Whoopee! It feels good to be moving along in my revision. For day 29 in my unofficial participation of National Novel Writing Month, I finished the new early chapter I had planned in my outline/timeline and moved around some other scenes to fit the better flow I figured out. I feel energized about the story and characters again.
Interestingly, after coming off a couple weeks of on and off writer’s block, mainly because I didn’t know how I was going to fix the middle of the novel, I was reading Sandi Kahn Shelton‘s blog last night and came across a link she had posted to a great post about conquering writer’s block that Caryn Caldwell (a.k.a. The Book Lady) had posted on her blog. Caryn listed 41 ways to get passed writer’s block and back to your story, including everything from No. 11’s “Brainstorm with someone,” to No. 24’s “Take a shower. Do the dishes … Do something that keeps your hands and body occupied and your mind free.”
In getting over my writer’s block, I tried Nos. 5, 10, 11, 21 (minus a few days, but I try to do this anyway, it just gets harder when I’m blocked), 22 (on this blog), 24 (the shower and dishes one), 28, 35, 37 (but I always do this one too, it’s not just a blocked thing for me, I save everything), 38 (but again, that’s something I always do with my writing), 39 (I started a whole new story), 40 and 41. Phew! In the end, for me, the outline/timeline was the perfect exercise for what I needed at the time. It helped me enormously.
Which of these have you used? Got any others to share?
So glad to hear it was helpful! I do the same thing, putting together an outline/timeline. It’s funny how at the beginning of a book I just know how it will all go together, but by the middle it has usually really changed, and I have to step back and plan the second half all over again.
Thanks for the linkage!
My pleasure, Caryn. Thanks again for the wonderful post.
Yeah, that’s exactly what happened with me. In my first draft, I planned out everything, then got off track in the middle. So I just started where I knew the track was heading and figured I’d fix it in the revision. But when it came time to fix it, I got so stuck. Doing a new outline/timeline really really helped.
The same thing happens to me. I find that after about 50 pages, I have to stop and re-evaluate everything, and sometimes the characters change. I don’t think it would be possible for me to write a book straight through in one draft and then go back and do the revisions. I kind of need to revise as I go. I’m rooting for you with your book!