The Evolution of the Writing Process
Updated: Sep 9, 2022
Writing Process of a Young Writer and How to Get Stuff Done!
Hey everyone, today I am coming at you with a post all about my writing process and how it has developed over time. As someone who writes in a routine every day and is trying to produce stories in hopes to one day be traditionally published, discipline conquers motivation at times. And self-doubt creeps up at the most random of times so it is up to the personal process you create for your own needs to help drag you through the slumps and valleys and hills of being a writer.
Personally, I think it is the best hobby to have. To have a passion for writing is on the rare side, especially in today’s world. And to be able to say that writing is your job… a dream.
But of course, it comes with its’ complications. I am not one to be self-centered or make things about me, but this is a blog about my writing process so I guess I will relate this all back to me. I am a full-time college student living away from home and trying to find a job, but I make sure to get in my writing and writing community platforms updated daily. How do I do this?
My writing processes.
For my current writing project, which I am calling Project R, my approach has looked a lot different than for my first draft of the last novel I wrote, which I call Project L. Here’s why.
That last first draft I did was over NaNoWriMo 2021, which was an amazing accomplishment and overall experience. However, I went into it with a blurred vision and by Act 3 I was on the spot changing the entire plot. Not good. But hey, I had the drive in that month that was such a random spark. I completed a 75,000-word draft in thirty days. Yup.
Now I have realized, however, that this year’s NaNoWriMo will be painful because I am going to dive back into that project after a year and start developmental edits. And it will be demolished.
Just thinking about that overwhelms me, but it must be done. What does not overwhelm me, however, is the current story I am working on. And that I because I am working on it with an evolving process so that the first draft has some potential.
For six weeks, I outlined. I drew out scene by scene the story. I worried about the plot not having high enough stakes and the characters not having big enough arcs, but I at least knew the structure. The beginning, the end… the middle. Ish. But what I am saying is that by plotting scenes rather than the story, it did not overwhelm me to start that blank page. And it has not overwhelmed me at all as I enter scene 48. I am in the epidemy of Act 2, the dreadful soggy middle, but thanks to my scene outline, I have the drive to take the story step by step and continue raising the stakes.
And as I have been writing, I have realized some character arcs and deeper thematic concepts in my story.
How did I figure these out? I just wrote. Because as much as I learned about my story by outlining the scenes, you can never truly know your story until it is penned to paper, fingers to keyboard mind vomited. Yup.
And my process is simple. A scene a day. 30 minutes of writing right when I wake up. No word count goal. Just an individual step for each scene. Just a look at the time and telling myself to write until then. It is such a stress reliever to not worry about word count goals. Just write the scene or chapter. Go back and cut or add words later. That is what developmental editing is for.
My route for this project is one scene a day in order to print out the first draft by Halloween day and be able to start the developmental edits on my other project right on the first of November, the start of National Novel Writing Month. This may seem intense, but seriously, one scene a day. It is not bad if you just wake up a little earlier than normal and sit and let that stream of consciousness flow. With direction of an outline of course.
So, my writing process, in summary:
1. Come up with a story idea
2. Start to brainstorm every day different ideas for the story
3. When it has a foundation, begin to outline the random scenes you have thought of
4. Take your time to come up with the scenes, rewrite them as many times as needed with as little or much detail as you feel each one needs
5. AVOID chapters. Yup, don’t think of chapters, just write in scenes, and after the draft is done read through it and group an individual scene or multiple together to form chapters.
6. Take out a monthly spread calendar and write daily or weekly goals. Daily works better for me because I like getting into the nitty gritty.
7. Just write. It’s the first draft, it is not supposed to be anywhere near perfect. It is a hard concept to grasp but even the best of the best say it, I am just relaying it.
As Neil Gaiman says, if you don’t write, nothing happens. So just do the dang thing! The intimidation and fear are taking away your potential and limiting you. It is all in your head. Get over the imposter syndrome, because I have it too, and just remember that everyone must start somewhere. So, you might as well start now.
I hope you enjoyed this post. It was more of a ramble than a direct process, but processes are not concrete, they evolve and change. But just have that foundation of what you want to do each day or week and stick to it! Discipline over motivation. Both are amazing too. But we are in this together, never think this is a one-man job. We got this!
See you next time!
The Livi Chronicles
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