A writing maxim I just discovered, editing a piece this evening:
If a word, phrase, or sentence is giving you trouble and you can’t figure out how to fix it no matter how many times you look at the blasted thing…
Now, I’ll figure out how to condense it down into something more pithy-sounding.
I was challenged to write something first thing upon waking up every morning, for the past week. (In the 500 or less wordcount range.) I decided to write a mini-serial (Continuous Coast) story in five parts, attempting to write one part each day. I then decided to experiment with some innovative revising/editing angles, since the CC project has definitely expanded the ways in which my writer and editor brains have to work together in real-time to produce quality story product. (I also practiced a couple of technical writer things I needed to work on; never let a story do one thing when it can do four, I say.)
I created a pipeline writing and editing production line, where I wrote the first few parts, then continued writing parts while I revised and started posting the first sections in our Back of House forum for review and further peer editing. Each day I continued to write, edit, and post; when I finished all five pieces (which took 6 days instead of 5, part 4 was written over two days) I went back and revised the first part based on received recommendations, and readied it for publishing on ContinuousCoast.com, where it will be within the next day or two. That process will continue until all five parts are published on CC.
This was really fun and feels quite successful, though I suspect the format would not work for all types of story. It works very well for the sort of quick-time story that is particularly well-suited for the immersive ARF that is the world of Continuous Coast. I’d definitely be up for trying it again, though I suspect that next I’ll be coming up with something else to experiment with.
Keep watch on the IRC chat, Twitter feed, and Voices blog for supplementary material around the story release. Enjoy!
It’s been far too long, but I realized that if I was going to keep working on Continuous Coast it was worth putting at least a tiny bit of maintenance into my personal site as well. So to start 2009 off right, I updated the “My Writing” section to include links to the various CC sites currently active (I also just had a CC story go up on the site, whee!), though Kit made a couple of suggestions for reorganizing the categories that I’ll probably re-do within the next day or two, so check back!
I thought it might be good to start putting up some of my own, non-CC work here as well, so I included links to two flash fiction pieces that I’ve had out circulating for over a year. I decided to retire them from circulation and just post them here. My writing has changed and improved enough over the past year that these pieces may not be exactly indicative of where I’m at now, but I still enjoy the heck out of both of them (at least in a writing sense; “Rorrim” in particular is a bit uncomfortable to actually read) and would rather share them and concentrate on writing and sending out more new pieces. Though, if I don’t get some more cheerful free fic up here soon, people might start to get a skewed notion of my style…
Still obviously learning the finer touches of my Phone of Awesomeness, but here’s the cover of my copy of the anthology with my first pro story sale! (Click on the picture to see the full-size version.)