Monday, August 19, 2013

Level 6: TGFMS (Thank G-d for Magic Spreadsheet!)

So, I've written about the Magic Spreadsheet before.  It's a simple concept.  You commit to a minimum daily word count (level one is 250 words) and record your words in a spreadsheet where other writers do the same.

After taking four years to complete a first draft of a novel, I was becoming desperate to find a way to write more.  I have plenty of obstacles and challenges to that goal, starting with two children and a teaching career.  But I wasn't willing to let writing be that someday thing anymore.

So, in March, I found a mention of the Magic Spreadsheet somewhere in my Google+ feed.  I was curious and looked it up. They had a group on Facebook.  I joined.  I started tapping out my 250 words every day.  It was a revolution.

First, I noticed the difference in what I could do with a brief writing session. Since I was writing every day, I no longer needed thirty minutes or more to "get back up to speed" by reading what I had previously written and shuffling through notes.  I was already in the flow.  Between writing daily and taking a piece of advice from James Maxey to stop writing each session before the well runs dry (where you have a good starting place for the next day), I was flying.

It didn't take long to level up. Now I was shooting for 300 words a day, then 350, then 400, then 450. And now, ta-da!, 500 words a day.

Over summer, I could get my daily words pretty easily.  My days were mine to structure. I often wrote 2000 words a day.  I know that may change now that I have to add teaching back into my life-work balance sheet, but even if I can't keep up 500 words a day, I know I'm an addict now. I'll keep writing every day.

Because you know what? I finished the rewrite of my first novel.  Then, I finished the first draft of my second novel.  Now, I'm working on the rewrite of that second novel.  I have three new ideas for novels percolating that I'm making notes for.  I'm more productive in my writing than I have ever been in my life, even when I was twenty-two, mortgageless and childless. 

My ideas are making it to fruition.  One day a time, a few hundred words in a chunk. It adds up fast. And equals one girl who isn't going to write someday anymore. I'm writing now.

No comments:

Post a Comment