PE 14 – Writing, Blogging + Revising

Personal Essay Button I’ll be writing and posting Personal Essays on the last Tuesday of every month. They will be honest, sometimes vivid explorations of my life.

I’m writing them for two reasons: to help put my experiences in perspective and to purge myself of any residual compost.

Since it is good therapy, you are invited to join me, post your link in comments and I’ll be sure to drop by.

Let it begin:

Writing every day has been a personal challenge of mine. I do try, but lately, I’m lucky to write two-three times a week. It comes down to this, I’ll get into something and spend the rest of my free time focused on that one chore. I’ve decided to assign one hour daily to writing, then I can move on to blogging or revising. To me, blogging and revising are a completely different thing.

I pick one day out of the week and spend it writing new posts, visiting and commenting. This system works really well for me; I get my blog post done first, then move on to commenting. Networking has become as important as blogging, and I do my best to visit everyone that comments. If I can find them that is; some commenters don’t have blogs or don’t leave a link. I always try to find them, but if I’ve not visited you please make it easy on me and link back to your blog.

Revising is the one chore that takes up so much of my time. I’m a frigging perfectionist and it drives me wild. I’ll be reading through my work, find a rough patch and start researching approaches on how to improve. That was fine when working on a short story; one or two rough patches can be very manageable, but on longer works it is much more overwhelming. I’ve learned to highlight/comment on the bad bits – being consistent as I am, one error could show up in several places, so one bout of research usually cleans several things at once.

I’ve started another longer fiction, trying my hand at yet another mystery. Quite a while back I started a novella around my heroine. I was reading the Stephanie Plum series and the fun humor leaked into the my writing about Ellie. Ellie is a dumpster diver working for a psychic without any psychic abilities. Ellie is who gets the dirt on the client art quill ink bottlebefore the reading, and this leads to her long list of mysteries.

No matter if I’m blogging, revising, or writing, I’m truly a Sagittarianβ€”point the arrow, shoot and follow it, seeing nothing else. I’m trying to break up my tasks, assigning a day for blogging, and limiting my writing and revising into equal chunks of free time. I’m getting better all the time; in my mind, if nowhere else. Do you have any time management tricks that you’d care to share? I love to hear about them.

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32 responses to “PE 14 – Writing, Blogging + Revising

  1. No time management tricks, still learning myself, however, I am a fellow Sagittarian, lol. I love the premise of the dumpster diver. Can’t wait to read it.

  2. Dumpster diver story sounds like a lot of fun. Psychic too! I bet your one hour of writing spills over into two hours or more with such a fun topic. I have no “schedule’ for blogging/revising/networking, but when I am writing a story or getting an ebook ready to self pub, I usually work on it after lunch. Knowing that I have that appointment for myself, I look forward to it and get my mindset ready to work on it. What one hour of the day do you devote to your writing? Morning, afternoon, evening? Just curious. We all are such individuals when it comes to writing time.
    You’ve visited me at my blog, but to make it easier for you, here’s the link: And thank you for your visits!
    J.Q. Rose blog link http://www.jqrose.com/

    • I work best in the morning, before my mind fills up with life’s little demands. That said, sometimes I’m forced to work later and with much less success.

      Thanks for the link πŸ™‚

  3. I think we can all become that way, I know I have to manage my time or I would never get something done and even though I try to manage everything I need to get done, sometimes the allure of a good read wins out (more often than it should). πŸ˜‰

  4. By your definition, Anna, I haven’t written in a couple of years! I’m spending all my writing time revising, getting my book ready. Sometimes, the revisions are complete scene rewrites. Hmmm, that might count, don’t you think?

  5. You have great goals. I like the idea of dedicating a time to write posts and visit/comment on blogs. And I’m like you when I revise. If a scene isn’t working I search for ways to fix it before I move on to the next chapter.

  6. I hear you about revising! It’s my downfall because it’s ADDICTING. =)

    I’ve had systems in the past that worked–breaking up writing time so it was slotted for the same chunk of hours every day, blogging only at set times, tweeting a specific hours… Of course all of that is out the window as I get closer to having a baby. Can’t quite get the same focus, if you know what I mean.

  7. I will never understand why bloggers in particular don’t update their social media links. I try to hunt them down too but I am sure others don’t

  8. I’m awful at managing my time. Now that I’m on a break from work and classes I read all the time and blog as much. However when I have to work time is never enough. I can’t find the time to read or blog. I’m thinking about making a schedule or a timetable to stay in touch with books.
    Great post
    Ruty @Reading…Dreaming

  9. No tips. I am constantly trying to utilize my time better. My main thing is – I’m trying to get further ahead, so I don’t feel so rushed and can catch up with my backlog. I am doing a little better and think it will get easier over time. I just want to do it all. lol
    sherry @ fundinmental

  10. I think being a perfectionist is a good thing so long as you doesn’t keep you from moving forward. As for finding time to write every day… I hear you!! I had a great routine last fall and then work happened and now I’m back struggling to find the time. I believe it’s our hurdle. So long as our characters keep filling our thoughts, we are writers somehow working on our stories, so there. πŸ˜‰

  11. I have a bad habit of losing time once I start something, so I’ve started using an online timer. I give myself either 15 or 30 minutes, then move on to the next task. I also use an online planner that another blogger put together and that’s been helping keep me on track. Good luck!

    Terri @ Alexia’s Books and Such…

  12. I’ve tried over and over again to write every day but I can’t do it. Writing my blog everyday is enough!

  13. I spend a lot of my time on revisions, too. But not because I’m a perfectionist! My early drafts really need a lot of work. And it always seems like I’m coming across blog posts that give me hints how to make my story even better, and I just have to apply them.

  14. I’m still just blogging and networking with no other writing. I’ve keep intending to add the other writing in my schedule, but actually I don’t have any real schedule as it were and that is one of my biggest mistakes. I know that one thing a writer should do is block out specific writing times and I keep meaning to do that. So many distractions with so little time to fill.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    A Faraway View

  15. I wish I had management tricks, Anna. I admire you. I usually do my blog visits on Mondays, but even that doesn’t always work out. As you can see, this week I’m doing them on Saturday. I love to edit, and editing usually takes priority over writing. Lately, the writing hasn’t come easy. In fact, I think that’s going to be my IWSG topic this week. Haven’t been able to generate words over the past couple of weeks, and I’m not sure why.

    VR Barkowski

  16. I’m a Saggi too, Anna, so I understand perfectly. Sounds like you’ve got a fairly reasonable plan of action to me. Keep it up, girl!

If you're new to writing, ask me anything and if you're experienced, feel free to share what you know. Learning something new in the craft is always welcome.

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