Weeknotes – S07E20 – Seven Days of Progress


A seven-day writing/editing week! The novel is still on track and there’s a lot of other good stuff going on, though my paid projects are all coming to an end, so I’m in panic-pitching mode, which is my least favourite part of the freelance cycle.



I was up and ready to get started by 8am. The details of the next Darkness scene came to me during my morning meditation practice so I did my traditional ‘frog-eating’ to begin the day and wrote that.

My client projects for the day were finishing editing the social skills book, editing the next section of the yoga novel, editing the next section of the sailing memoir and commenting on the next few chapters of the fantasy romance – so a fun and interesting mix!

I also wrote my GYWO discussion post for the month.



I had a pretty long list of stuff to work on today, so I settled in and decided to see how far I could get.

I started out by reviewing a computer game I’d finished the night before, then wrote the first Darkness scene of the day, which went better than I expected, since it was a bit of a filler.

My client work for the day was a mixture of the sailing memoir, the yoga novel, the prison officer memoir and the fantasy romance.

I also wrote a second Darkness scene (to keep to my new schedule, aiming to be able to finish the first draft on retreat in Devon at the end of June).



I added an entry to Her Odyssey, which I’d been neglecting.



Someone posted a submission opportunity on the TL;DR Slack and I had a story that fit, so I submitted it. 

I also finished an audiobook and wrote my review.

Later, I tracked all my outstanding submissions, updated my spreadsheet and submissions folder, and sought out a few new places to send some old stories. 



Once I was ready to start ‘work’ for the day, I just faffed around for ages, working out how long each of the remaining Darkness scenes needs to be to reach the word count I’m aiming for, and also how few scenes I can get away with completing each week and still finish the first draft on retreat at the end of June! It was a masterclass in procrastination and excuses not to do any writing today…

Eventually, I pulled myself together and just got on with the next scene, as I really do want to keep to my current plan of only having five scenes left to complete on retreat – not least because I also want time there to work on my novella revision plan and perhaps start the new depth and restructure pass for Legacy.

Halfway through writing today’s scene, though, I had a moment of inspiration about something I should change in the plot, which would make the stakes much higher, give a much better reason for the protagonist’s to identify and be invested in their quest, and add more intrigue to the mythos of the world. This was awesome in one way, since the book will be stronger once I make the changes, but not in another – since it will mean some careful restructuring and additional material added earlier on.

On the client front, I finished editing the yoga novel and also commenting on the fantasy romance.

After lunch, I went back to Darkness and did the relevant changes to incorporate the new plot point, as I realised they weren’t as extensive as I’d feared.

I also did some more submissions.

Later, I thought some more about not wanting to write my novel, even though I have a really solid outline and each scene flows really well and takes less than an hour when I actually get going. And I remembered an awesome course I did with Charlie from Urban Writers’ Retreat a couple of years ago. It was called This Is Not A Course About Writing (or TINACAW) and it was all about digging deep inside to identify and remove obstacles to getting on with your writing. I came across it again yesterday when updating all my passwords – and discovered I still have access to all the online materials. So, I decided to go through it again – and started this evening with the introduction pdf and the welcome video.



It was my day off, so of course the subconscious crew were clamouring at me with team story ideas at 5am. In their defence, I did ask them to do that just before I went to bed, but I also specified that they shouldn’t offer anything before 8am… Ah, well – I’ll take it! So, I got up and added the next paragraph to the story.

I also took the opportunity to do some more of the TINACAW course.



Some queries came through on a manuscript from my most meticulous editing client, so I reviewed and addressed them.

I also did some more of the TINACAW course and went through the notes for one of my future novel ideas, as Dave had expressed interest in discussing it.

The discussion went very much better than I anticipated, sparking lots of new ideas for a novel I wasn’t really ever planning to write! I made quite a few notes and added them to the folder with the novel idea in it (which is 15 on my list, of which my current work-in-progress is 5…) and shared the whole folder with Dave, in case he wants to take the idea any further on his own.


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