“Zipper Fall” release party 3: A bit about writing.

September 22, 2013

I get asked about how I write. People who ask me about writing don’t realize that writing is, mostly, about not procrastinating. Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, WordPress, Tumblr, plus any excuse for online research, can send me off course and into the time-sink of browsing to “see who is there.” On a typical day, I wake up at 5:45, respond to email, clear the dishwasher while the coffee is brewing, fix lunches, and put up a load of laundry. Once I walk my daughter to the bus stop and take the dog around the neighborhood, I am ready to write. In order to do that, I push the power button on our WiFi antenna. Yes, I really do. It keeps my word count up and my needless visits to “see who is there” down to zero.

I am an Organic Writer, which means that creating an outline is a sure way to lose interest in the story. After all, I already know what happened, right? So, why bother writing it out? Sometimes, when I am plagued by distracting and unrelated story lines that pop into my mind, I outline them. It’s the surest way to banish them forever. I have the WiFi turned off for 4 hours in the morning, which usually results in 3-5 thousand words. I take a break every 45 minutes to an hour (switch the laundry, water the plants, feed the koi) to move my body around. After lunch, my writing time will be over for the day, and I’ll need to apply myself to business activities that keep the lights on and the WiFi service turned on. In general, I feel very blessed to be able to do this.

And now, I have a question for you. If you do write, what is your favorite trick to keep distractions to a minimum? Respond, and I’ll enter your name into a drawing for a free copy of Wild Horses or Zipper Fall (Your choice!)

4 Responses to ““Zipper Fall” release party 3: A bit about writing.”

  1. Trix says:

    Outlines work for me; something about setting things in an orderly fashion helps me stay on task. (Of course, this is most helpful with nonfiction…)

  2. Katherine says:

    With paper, a pen in hand and my trusty headphones. And scraps of plot notes on the side. Most of the time I’m really engaged when I’m writing, and I set aside the time for it; usually in the middle of the night, when everyone else in the house is asleep. Sometimes when I can’t write fast enough I would use a word processor on my phone, because I like working on a smaller platform than a PC.

  3. Kate Pavelle says:

    Hi Trix! I used to outline for technical writing, and it worked for me in that respect. Fiction has a different flow, in that it’s almost as though I were reading, except the words are pouring out my fingertips. Dean Wesley Smith calls it working from the “creative voice” as opposed to the “critical voice.” The “critical voice” is what comes in handy for editing. Everybody varies, of course. I think fiction writers who outline have the ability to switch their “creative voice” on and off easier. They can jump from scene to scene, and it just flows. They are amazing. People who write thrillers with tight timelines never cease to amaze me!

  4. Kate Pavelle says:

    Hi Katherine! That works as well! I used to write between 10pm and 1 am when the kids were younger. They had earlier bedtimes, and the elementary school bus came late enough that I still got enough sleep. I had to train myself to be a morning person now that they go to sleep a lot later and have to make the early bus! I can’t focus with all of them around and awake. I know a woman who wrote a whole novel on her phone, since her computer died in a flood. I thought it’s amazing to be able to work on such a small screen and a tiny keyboard!

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