

      Not everyday will be full throttle. Besides, you wouldn’t want to tire yourself out too quickly anyway. Speaking from experience, I can tell you it’s not the best feeling in the world. But I’m glad you’re motivated. That’s what we like to hear. Plus, if you ever need a sounding board, you know where to find us. πŸ™‚

  12. Got in 1110 words today, maybe a little more before I call it good. I meet with my local writing group in the morning at B&N Starbucks La Cantera here in San Antonio–if anyone happens to be in the area! We meet for three hours so I plan to get 2000 words in before days end.
    I am so enjoying checking in on the blogs; reading the posts and the comments really make me feel good. I hope everyone has a great weekend!
    Kat

  13. I just got done reading today’s post and comments; have to say I have a split personality as far as being either a pantser or a plotter. I have the barest bones of a sketch of the plot, which I will embellish before I actually start writing. However, I often get the idea for a scene or situation, unaccounted for in the plot sketch, that just needs to be written. Usually, not always, I find a place for it. My official goal is 2000 words a day, shooting for 30-50k words by month’s end. While I haven’t hit that every day, I’ve still sat down with pen, paper or keyboard every day. Pretty good for me! Keep going everyone!
    Kat

    • Hi, Kat.

      Sometimes I get a scene that needs to be written regardless of its sequence in the storyline. It’s unpredictable but it’s also organic. Hope you were able to make 2000 words. If not, tomorrow’s another day. The fact that you’ve committed yourself do write everyday is already a huge step in the right direction. πŸ™‚

  14. Oh Jack…I admit I’ve felt a bit like him this week, lol. πŸ˜‰ Great advice about changing things up creatively.

    Not expecting to get much done on the weekend, with work and other commitments, but I’ll be excited to get right back at it on Monday. Onward, wipsters!

    • Yes, there is life outside of writing, believe it or not. Considering that I’m posting this amidst moving boxes and study notes for an upcoming exam, I’d say I’ve got a full week ahead. πŸ™‚

      As always, every word counts. Happy weekend, nonetheless!

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