Talk Back: Do you track your writing progress

March 4, 2013

On my Kindle: A Dance with Dragons: A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin

Talk Back – Tell us how you write!

Do you track your writing progress? Experts tend to say that to keep a habit it helps to track it. Do you agree? Or is this obsessiveness getting in the way of your creativity?

I can be quite an obsessive person when I tackle projects and yes I tend to track things. Perhaps too much, which tends to make me worry more about the tracking then the actual project. But some tracking has its use.

I’ve done various form of tracking. I have used a wall calendar to write down my word counts each writing day. That was nice to look at the wall and see how much I was doing each month (and that blank spot guilted me into writing every day).

I also used a running list of word counts with one column for the daily words and the other a cumulative sum of words, which was really motivating.

Now my focus is much more on making sure I spend an hour a day – 6 days a week – on my manuscript so I’ve again changed my tracking method.

My trusty writing tracking bible!

I now have a huge log book that is really pretty and will last me for years. I log each writing session with the date, the type of work I’m doing (writing, editing, polishing) and the time spent on that session.

So far so good. It helps!

How about you? If you track your progress, how do you do it? What works and what haven’t worked? And if you don’t, do you find it easier to just focus on the work?

Please let us know. It’s so nice to hear from you all!

Much love,
Marie-Claude xoxox


Talk back: Is your writing a job or your hobby?

February 25, 2013

On my Kindle: Silk Is For Seduction by Loretta Chase

So today I’m asking you a very simple question: how do you consider your writing, like a job? Or a hobby?

My writing is actually a hobby for me. Shocking? Well there are all kinds of hobby isn’t there? And mine is more of the marathon runner kind instead of the week-end photography kind. I’m pretty obsessive about it and I practice writing every day.

The truth is, it’s when I started writing as a job that all things went pear shape for me…

Because I was so scared of it, it all started as a hobby. But then I joined writers groups where I learned that to be successful I had to treat it like a job. So I did and it worked. I sold my first manuscript to a NY publisher very quickly. And I worked at my writing job daily: 8-10 hours a day. The problem was that even though I worked the hours, the money just wasn’t there. Definitely not enough to support a family of 4 in Seattle in this uncertain economy.

My new job made my family very nervous.

So stress started piling up and words were now preceded with dollar signs and I just lost myself as a writer.

So I went back to school and now have a regular day job. And writing is done before and after work. I tell my family that my writing is my hobby. I do it everyday and very seriously but the “hobby” label make them breathe easier.

I found my happy writing place.

So what is yours? Do you need to treat your writing as a job to get respect at home and motivated? Or has it backfired on you? What is your experience?

Much love,
Marie-Claude xoxox


Talk Back: what is your writing plan?

February 4, 2013

On my Kindle: A Feast for Crows: A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin

Do you have a writing plan? Do you have a good idea of where you are going with your writing? What will you be writing and where will you be submitting your stories next?

It’s been a long time since I have contributed to the blog and it feels so good to be back. I had to step away for a while as I went back to school then found myself a steady job as a science teacher, and kept my writing to just that -writing.

As I come back here, I am very curious to find out more about you all, wonderful readers and members our Musetracks community. I want to know more about your writing and how you survive this crazy endeavor that is stringing words together to delight others and perhaps make a bit of a little living out of it.

So I return here with a new feature to the blog. Please talk back to us by commenting below. I really want to know. Tell us here so we can all learn from each others.

This week I am very curious to know if you have a writing plan. Is it very organized or kind of loose? Do you have a plan A, B and C in case things don’t work out the way you want to? Are you writing your first novel? Your tenth? Are you submitting to New York or small presses? Or perhaps you have a solid self-publishing 5 year plan all laid out for you? Where are you going with this?

Much love,
Marie-Claude xoxox