Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Love of Post-its and Other Randomness

"When you write a story, you're telling yourself the story. When you rewrite, your main job is taking out all the things that are not the story." - Stephen King, On Writing

In the land of rewrites, I decided that I was going to chuck my original outline and reoutline. Is that a word? Well, it is now. I have the book written. Complete. But not finished. It's not working. The rewrites aren't work. The main story rocks. The bits around it? Wobbly bits. I've been trudging along and now I've realized that I need to tell myself the story again. Just to be sure I've got it right.

How much do we love post-its? Tomorrow's agenda will be to write a short summary for each chapter on a post-it. Toss the post-its that aren't necessary. Then start a new outline. We'll see how that works for me. Maybe it won't. I'll let you know if it ends up being some brilliant new way of rewriting so you all can get in on it.

Have you ever tossed a good bit of your book and started over or around or through it? I'll probably end up saving half of it in a document on the desktop never to be seen by anyone's eyes again but me. That's okay. I'll be getting rid of the parts that are not the story.

I need to get my behind in gear because November is fast approaching. November means NaNoWriMo. NaNo means brand spanking idea!

Bits of Randomness:

Are you doing NaNo? If you are, add me as a writing buddy (Jennie Bailey). Let's do this together!

Meredith is having her FIRST contest ever - and it's a GREAT one. Even though I really want to win the copy of HALO by Alexandra Adornetto, I'm letting you in on the contest because I love you all too much not to. And maybe you'll send it to me when you're done reading it! Enter here. Also, you need to be following her blog, if you aren't already. Fairy Tales and Cappuccino - I just heart that name!!

KILLER CHICKS is having one KILLER contest - 3 separate contests with prizes totaling $100! Gift cards galore. If you haven't checked out their blog, you're really missing out. Hop on over there and enter the contest while you're at it!

Are you having a contest? Let me know and I'll add you to my SIDEBAR!

Cuteness of the day: As I was leaving a kinder classroom after teaching Dog Bite Prevention, a little girl said to me in a very tiny voice, "Ms. Jennifer, my heart is breaking. I'm going to miss you and Cooper so much!"

It's okay, you can melt. I did.


  1. AWE the little girl is adorable!

    Your post it note idea sounds like a stroke of brilliance. Good luck!

  2. My heart is breaking, reading that little bit.
    You ares surrounded by adorableness.

    I'm so happy for you. You're getting there. So close to a finished ms.

    I'm reworking mine. But I feel good about it. I like this version better. I think this might just be what I've wanted to write all along.


  3. Are we buddies on NaNo yet??? I'm Jen_Unedited just incase you get there first to add me!!!

    Yay for you making progress! Much more than I can say! I love your post-it idea! I call them my post-it revisions and they REALLY help! Also tracking things on a whiteboard really helped me as well!

    Good Luck!

  4. Post it notes are awesome in general, but now they are even more amazing! And they come in so many colors so a different colored post it could be for a different story.

    I'm contemplating Nano, so I might have to go add you!

    And thanks for the words of wisdom about switching my major concentration. I came to the realization that grad school is both a delay of reality, but it's also what I need in order to really know what I want to do. I can always go back to education and besides, isn't it a little crazy to think about graduating college at 22 and going out to teach highschoolers? I'm barely older than they are!

  5. aaww that is so sweet.
    Let me know if this works for you because I hate editing - have i said this before?
    Anyways am nanoing too for the first time ever I shall begin to add friends as soon as i figure it out.

  6. Hey Jennie! Yes, I chucked 99% of the original concept for my book and completely rewrote it.

  7. Thanks so much for mentioning my contest! So sweet of you. I haven't tried the post-it method before, but it sounds like such a good idea. I always have to throw away and rewrite chunks of my manuscript while revising, and post-its would make everything easier to see. I hope it goes well!

  8. AWE! Cute!!

    Let us know how the post it thing goes. I'm addicted to post its but never thought of trying that out! Be interested to know.

    Thanks for all the linkies to contests!

    When I sign up for NaNo(eventually) I will def. have to be-buddy you. Will need it!

  9. Aw, MELTING! :)
    1) I tossed the entire middle of my book. Many thousands of words. I'm almost done rewriting them - and I *did* save it to a file marked "outtakes" in my chapters folder so my word count didn't seem to go down. Somehow that made it easier. ;)
    2) I want to do Nano some year, but this is not my year - I'll be doing final revisions on this current book and hopefully querying - definitely not ready to dive back into first drafting, but I'll be with you in spirit. :)

  10. Wow, that is such a hard step to take, but can be the best thing for your mss. Good luck with it!

    Thank you for your comment today, btw. WOW, you truly blew me away. I'm so, so glad my posts have been that meaningful to someone. It helps me feel like taking the time to do my blog is worth it. Thank you so much!!

  11. 1. I totally melted, Miss Jennifer! :)

    2. Thanks for the contest shout-out. You rock.

    3. Post-its rule my life. I once ran out of post-its and PANICKED.

    4. Lisa Gardner, NYT bestselling thriller author, uses hundreds of post-its during her revisions... so that tells me that you are destined to be a NYT bestselling author too!

  12. A lot seemingly not the story is still the story. Many misunderstand this. I usually add a lot in the reread, not removing much. The pieces not fitting in I've already removed in my head before committing it to "paper".

  13. I do love my post-its, and it sounds like a lot of other writers do too!

    I have scrapped about 20,000 words of the last book I attempted...and now am too depressed to look at until the new year lol. It happens.

    I'm doing NaNo too! I'll look you up :)

  14. I'm so glad you are doing NaNo! I added you as a writing buddy. :)

    Can't wait until November 1st!

  15. I can only envy you because you're at the rewrite/reoutline stage. I can't wait to get there!!! I'm doing the NaNo and going to buddy you up right after this post. Buddy you up....that sounds kinda hinky, huh.....

  16. Post Its are a good idea! I've taken out parts of my book- the big parts go into a word document of discards, and then just small things get deleted.

    Not doing NaNO this year :( I HAVE to finish my book. I'm sort of using NaNo to inspire me to finish. I guess I could still sign up.