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The Writerland Challenge: Week Two Check-in

Okay, challengers! How did Week Two go? Better than week one? Worse? I’ve been cheating, writing no words one day and double the next, and I’m not proud of it. Daily writing is a habit that takes a lot of discipline, and I need to work harder at it. That said, I’m writing a lot more than I would be if I weren’t taking The Writerland Challenge!

For those of who working toward publication, be sure to check out my interview with She Writes Press Publisher Brooke Warner (former editor at Seal Press) and leave a comment to be entered to win a copy of her new book, What’s Your Book? A Step-by-Step Guide to Get You From Inspiration to Published Author.

And if you’re curious to know what some of your co-challengers are working on this month, check out their “Next Big Thing” posts this week.

Next check-in will be Thanksgiving Day! Eat your turkey or Tofurkey and then, before you fall into a tryptophan coma, let us know how Week Three went!

18 comments to The Writerland Challenge: Week Two Check-in

  • Nancy Davis Kho

    The biggest success this week, psychologically speaking, was posting about My New Project on my blog, at Meghan’s invitation- a little terrifying but great and encouraging feedback. Can’t go back now! As for #TTWC goals I finished revising the marketing section of the proposal which I’m actually working on with the help of Brooke Warner. Can’t recommend her work enough- she’s so insightful. Heading out for a family wedding and thanksgiving so won’t be checking in for the next little while- good luck y’all!

  • meghancward

    Congrats on finishing the marketing section of your book proposal, Nancy! And I loved reading about your book. It's so fun to hear what my writer/blogger friends are working on.

  • Jane Moore

    I did so much better this week. I have been writing as planned – 3 hours a day on days I don't work and 500 words on days I do (except after one work day I did none). It is easier if I do it every day, and of course I feel so much better psychologically if I keep my promise to myself. And I find if I'm not so hard on myself for not begining at the exact hour I say I will the night before it goes well too. I'm thinking all my dreams of jumping out of bed at 6, exercising and then sitting right down to writing are just that –dreams. I need to think about choosing to do something rather than should do something. Thanks for starting the challenge, Meghan.

    • meghancward

      Jane – You are my hero! You're writing so much this month. Congratulations. And it sounds like you're keeping up with your goal for the most part. I do think so much of this is about how we react when we don't meet our goals – do we lie about it? Do we beat ourselves up over it? Or do we just move on to the next day and try harder?

  • lindseycrittenden

    I missed check-in last week, so I'll cover both weeks here. Was happy to get in four visits to my outside writing space last week–each for 3 hours–and make some headway. This week, due to some unusual alterations to my schedule, I had to wing it. Writing needs habit and consistency, but I had to give myself permission to break from the usual to give a talk yesterday at 10:30 a.m. (sacrosanct morning writing time, but this was a paying gig). Today I'm going to a "graduation" ceremony at San Quentin, for men who have worked hard to adjust violent behavior and tackle demons and confront past choices. So, I "wung it" by going to my outside office for shorter visits — only an hour yesterday. But I've found, as I'm revising my novel, I need to keep the continuity even if it's not for the longer chunks of time I'd prefer. The challenge has helped me get myself across town to do what's necessary.

    • meghancward

      Lindsey, that's great that you did 12 hours the first week, and life always gets in the way at some point. I think the key is to not let it derail us long-term and just push to get back to that 12-hour workweek the following week. Anyway, you're doing great! I'm heading over to your blog to read about your WIP in a few minutes.

  • Maia

    I got another draft of my chapter done. Going to do one more of this one in the coming week and spend the last week of #TTWC developing a draft of a new chapter. I sent out two pieces, so I'm behind on that. Want to get five more out this week.

    I do think daily writing is ideal, but I think I'm okay with having big days and little days. I've taught myself to snatch time here and there when I have it, so there's some continuity with my work even on days when I've only got thirty extra minutes.

    And now I am back to work…

    • meghancward

      Congrats on getting another draft of your chapter done! How is your chapter going this week so far? (Today is Tuesday already.)

      I have a hard time with daily writing, too. I feel I'm almost more productive when I write every two or three days. I'd rather be really productive one day and not write the next than write 300 words of dribble every day just to meet my goal. That said, I'm going to keep aiming for a daily goal.

      • Maia

        Just started working on a new draft today. The last few sessions have been spent on the sending out part of my goal which has meant some revisions to another piece I want to submit to a couple places. I think the daily practice is a good thing to try for, even if it looks a bit messy sometimes. It feels good. I usually devote about 16 hours a week to writing and I allow myself to use some of that time for revising and submitting work. (The agent I'm working with wants me to have some more publications under my belt before we try to sell this manuscript, so that's why the big push.)

        • meghancward

          I agree that daily writing is a good goal. I figure if I miss two days, I've still written five days in a week. If my goal is to write 3 times a week, and I miss two days, I've only written once that week.

  • I was a slave to crying babies this week, so I didn't get as much done. However, I did make a major decision at the end of last week to make a fundamental (and thus, very large) change to the whole ms. So my goal has changed now. It is to complete the change by the end of November. That is going to be a bit hard but my daily goal is 3-4 chapters of the change.

    I really shouldn't be changing my goals every week like this, but I have to say, I'm on a course that I am really, really happy about.

    • meghancward

      Sierra – Congratulations on being on a course that you're happy about. That's key. And 3-4 chapters a week (I'm assuming this is a POV or tense change?) is a lot. I know you can do it by the end of November!

  • This is only my first week since I started late, but I'm happy to report that I rewrote a chapter of my memoir into a standalone essay this week. I submitted it to a magazine and already got revision suggestions back from the editor, so that's what I'm working on next week.

    • meghancward

      Congratulations on submitting your essay to a magazine already, Annette! Good luck on the revision this week and let us know if the magazine publishes it!

  • Melina

    I wrote every weekday! It is very exciting. I'm on schedule so I am going to take Thanksgiving off. 🙂

    • meghancward

      Melina, Congratulations! I have a lot of plans this weekend, so it's going to be tough to write every day, but I'm going to try since my goal of 300 wds is pretty reasonable.