Adventures in Writing: Part 13

Hello, hello! I’m back! It’s been a really long time since I’ve done one of these, so if you’re new around here, this series is essentially finding my way through the writing and publishing. I also have tips and advice occasionally.

Today, I’m writing outside, working on Meeting the Star, and I’m stuck on a scene. This is coming from someone who has claimed in the past to not struggle with writer’s block. And I just realized what the issue is…

My writing process has changed.

Last year and the year before, I was able to write whole books so much quicker than I have the past couple. And I think the reason is because I’m writing in order.

In the past, I would finish the first few chapter, create a chapter-by-chapter outline, and then skip to the middle or end. I’d write the more exciting scenes, the ones I looked forward to writing most, and then fill in the build-up chapters.

But so many people kept saying that I made things more complicated and that it’d be quicker to go in order. And subconsciously, I listened.

It started with The Final Chance, but it wasn’t until The Lost Alliance that I really changed my process. I’d been doing it my way, and then 25k words in, I realized the outline wasn’t working. I completely redid it, changing the order and location of the story. I wanted to use as much of what I had already though, so I went in order, meshing things and making sure it fit, and then I just kept going in order to avoid needing to redo the whole thing again if I came up with a different idea.

I’ve been so worried about needing to rewrite a huge portion of a book, and considering other authors’ advice, that I have been writing beginning to end. And it has prolonged everything. I get bored in the beginning or stuck every single time, so without jumping to the parts I’m excited for, I write much slower.

My point:

There’s no one correct way to write a book. There’s not a foolproof method.

Find what works for you. Don’t be afraid to experiment, but also don’t worry about doing it “wrong.” If it’s different than other authors you know or follow, that’s fine!

At the end of the day, all that matters is that you wrote the story.

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