Dawn Colclasure's Blog

Author and poet Dawn Colclasure

Thursday, February 11, 2016

An update on my writing challenges

Last month, very shortly after the new year began, I decided upon two new writing challenges. I know, with most yearly writing challenges, writers usually have just one. But, for me, I ended up with two.

The first challenge – to write a page every day of the year for a novel – was something which I began on January 1st. Alas, it came to an end on January 21st. Not long after I sat down to write my page for that day did my son injure his hand and broke a bone. It was a very bad injury and he was in a lot of pain. I had to be with him! So I stopped writing to take care of him. It was not until after midnight that I got a break from caring for him and at that point, I was too worn out to do any further writing. So, the page-a-day challenge was interrupted. And even though I was at 25 pages at that point (some pages had gone over one page because of chapter endings), I decided not to proceed with that one. It was all or nothing! So I ditched it. Perhaps some other year I will try that challenge again.

The second challenge, however, is still alive and well. My second challenge was to write a short story for every week of 2016. I began this challenge on January 4th and so far I have completed a short story for every week since then. I am in the process of wrapping up this week’s short story – my 6th so far.

However, it would now seem that a new writing challenge has been thrown my way. Well, my new writing challenge for 2016 is, it would seem, to work on 11 books at the same time. That’s right: I am currently writing and revising 11 books all at once. (Writing 10 and revising 1 – a novel.) One of the books I am writing is the novel that I began writing this year. Yes, I have decided to finish writing it, because I don't want an unfinished book languishing on my hard drive. Another novel is one I am collaborating on with a friend. So, I am writing more than one novel this year, and at the same time too! (In addition to one other one!) This has been an interesting challenge for me because in the past, I NEVER worked on more than one novel at a time. I always felt it would be too difficult to be able to stay on track with more than one fictional world at one time. But miraculously, I have been able to do so. This week, I started working on my books with a new approach of writing them. So far, it is going well. And I’ll be blogging about that approach this weekend.

So now my two writing challenges for 2016 are to write a short story every week and to work on 11 books at one time. (Additionally, I am revising 1 other book, but that does not involve the creative process because it’s nonfiction so it’s not really an issue worth bringing up.)

Looks like I have a lot of writing to look forward to this year. It has been very interesting so far. I am glad that one of the original challenges is still going strong and I look forward to finding out where the other one will lead me.

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