Celebrating Progress, Planning Ahead, and Challenging Yourself

Over this past weekend I finished writing January’s short story. Now the man/fellow writer of the house will read it, give his feedback, help me to catch any errors, and show me how to format it for Amazon. I’m pretty excited that the first story of the year will be “on schedule” such as it is. Makes things so much easier to maintain when you start off with a bang.

I very much enjoyed writing this story, which I’ve retitled to Beneath the Winter Weeds. I can’t say that each story will be set in time during the month in which it is written (and certainly for many stories, it will not matter so much when they happen) but it was a fun challenge to write a story that felt immediate.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERANow then, how am I deciding what to write about when? If I plan for a story to take place during a particular time of year, that is when it will come to life. I know one is in early spring and a couple are set in summer. Beyond that, I know some stories will have female protagonists and some male, and as much as possible I would like to switch back and forth between those so that people don’t feel I write for women exclusively. So both of these elements have helped me arrange my thoughts on which story to put my focus on next.

I have also already mocked up covers for nine of the twelve. For most of these, I have an image and a title and little else in terms of notes on what these stories will be about. I think it will be a fun challenge to approach story creation this way and to see how the title and cover may change as the story develops. For those not yet mocked up, I have particular images I want to capture (all covers will have my own photos on them) but I have to wait until the snow is gone and then go to a couple particular places to take the photos I envision.

Thanks for coming with me on this year-long writing experiment! I hope you’re thinking some creative thoughts of your own. Whether you write novels, short stories, poems, or just in your journal, why not give yourself some creative challenges to have fun with? Try coming up with a title and perhaps an image, then write to that. See what comes out. If you have trouble getting started, try a book like The Pocket Muse or its sequel for some writing prompts.

Happy writing!