Getting Back Into My Writing Projects: Creating a System That Works for Me

Hello readers! I wanted to talk about a favorite subject of mine that I’ve kind of been silent on lately, and that is my writing projects. If you’ve followed me for a while, you know that a lot of my original content was all about NaNoWriMo and the novels I was working on. Every year I swore to myself that I would finally write that rough draft. Quite honestly, that part of my life got put on hold as I started to focus on my health. Lately, however, being healthy doesn’t seem to need that much effort from me anymore. It’s not work but instead it’s now a habit, which really frees up my mental capacity to allow myself to focus on other things. I’ve been feeling that itch to dive back into writing and have had a bunch of new ideas come sprouting from the depths of my imagination. Needless to say, I am ready to get back into it.

Going Through Old WIP

The saddest part of going through my old projects is dealing with the loss of much of my work. Towards the end of last year, my old laptop finally crashed. I was so confident that the old dinosaur would be around forever and I never backed up any of my work. In a way, it’s good for me in that now I can really start fresh as the ideas never left me. I also got to buy a new laptop, which is exciting. It’s just sad losing all that work. Thankfully, I kept all my character notes and ideas written down in a binder, so I didn’t lose everything, per say. So the first thing I did was go through my files and notebooks and started to reread the material that I had written. Anything that I wasn’t in love with anymore I trashed.

Organizing My WIP

As of right now, I have multiple series ideas and quite a few standalone novels that I have started that I want to pursue. Since the loss of my old files, much of it I will have to start fresh from scratch. I went through and created files to organize them by genre: western romance, fantasy, historical; etc. Not only are they going to be stored on my desktop computer, but I also have an external drive just in case. This is me learning from past mistakes!

Following a Kanban System

I actually got this idea from an author that I’ve subscribed to. Her name is Sara Cannon and she has so much information videos on novel writing on her YouTube channel. I highly recommend checking out her channel. So she goes by a system called kanbanning. We actually use this at work, so it was interesting to see her put it in a writing perspective. She writes much the same way that I like to, with working on multiple books at a time and breaks down the goals for each using a kanban board. A kanban board is a visual board that helps with work flow, minimizes the amount work in process, and maximizes efficiency. Quite often you’ll see this tool used in manufacturing as well as management to help visualize projects and production. So I’ll be setting my board up a little differently than hers, but again I highly encourage you all to check out her video on how she set hers up.

Creating a Schedule

This is going to be the hardest part for me. Again, I want to follow Sara’s way of tracking by quarterly goals. I think that might help me kind of hunker down more on my goals and specific tasks. For instance, in one month what books am I going to be working on? How many words do I want to have on a specific book? Do I need to spend a whole week outlining? Not being a full-time writer, I need to somehow work this into my schedule around school and work and my workouts and family. So this is something that I need to look into and find a way to track it. The hardest part for me with trying to follow someone else’s goals is that I need to remember that I have so much other stuff going on in my life that I can’t just sit in front of a computer every day for a month and pound out a rough draft. So as of right now, finding the time is my biggest hurtle to cross.

My To-Do List Going Forward

Going forward, I have a lot to take away from this and some things I need to work on to keep the ball rolling.

  • decide the books I will be working on
  • create my kanban board
  • create my schedule/goals for Q2 of 2021
  • begin planning my novels

A lot of this will be in preparation for the second quarter of this year, which happens to start with the first round of Camp NaNoWriMo. I’ve yet to decide if I will be participating as of right now. During this whole thing, I plan to keep you all updated on my progress. Not only will this keep me accountable but it might also help motivate any of you that are finding it difficult to find inspiration to write.

Thank you so much for reading and until next time…………

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