I completed the novella, Hannah’s Hearing about a week ago, and this week it was time to chose a new project.
But which one? They’re all clamouring for my attention all the time. Every silly idea, big or small wants prescidence and as I mentioned last week, I’m feeling entirely overwhelmed by all the work there is to do.
Growing Gills, a book on doing your creative work, by Jessica Abel, was recommended to me by someone at the Sketchbook Skool Facebook group.
Jessica’s book is full of good advice on how to narrow down and do one project–ONLY ONE–in order to focus and complete your work.
Can I stick to just ONE Project?
Snort. Of course I can’t. But I can take all those little ideas, write them down and promise them I’ll get to them in time. (Maybe not, but what do they know?) In the meantime, I’ve chosen one project to focus on.
Some years ago, I started a novel I called The Chronos Project. It is a time travel novel that takes place in 2087 and 1940 Germany. It seemed like an excellent idea, but I couldn’t make it work. It got too complicated and I didn’t have the chops for it. I revisited it a while later, but again, I set it aside for another shiny new idea, or was it because I couldn’t figure out how to end the story? At 120,000 words it didn’t feel as though it was coming to an end any time soon.
This week I pulled that story out again, and I’m reading it, back to front. Yes, weirdness. But I wanted to see it in a new way. I’m finding to my surprise that the writing is good, the story is coherent and has tension. And the idea is still exciting.
So, I made a small plan. As per Jessical Abel’s suggestion, I chose this project, and I will break it down to its small parts. This week and part of next week, I will continue to read the story and make a brief note about each chapter. The next project is to read each pov characters pages in order so that I can see their story arc and find out where I can strengthen them and where they’re story needs to go.
That’s all the plan there is for now. I’ll make more as I come to the end of a goal and am ready to move on to the next.
Oh, and while I’m reading I’m listening to Minor Matter. Do yourself a favour and give them a listen.