Starting Something New

Yesterday, a plot bunny jumped right into my head and I decided to start a new piece of creative writing. I’m not sure what it’s going to be– a novel, novella or short story, but I like the idea so much that I can’t let it go (speaking of which, if you’re a writer, you should never let an idea go without writing it down, but more on that later).

This new idea reminded me of the journey we have to go through to actually put something down on a piece of paper. It’s a blank slate. A wealth of ideas that can go in hundreds of different directions, and even more questions that need to be answered. What will the characters be like? What point of view will be used? What will the target audience be? What will the conflict be, where will the climax occur?

You get the point. Starting something new is exciting and scary all at the same time. While it’s awesome to just let my creativity go and write down what comes to me, it’s also a huge undertaking, whether I’m working on a column, a short story, or a full-length novel. There’s so much to think about that sometimes I don’t even know where to start.

There are hundreds of resources out there to help, though. The things that I most like to use are novel writing journals, worksheets to develop plot, and worksheets to create personalities of new characters. They really give me an idea of what can be most important when developing a story, like the motivations of the characters and questions about themes and the overall plot. Answering these questions also jumpstarts my creativity and helps me develop more of the story.

If you’re a writer and you haven’t tried these techniques, I recommend it. Here are some links to resources that I like to use. Click them. Click them now (I’m not being sponsored or anything, I just think they’re great).

The Thirty Day Novel Success Journal

All Indie Writers Novel Planning Tools and Worksheets (Check out the outlining tools and templates)

How to Write a Book in Thirty Days Worksheets (Lots of worksheets for basically everything you can think of)



I Was Published

About a week ago, I was published on an online writing website called Short Fiction Break. Here’s a link if you want to take a look at it; it’s a short excerpt from a piece that I’ve been working on for a while.

I loved writing this piece- I still love writing this piece. I don’t know where it’s going or what I’m going to end up doing with it, but it’s just so fun to write all of the different emotions involved here. It’s heavy- at least, I’d like to think it is. The few comments that I’ve received on the piece have just inspired me to keep writing.

To all the readers out there, commenting on a writer’s piece is probably one of the best things that you can do for them. It’s nerve-wracking sharing something that has been so close to our hearts. To know that people enjoy our writing that we’ve spent so much time and effort agonizing over is just great. But more on that another time.

Once again, check out my piece. I hope you like it 🙂

Writing Different Things

I’ve probably tried writing everything that you can write. News. Short stories. Opinion pieces. Novels (well, unfinished novels). Hell, I’ve even tried writing a screenplay. It didn’t work out to well after I figured out screenwriters don’t really use the “pretty” language that I like to use. But I digress.

To be honest, I couldn’t tell you which form of writing is my favorite. I have my affinities. Things that I think I’m good at- opinion pieces, fiction works. I have my not-so-strong-suits- news stories, poetry. Dear God, I cannot write poetry.

I can’t tell you how happy I am that I at least tried writing things out of my comfort zone, though. If I hadn’t tried writing news, I probably would not have discovered op-ed writing. If I hadn’t tried poetry… well, I wouldn’t know how terrible I am at rhyming schemes or counting syllables for a haiku.

Unfortunately, my attitude doesn’t really help when it comes to finding a job or deciding what I want to study in graduate school. I look at programs for creative writing, English, or publishing and writing and I want to take all of them. I want to learn how to write columns. I want to take fiction writing workshops. I want to take digital publishing classes.

Hey, at least I have options, right?

It’s important to write a bunch of different things, though, because you’ll never know what you’re good at until you try it. You might think that you’d stink at writing news stories, but find out different. You might think you’re like me, poetry-illiterate, but hey, try jotting down a haiku in the notes app on your phone. Just remember: 5-7-5.

I don’t know what I’m going to do with myself or my career in the future. You may not, either. Or you may be stuck in a career track that you’re not sure you want to be stuck in. The important thing, though, is to just keep writing. You’ll figure it out eventually.