RoW80 Update: Almost Settled.

It’s been almost a month now since I quit working full-time to focus on my writing, and I have to say, I think I’m almost settled into my new work routine. It’s still totally surreal, and I usually feel guilty during the evening because, though I have gotten a lot of work done, it doesn’t feel like I have because I’ve mostly been doing things I enjoy, and it’s not “hard work” that I’m used to. It’s really strange. I like it, but, as someone who has been working service industry jobs steadily for the past thirteen years, it’s still just bizarre to me.

The last two days have been crazy-productive for me, which is great, because my weekend was the opposite of crazy-productive. This was even including Monday, when my roommate had the day off and usually, I can’t get any work done when she’s home because we just end up vegging with some Netflix marathons. But I did it! I got a lot of work done! And, with the exception of having no money in my bank account to back it up, I feel like I’m finally treating it just like a job.

Onto the goals!

Goal One: Soulless: Anyone else think it’s kind of funny that, as soon as I say, “I haven’t been able to edit a chapter a day, so I’m not going to worry about it, and just edit what I can,” I wind up editing a chapter per day, with some time to spare? World, you so silly. But I’m not complaining. Editing has been going great, I actually love some of the scenes, too, but the biggest challenge is going to be the pacing. I like what I’ve got, but not necessarily how I’ve strung it all together.

Let me throw out a quick question. Would you prefer a story that practically leaps right into the action, or would you prefer to have the world developed a little bit more before things get started? I’m trying to decide whether to stick with the pacing as currently written, or to slow down a little to immerse the reader in the world a bit more before getting on with things, and I’d love some perspective from you, dear readers, especially since you’re the ones who will be reading it.

Goal Two: Submitting Stories: “Shadow Wolves” has finally been finished and sent off to a journal (Beneath Ceaseless Skies, to be precise). I’m not sure if it’s a perfect fit for the journal, but that just reminds me of the great job I had in Traverse City, the one I wasn’t remotely qualified for but managed to get anyway, and did a great job and would have been kept on if it weren’t for my move to Illinois. Onto the next one! Hopefully, I can be a little more on track with finishing this one by the personal deadline.

My other daily goals, like working on some other projects or reading, have been put to the side a little to focus on these ones, and the focus works out, so I’m not bovvered. Today’s Wednesday, which means relaxing with the boyfriend, and we’ve decided to go see an early show of Captain America and grab some lunch, so that should be nice, and hopefully, I’ll squeeze in a wee bit of editing before the day is through. Then back to business on Thursday!

How’s everyone else doing? Don’t forget, you can see my fellow RoWers here! Find someone new and cheer them on.

Happy writing, ya’all!



  1. If you love the work you are doing, it just means that this is the right job for you 🙂 As for your question, personally I love world-building, and finding myself immersed in the story through setting and the development of the details of the story. That said, perhaps there is a way to do both? Have rising action with small climaxes throughout? Good job with your goals!

    • It’s so weird, though, because it doesn’t feel like “real work.” I’m slowly getting used to it, though.

      I’m hoping the addition of a chapter should be what the doctor ordered. Just enough to give a little more of the world before things start happening. Thanks for stopping by, Stephanie!

  2. Great post 😀 Glad things are going so well.

    Me, personally, I like stories that jump right in, but I don’t think that’s advised. Setting the scene and the world is usually recommended and for good reason, I guess it gets people to understand the background stuff before chucking them into the story.

    I’m just a very impatient writer and reader, and that’s why I’m keen to start the story from page 1 😀

    • I tend to like jumping straight in; I can’t stand exposition. But I think the most successful stories are the ones that balance both…introducing you to the world AS things happen. That’s ideally what I’d like to achieve. Thanks for the comment!

  3. I’m so jealous! But I’m still happy for you. 🙂

    The only problem with jumping into the action is it’s hard to care about what’s happening to the characters if you haven’t built them up yet. At the same time, you can use a short action scene to tease the readers before launching into the world building. If you do it right, it could work either way. Yeah, I know, I’m not a lot of help. LOL

    • Psh. Always a help, Lauralynn. If anything, you help confirm what I already feel more often than not, and that confirmation is worth a lot. And what you’ve described is exactly what I’ve been feeling as I’m editing. The story is happening, but the characters haven’t quite weaseled their way into the reader’s heart yet, making it seem a little superfluous. Of course, it’s also hard to judge because I know and love these characters already, but the reader won’t have that immediate connection. It’ll take some working, but at least it’s working I won’t mind.

  4. Sounds like you’re recovering from that pesky Puritan work ethic that insists that work can’t be fun. I, too, come from the service industry, and, when I first left the workforce, it wasn’t to write, but to focus on homeschooling when my oldest child reached a school-eligible age. So it was years more ( I think he was about 10), when I gave myself permission to make writing my “job”…

    Only, I don’t call it that, because the words “work” and “job” have so many imposed burdens attached to them. Instead, writing is my default when I’m not busy with something else, the passion that I come back to again and again. It’s my joy and my passion…and you know what? I’ve written a lot more since I adopted that attitude!

    Maybe that’s why your editing suddenly got easier and more pleasant- you stopped trying to meet an obligation, and then found the fun!

    I’m with Lauralynn on the opening. I like to have an action that feeds the story as a whole, but is not high stakes in and of itself. I weave details and themes through it, so that the reader can build a connection with the character and setting while the action unfolds. I am also a huge fan of prologues, because they make good teasers, and when the first chapter starts, people are invested in finding out how the prologue ties in.

    May you continue to enjoy the process of settling in to your new adventure and your new life!)

    • Yeah, that Puritan work ethic is a tough nut to crack. I’m from a Midwestern farm family that’s been doing the hard work thing for nearly 150 years; it’s ingrained deep into my very soul.

      And yay for prologue support! I hear of so many people who think they’re unnecessary, but i disagree so hardcore. Soulless has got a great prologue, if I do say so myself. I am pretty biased, though.

      • I want to put in my two cents worth. I keep hearing you shouldn’t do prologues anymore. (Just like all the other “rules” someone has decided to make up.) But I think prologues can be very helpful. I have them in some of my books, including my latest, Hearts of Evil. The prologue in that one was necessary, in my opinion.

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