Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Insecure Writer's Support Group

So, I'm also part of the Insecure Writer's Support Group started by the awesome Alex J. Cavanaugh. I'm sure you've figured out that I'm pretty insecure with writing at times. What a great way to get some support by posting about your fears and struggles along with your victories and breakthroughs. I will be posting this the first Wednesday of each month.

Let's see. I've been struggling a little with focus. I have two manuscripts that are finished, but need revision work. The problem-- I can't focus on one. I'm torn on which one I want to query. Add a ton of new ideas developing and you have a total brain hurricane. I really want to query this year, but it's looking slim. So what do I do? How do I pick? How do I focus?

On the other end of this, I have to say, I have found the best people on earth to support me. So, I know I'm being guided by the best.

Are you facing any struggles?

How about victories?

Have a great day!

33 comments:

  1. I love the name of this group. :-) It's funny, I'd just read Tahereh's post on not writing scared and was quite encouraged by it. For me it's drafting that gets me jittery rather than revising.

    As to your question--I'd say go ahead and start the new project that excites you. When you hit a wall, pick up one of the earlier projects and reread. Things to revise will pop out more with some distance--and perhaps it will be clearer which MS is your "true love" and your break-in book.

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  2. Christine! It's been forever since I've been to your blog. I love the new look!

    I agree with Laurel. Write what your muse dictates. You'll get back to the other projects when you're ready. :)

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  3. Brain hurricane, I like that. Sounds like what goes on in my head perfectly. I was having focus problems last week but for different reasons. My allergies were bugging me and it was so hard to think about anything other than what felt like a balloon being blown up behind my nose.

    In the end, I stopped fretting over getting lots of writing done and congratulated myself when I picked a few words here and there between long breaks. So I'd say, give yourself a little break, watch a movie and let your mind relax and maybe when you go back, you'll see the answer.

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  4. I would pick which ever one you're more in the mood to tackle and focus on it. It's hard to go back and forth. It's great you have two to choose from!

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  5. Brain hurricane - love that! I understand. I get caught up between the Main WIP I'm trying to revise, and all the other fun ideas I would love to take down rabbit trails for a while . . . but then I want to finish my WIP! So I get back to it, and just scribble notes about my other ideas.

    I hope yo uhave a break through on focus soon!
    Nice meeting you through the Insecure Writers Support Group!

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  6. Too many ideas is actually not too bad of a problem as problems go. I bet if you put both manuscripts away for a week or two, you'll know which one you want to come back to and revise. Good luck!

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  7. Sometimes when focus is an issue w/ me, I just pick one way to go and forcefully direct myself there. After a while it doesn't seem so forced anymore.

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  8. Christine, I know exactly how you feel, well sort of. My agent has one manuscript on submission (and of course I'm worried if any editor will want it). So I revised my next WIP and sent it to my agent. It'll be awhile before I get notes back and we go on submission so of course I went around in circles trying to decide what to work on next, wondering what would be most likely to sell. I got absolutely nowhere. Finally decided to work on what spoke to me the most even though it might not sell. If my heart isn't in it, none of it matters.

    Good luck on your querying!

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  9. Maybe reread them both and see which one excites you? Have critique partners looked at them?
    Send some of your brain storm my way please!

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  10. Go with what you're passionate about. Maybe if some of those new ideas get out of your head, you can return to your other manuscripts refreshed. Good luck and keep writing! :)

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  11. This might sound really dumb but if you can't decide, flip a coin. If you accept the result, you've got the right one. If you try for 'best of three' you should choose the other one :-)

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  12. Flip a coin, edit, and hit send. Then you can work on the others while you wait?
    Good luck and thanks for sharing.
    HMG

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  13. Luxury problem if you ask me. I am struggling get one finished. Put them aside for awhile and see which one calls you back first :)

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  14. That's my brain too. Maybe you need a break from the two. Work on developing one of those ideas for a while, then return to the revisions.

    Hope this helps.

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  15. When I've got a lot of ideas I usually go with the one that's calling me the strongest and re-evaluate it with as neutral an eye as possible to see if it would actually work as a full-length story. Sometimes I try merging different ideas, too.

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  16. Sounds like you love them both, and you know, as soon as you have one querying, you can get on with the next. Here goes. Put MS number 1 in your right hand (heads), MS 2 in your left (tales). I'm just going to flip a coin for you, hang on....just finding one....

    It was heads. There you go, MS one it is:)
    Lxxx

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  17. It seems as though you've already gotten a lot of great ideas on how to choose. I liked Alex's suggestion of reading each one and going with the ms that excites you. But when in doubt, you can't go wrong with flipping a coin.

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  18. For me, it's a gut thing. Which MS feels like the right one to work on? That's the one you work on. Good luck! I've felt this brain frenzy before. It's not fun.

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  19. Trying to get all the projects done is a struggle. I've begun splitting my writing time. X amount of time to this project, X amount to that one. Later in the day to doing Y and Z. It helps.

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  20. *raises hand* I want to be in the club!!! I have two to query too--it IS a gut thing I think!!! xoxo

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  21. I sometimes struggle when I have two things going on which I should concentrate on. Hope you get it figured out.

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  22. I struggle with focus all the time. If only I could get into plotting my novel first then I think that would help.

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  23. I love the phrase "brain hurricane." I agree with a few other folks. Go with whatever you are most excited to work on at the moment. It may change daily, but you're always making progress.

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  24. I am always struggling, but the challenges are so worth it. They make me strive to be a better writer.

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  25. Love the idea of this group.

    I've been there, having to decide between two projects. I found working on one until you need a break works well for giving them both distance at some point.

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  26. I do understand this! Except I struggle between two different tasks-photography and writing. Both need a lot of time and I want to excel at both!

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  27. it's a nice problem to have, two completed manuscripts, even if both need polish. i have been waiting for inspiration for two years to finish a manuscript. i have to have faith that it will come around again on the wheel. i like the name of the writer's group. that title pretty much defines us all:)

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  28. Well... do I have struggles! And victories, but yes, struggles galore! I was the same way for awhile there. I have a series and then another separate book I wanted to edit, revise and submit. But how do I choose? Well, in my case, it was chosen for me. I started revising the one, but could not stop thinking about the other. I felt like I was cheating on my manuscript... So I switched. Sometimes, if you can handle it and juggle them, you can revise and edit both. Get them ready and go!
    I'm a new follower now, thanks to Alex and yes, I'm an insecure writer as well. :D

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  29. Yes! I'm insecure all the time, especially since I switched gears and have moved on to the memoir. Everything seems that much more personal. BUT I do try to push the insecurities aside. Little victories do help...

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  30. Ah, the dreaded focus. I feel your pain.

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  31. Christine, I'm hopping over from the campaign. Zero focus today. I'd call it a mental health day but that would indicate I have mental health today. Snort! Your post was well timed for me.

    Going to keep scrolling for your challenge. I'm #263. You can read it here:
    http://www.carolestlaurent.com/romanceandbeyond/Sherrys_Campaign_Challenges/Sherrys_Campaign_Challenges.html

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  32. Christine! Get them BOTH done! Then you don't have to choose. ;) Or, eenie meenie miney moe?

    Good luck! You're gonna rock it, I know it!

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  33. Whenever I set a deadline, I run into trouble! When you've got at least a couple projects 'done' (that is, ready for revisions and editing) it seems that we just want them to move on and get a life of their own, so we can move onto new imaginary friends). Sure wish I had a solution for you. I guess it doesn't matter which project you pick to work on--the important thing is to just keep writing SOMETHING!

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