Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Don't Underestimate What You can Get Done In Your Lunch Hour

The other day, on my way to work, I reworked the illness of my main character’s mother and ironed out all the details that would affect plot line following. Before I knew it, I was at my turn off. I counted it as writing time. Because I know that this pre-work is what makes sitting down to write in a structured early morning session work.
When I started writing novels, each chapter was a page and they were housed in duo-tangs. Because when you’re seven year old writer, that’s how you roll. The main difference between my writing then and now is in the keyboard practice and schedule.
Sometimes aspiring writers get hung up on the fact that living adult life takes a lot of time – the working & raising a family obligations that cannot be shoved aside for leisurely days of writing. But this is not a new thing.
At seven, you can’t write while you’re at school, but you can run home and write in your orange duo-tang instead of heading to the park.
When you are in the child rearing trenches, you can’t write while changing diapers; but at naptime, you can sit down and work on your story instead of scrubbing the house.
When you have a day job (or two), you can’t write while commuting, but you can give your writing your lunch-hour instead of meeting a friend for lunch or get up early and write before doing anything else.
I am thrilled to work a seven year old novelist into my summer writing project. I have fond memories of my own orange duo-tang.
If you want to connect with other writers or get feedback on your project, put the 2016 Writer’s Weekend on your calendar (Oct 21-23 in beautiful Hope, BC) For more information email michelle.vandepol@ufv.ca or everydaywritingcoach@gmail.com

Sunday, January 03, 2016

Books You Jump Out of Bed For

 holiday is also good for getting thrifting in -- 75 cent hammered silver cup my latest find.

If you are the kind of reader to have several books on the go at the same time, you are likely the kind of writer to do the same with your novels in progress.

So even though I have a few books I really should finish, I had to jump out of bed and write out the newest that came to me in a big chunk while trying to fall asleep last night: title, plot, sub-plot, main character, and even cover design. Time off work is good for the creative soul.

What writing hot looks like this morning: one fourth of a chapter in 30 minutes. At that rate, it would take 1 work week to get to first draft. But given that most of my writing is done cold (making oneself sit down and get to fleshing out the next scene) it will likely occur within scheduled early morning sessions before my daily walk. Even at that optimistic production rate, this means 100 days until draft completion. I think I have my 2016 project before me.

If you have a writing question or want some feedback on your 2016 writing project, email me at everydaywritingcoach@gmail.com

Saturday, October 17, 2015


It's that weekend again.
Writing fires have been lit, both literally & figuratively.
We have camped out until it's time to come back to the real world.
But first we will have our notebooks, and laptops, and endless cups of tea...

Here's what the weekend is all about

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

A Big Fat Newsletter, Cheap Eats Advice, and What to do with those Scraps of Paper Lying Around

It's been a bit since I last posted.
I confess, I've been letting instagram get the best of my day to day. (it's hard not to -- the whole family including my grandma is on there so it's like visiting with them all day long)
My account doesn't get to be the charming hour by hour play by play my sister raising two kids under 2 manages -- my teenagers would definitely not be ok with me following them around for the shots ;) but it'll still be an overshare of what I'm reading, what color polish I'm wearing, and what last food D has cooked up for us. (all riveting, I know ;)

My everydaywritingcoach readers will be happy to know that they will be getting a twice-as-thick summer newsletter for July & August this week. (If you want to sign up simply email everydaywritingcoach@gmail.com You can send your writing questions there as well.)

I am also happy to share this blogger with you. If you are interested in eating real food, buying local, and spending very little money doing it (she feeds a family of 4 on $330 per month), you will want to check her blog out as well.

I'm off to release that newsletter and corral my scraps of paper notes into the summer manuscript.
Will keep you posted.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

the important things

A bit of what I've been up to.
The day job has wrapped up for the summer.
Which means the backburner projects have my undivided attention.
(when I am not being distracted by the important things -- see above)
I'm heading to bed early in order to wake up for an early writing session tomorrow.
If you are looking for a writing community or some inspiration, make sure you are signed up to receive the everyday writing coach newsletter -- everydaywritingcoach@gmail.com

Thursday, April 30, 2015

How to Fit your Writing into Life and Other Concerns

images courtesy of morguefile.com (which is more helpful and less morbid than you'd think)

It's that conference time of year. Which means while I am presenting tommorow (on the query letter -- the key to getting your work into magazines) and attending sessions; I am also free of the second shift and rooming with another rabid writer, so after my essential 7 hours sleep, I'm switch-hitting writing projects like nobody's business. (it's the excitement, I think)
D has already texted the everything's going well/have a great day/all's clear this morning. (which I didn't realize I needed until he sent it.) Here's to stealing writing time.

If you're a writer with questions about carving out writing time more regularly or with technical questions about the craft, email everydaywritingcoach@gmail.com for the answers.

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