My Writing Process

5 comments

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Thank you, Jane, for tagging me in what looks like another super fun writing tag! Jane posts about reading and writing, and her style is super rad! She is currently working on a horror novel called Collected, which is set for release this year. Follow her for updates, writing tips, and book talk!

Read on for answers on my writing process!


01. What genres do you write?

My favorite genre to write is horror, although I also write fantasy, scifi, and non-fiction. For some reason, my brain is just wired to understand how horror works more than any other genre. Stay tuned for my post on how to write convincingly scary horror!

02. What setting gets you the most productive?

Sitting/laying/sprawling on my bed with my twinkle lights on, door locked, and steaming cup of forgotten tea growing cold on my nightstand.

03. If you have multiple story ideas, how do you go about picking which one to start on first?

I write on what I feel inspired to write at that time. That’s why I have several different stories going at once. I can jump between genres. It’s a process getting into the mindset to write on my high fantasy story, for example, and sometimes it’s much easier to sink into the horror mindset. In which case, I will work on my horror instead.

04. Do you outline?

I try to outline, but I seldom follow it, and find that I often cannot think of an ending until I start actually writing the story. So my outline usually ends with “?????”

05. Do you start your first draft with pen and paper, typewriter, or computer?

Computer. Always. The only handwritten notes I have are when I don’t have my computer around me and I jot things down on post-its and random scraps of paper. I also have a notebook for story notes, but I keep that beside my computer as I go so I can keep track of key points. I don’t write my first draft in there.

06. What do you do to get through writer’s block?

HAHA. I don’t. Writer’s block is impenetrable. So if something isn’t working for me, I will try working on something else instead. Writer’s block seldom spreads across all my stories. If I can’t write in one genre, switching to another usually helps. And when all else fails I just free write and see what comes out.

07. Do you format your project from the beginning or worry about that later?

I absolutely do. The way I type it out is usually how it stays, because I know the way I want it formatted from the beginning.

08. Do you edit as you go or when you’re finished with the first draft?

I edit as I go. So when I get to the editing process, the only thing I really need to do is use text to speech to catch the straggler grammar errors, and cut and paste sections in my oh so favorite part of the process; switching around the plot so it makes sense.

09. After finishing your drafts/manuscript how long do you give it a break before you start going back over it or do you give it a break at all?

I will let it sit there for 6 months to a year. I want that story to be well gone from my mind. I want to forget it exists. And this gives me enough time to leave that mindset that I was in when I wrote it. Looking at it with different eyes and mindsets tends to work well for me.

10. Is there something that you prefer to do to get you through writing? (Playing music, tv, having your favorite drink, or food)

The most productive times for me are when there is silence and no distractions. Even if I make a drink like tea, I will often forget it as I get into my writing. But when I do feel like having some background noise, my favorite music to listen to is vaporwave. The driving beat puts me into a sort of trance that completely distracts my mind from outside thoughts so I can focus on writing.

11. Do you schedule your writing sessions?

Not particularly, although I try to write in the morning or evening when I’ve completed all my tasks or before my day starts. It depends on my work schedule, as I work early some days and late others.

12. Do you have word count or chapter goals for your writing sessions?

I do not. I feel like that’s when you get into the dreaded forcing of words, and that leads to bad writing. If I have inspiration to write only a sentence, then that’s all that gets written for that day. I know Stephen King wrote 2000 words per session, and that’s great. Sometimes I do that, like for NaNoWriMo. But generally I like to wait until the thoughts are ready to come out. You can sit at your computer and type nine pages of utter shite just to get your word count, or you can write a small amount one day but get 17 pages another day because you are ready to formulate those thoughts into words.

13. Are there any quirky things you do to make your projects more fun?

I like creating pinterest boards for inspiration. I also use tumblr to reblog posts and quotes that relate to my story. That way if I need a boost of inspiration, I can go there and soak up all those images and words and use it as fuel to keep me going. I also make playlists for my stories!

14. Do you work on multiple projects at one time?

Oh yeah. I have about five stories going right now. As mentioned before, I write on the ones I feel inspired to at the time.

15. How often do you research what you’re writing?

Often. I will look up word meanings, historic events, scientific processes…my browser history is weird.

16. How do you organize your projects?

I don’t. My “Documents” folder is just filled with oddly named files and all the stories are mixed in together. It does get confusing at times, and I often can’t find what I’m looking for. It’s a problem. I should really organize my folder better.

17. Do you reward or punish yourself for achieving or missing out on your writing goals?

Since I don’t have writing goals, no I do not. However, when I do finish something, I will reward myself. It’s very hard to finish something, let alone a full novel, so when it happens, it’s ok to treat yo’ self.

18. Are there any works similar to your projects that you look for and use – for inspiration and/or comparison?

I am always inspired by Resident Evil, Hannibal Lecter, and Final Fantasy. They are so unique and well developed that nothing else is like them. I also am very inspired by old horror movies.

19. How early do you wait to start looking for and hiring editors?

I’ve never had an editor. So far I’m a new writer and have not really delved into publishing. I have one short story published, but I had a friend edit for me for free.

20. If you’ve finished a first draft or a manuscript. Tell us how you felt afterwards. (Pick your favorite) If you’re not through the first draft yet tell us how you’re feeling about it at the moment.

I felt so freaking accomplished. I added it to my list of accomplishments, but the celebration didn’t last long before I delved back into writing my second. I don’t really let myself bask in the good feelings too long. Gotta keep working.

21. Tag someone!

If you are reading this and would like to participate, consider yourself tagged!


Do you have a set writing process? Take this challenge and fill in your own answers, and don’t forget to tag me in a comment so I can read your answers! 

For similar posts, check out:

How To Publish With KDP
Hocus Pocus Writing Tag
NaNoWriMo Prep Tips
Writer Tips | How To Write A Story
Mentality And The Creative Process

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Take care,
Kat

5 comments on “My Writing Process”

  1. I’m trying to write my first short story right now and my question is: How do you keep track of all the characters/story plot/small details that you create about your world? Do you have a corkboard to stick everything on or just memorize it all?

    Like

    1. Hi, Linh! Yes! You can use a corkboard or white board to keep track of everything. Even though it lives in my head, I do often forget things so it helps to write it down. I personally love post its. I find that especially helpful with plotting because you can move around the post its with the plot points on them. Just like solving a puzzle! I also have notes jotted down on any loose paper I can find. Sometimes that means receipts, old envelopes, post its, or my journal.

      I hope this was helpful! Let me know if you have any other questions!

      -Kat

      Liked by 1 person

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