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Writing a Novel in 1 Week – Day #5 — Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Well, today I just finished another 2000 words, took me about an hour to do. I’m going to take a short break then write my other novel.  Today is supposed to be the day I’d be finished with this novel if I stuck religiously to my original goal of 5000 words a day but as you know, I changed it to something I knew I could achieve; knowing that I’d be much more effective if I just slow-cooked my meal, consistently wrote the amount of words I know without a doubt I could achieve instead of blowing them up in the microwave every day. Like I said, by writing 2000 words a day five days a week, that means at the end of month (end of July) I would have written at least 40,000 words. As it is, I am already writing more than 2000 words a day.

And since I’m writing two novels now, that means that I would have written at least 80,000 words by the end of the month.

So I did a total mind shift. Instead of dreading to walk up the hill, I’m just making it a goal to walk over a rock and I know if I walk over a rock every day, I won’t wear myself out and I’ll get over that hill — maybe later than I expect but over it, nevertheless.

That’s one thing I’ve learned in this process so far.  Take small goals you know you can achieve, then cut them in half and stick consistently to them every day at least 5 days a week, if not seven. It may take you longer to achieve your goal but achieve it you shall.

I’ll tell you something else that has helped me a lot. And people think I’m crazy when I tell them this but there’s an unbelieveable book and DVD I’ve read and watched by Jack Canfield called Tapping into Unlimited Success I cannot recommend this book and DVD enough. It has helped me get through my procrastination issues, chipping them away like crazy.  Even if you think it’s a bunch of hocus pocus, I highly recommend you try it. You might be pleasantly surpirsed.

Writing a Novel in 1 Week – Day #4– Yay! Another 4000 words

I’m so excited. What a difference in my spirit.  I lowered my goal to just 2000 words a day in my novel and every day since I’ve done that and I’ve exceeded my expectations because not only have I written 2000 words in the prequel to FML but I’ve started writing another novel which for now, I’m writing under a pseudonym and I wrote 2000 words in that this morning.

The first batch of 2000 words only took me 40 minutes to write. The second batch took me about an hour in between a few distractions but nevertheless by 10am I had written 4000 words and I’m so proud of myself. Maybe it’s not 5000 words a day but I do know this, by the end of the month, by consistently writing 2000 words of my novel every day, I would have written at least 40,000 words if I write 5 days a week and because I’m writing two novels, that is 80,000 words and I cannot tell you how proud I am of myself.

Now, granted these are 2000 words of crap but for me and my process I just need to have something out on paper that I can then rewrite and I don’t think I’ll start rewriting any of the pages yet until I have a really good grasp of the characters and the story and that may not happen until I’ve finished the entire novels. I don’t know, maybe when I’m half way done or three quarters of a way done but my point is, that I’m proud of my progress and for the first time in a long time, I feel truly accomplished.

So accomplished, in fact, that I think that after I finish doing some more “day job” stuff, I will even do some more writing on one of the novels (or both) and get a little ahead of schedule because I spend the weekends with my partner and don’t often write on the weekends because we both get up super early and I cannot sneak away and do some writing while he’s asleep because if he’s awake, I always feel guilty for not spending time with him. I know, I need to get over that but for now, this process works.

I had a great conversation with a terrific line editor friend of mine who has edited many a New York Times bestseller and I’m seriously thinking about letting him line edit my work. He did a terrific job with one of my novels in the past. I mean, absolutely outstanding so after I’ve done at least one or two rewrites, and it’s ready for a line editor, would love to, in fact I’d be honored to have him do it.

Maybe that will be my new process.

1. Crapdraft.

2. Rewrite and reorganize

3. Rewrite again

4. Off to the line editor

We’ll see. Time will tell. Anyway, I’m excited about the possibilities and I’m ready to rock and roll.

Writing a Novel in 1 Week – Day #3 — So proud of myself

I cannot tell you how proud I am of myself. If you read my post yesterday, I decided that I would switch my goal to something I know that I could easily achieve and that was 2000 words a day instead of 5000 words.  Well, not only have I finished my goal of 2000 words in one hour, but I also had time to write an additional 2000 words in an entirely different story and I’m loving the flow of it. Instead of putting it on as a PDF, I decided to start writing in Google Docs and making it publicly viewable .  Now, granted the pages are still crap but I don’t care because I’m loving the flow of it and I’m getting to know the characters better. I also allowed myself to put notes in it about the characters and thoughts about future, scenes etc. I’m glad that I wrote an outline, even if I do veer off of it a lot because it gives me some sense of direction and I don’t feel like I’m wasting too much time. Jackie Collins told me that she just starts with a name of a character and a title but me, I have to know what’s going on first, even if I know that I’m going to veer off on a tangeant.

Anyway, if you care to look at the crappy pages I wrote you can view them here. I didn’t put a link to the other story yet because I’m thinking about possibly writing them under a pseudonym for a number of reasons which I won’t go into right now but if I change my mind and decide to write them under my own name, then I’ll start providing the link for them too. I’ve written an entirely different story, different characters, and almost different genre. Well, at least a different audience so I might keep it separate. I don’t know. It’s not important. All that’s important is that I write the pages.

I have a conference call with one of my clients in about 10 minutes so I got all 4000 words done before most people have begun their day jobs and I’m proud of myself. Yay! A totally different feeling.

That’s going to be my advice to you, that I’ve learned. Choose a goal you know you can accomplish and cut it in half.  Then when you achieve it, you’ll feel great and if you exceed it, even better.

After I finish some day job stuff, I’m thinking about even editing some of the pages or even writing some more in them. Yay! I feel great. What a change in feeling!

 

 

Writing a Novel in 1 Week – Day #2 — Can I Still Do it?

Today, I got a really late start on my writing. I woke up a little bit later than usual but not by much. Decided to go for a walk, get some breakfast, then read this book I stayed up way too late reading last night. Then checked my Facebook a few times, my assistant had some questions about her assignment. Then ate a salad. Started feeling guilty that I hadn’t started writing my pages for today yet, wondered if I was going to get through them today or end up feeling guilty like I have in the past for not writing the pages I should have. Then started feeling guilty that I wasn’t working on one of my clients’ projects and knowing another client of mine was going to call me sometime today to talk about his; knowing I should work on that too some more but then assigning it to another assistant to help me with starting tomorrow.

Yah-duh, Yah-duh, Yah-duh.

Well, finally I got started writing about 10:30am using Write or Die because I knew that that would keep me motivated and not distracted. The only thing I don’t like about that program is because I don’t think it automatically saves and so if your power goes out, you lose everything. It’s a gamble I was willing to take. I had to get through it.

UPDATE — It’s 6:33pm

Today I wrote 2200 words. About half of what I’m aiming for and you know what? I don’t feel as bad about it as you might think because I’ve come up with a plan. Rather than feeling like a failure for not writing 5000 words a day. My new goal is something I know I can achieve virtually effortlessly and that is 2000 words a day. Not as much as Nicholas Sparks but easily achievable.

I just have to do it. This way, if I decide to do more, then great. And if I only reach my goal, then that’s good too.

This means by writing 2000 words a day, five days a week that is 10,000 words a week or 40,000 words a month which is about the size of most of my novels and about 2 of my novellas should I choose to go that route.

This way I’ll start feeling like a success as a writer again.

I’ve also decided that after this story, that I’m going to write something more mainstream with a bigger audience and I already have a story in mind. But I’ll tell you about that another time.

To me, it’s about the emotions, the feelings of achievement. I don’t like feeling like a loser because I didn’t accomplish yet another goal, no matter how small it is. And it doesn’t matter to me that the average person cannot write as much as I can. It’s about me and my personal goals for myself.

I’m going to pick goals I know for sure I can easily achieve and then anything else is gravey.

Speaking of which, I very much like how the story is flowing now. I also found, allowing myself to write notes and thoughts about the characters and ideas for scenes helps inspire me as well.

Well, here are my pages for today. I might even get in some more pages before I get to bed but I’m inspired now because I know that I can accomplish 2000 words a day easily.

Now, I have to think about what I’ll do with the rest of my time (besides my dad job stuff, of course). Maybe I’ll have time to look at the pages from the day before and edit them, maybe I’ll read more in my genre. Not sure, but it’s a good problem to have.

I think I’ll do those first thing in the morning and or at the end of the night when I come back from the gym.

 

Excerpt – Forever My Lady by Jeff Rivera

Prologue

DON’T BE STUPID, FOO’. DON’T BE A PENDEJO.

Dio looked at his homie Spooky’s grip on his jacket. Most of his boys called Dio “Playboy” because all the ladies loved him, but those who had known him since he was a kid called him by his real name, Dio.

He took another hit off his joint. He’d given up smoking over a year ago, had to, but on this day he was more nervous than he had ever been in his life.

Thunder rumbled and rain poured, making it impossible to see. Thunder scared Dio, always had. Dio fought to keep from shaking. He couldn’t breathe, couldn’t swallow. He tried to hide his fear. His mind was set. He had to do it.

Dio yanked his arm away from Spooky and pushed the door open. “Just keep the car runnin’, ése.

Spooky was a big guy, tattoos up and down his arm and a glass eye. He normally would have just kept Dio from leaving at all, but he knew nothing could stop him. Nothing at all.

Dio jumped out of the car. It was a ’57 Chevy, complete with chrome wheels, slick red, with a chili-pepper-hot Mexican jaina painted across the hood. Dio had painted that picture himself. It was dope.

He slammed the door shut and looked up at the cathedral in front of him. Lightning illuminated its majestic towers, windows with an eerie stained glass. He’d spent many a night imagining this would be where he’d marry her. They’d have a huge wedding with members of their families flying

in from all over the world just to watch this event, this marriage he thought was so destined to be. He’d put his everything into this dream, his one and only dream, and now as he yanked the heavy oak doors open, his heart pounded like a subwoofer.

He dried his soaked clothes with his hand and scratched his shoes on the mat so as not to squeak across the old wood floor. The church was jam-packed, mostly with Mexicans and

Puerto Ricans, but some blacks.

Probably his familia, Dio thought. How could she even think about marrying some pinche negro?

The grand organ music permeated the building while a choir of children sang, their voices echoing throughout the church. It smelled musty in the air, a mix of wood stain and must as if they had never really cleaned the place, just painted over it.

He tried not to look too suspicious, slipping past everyone. Funny, he was dressed probably better than he’d ever been. Black suit, his wavy black hair slicked back, starched white shirt, polished black shoes. Dio had grown into a very nice-looking young man. Maybe he could have even been a model, had he played his cards right. Maybe if he hadn’t grown up in the slums of

Northeast Vegas, he could have been one of those Latin heartthrobs who were in those magazines. Instead, most of the time he looked like the thug most people assumed he was just by looking at him. But on this day, this very weird day, he was even wearing a tie. Jennifer would have been so proud of him if she could see him. Funny, he’d probably be the last thing she’d see.

He checked his jacket pocket to make sure it was still there. Yep, it felt like a brick pressed against his chest. But he was so numb, or more like so focused, that he was oblivious to it. All he knew was that he had to find Jennifer, and he would use any means necessary.

Wham! Dio bumped hard into a glass table. His thigh throbbed in pain as bullets dropped from his pocket and bounced off the wood floor. The sound echoed all over the lobby. People looked around for the source of the sound, but Dio managed to scoop them up before anyone could see.

He got up and noticed the beautiful ice sculpture on the table—melting, dripping like an ice-cream cone in August. Melting just like his heart.

He saw Father Martínez, his priest, the one he’d grown up with. It was as if the whole world had turned against him. They’d sided with Jennifer, when this was supposed to be their wedding. It was as if she’d slapped him across the face, as if nothing they’d been through together even mattered.

The whole thing was surreal.

She loved him. She’d said that over and over to him since they were little kids. She’d taken care of him and believed in him and dreamed with him and held him when nobody else had cared.

Estoy aquí para ti. No matter what—siempre,” they’d promised each other. And a promise was a promise.

“Don’t be stupid, foo’. Don’t be a pendejo.” Spooky’s scolding remarks kept playing in his head. He warned Dio to just let it go. It wasn’t worth it. Normally Spooky would have been all for it, but this time around he said, “Olvídalo . . . let it go.” It was as if he sensed something was going to go

wrong and, no matter how high Spooky had been, his gut was always right. Dio only hoped this time around he was wrong. He had worked so hard. He could really get a fresh new start now, “a

new lease on life,” as his probation officer used to say, but now he was risking it all to confront Jennifer.

Was Spooky right? Should he just let it go, face it that she didn’t want to be with him no matter how hard and bad it felt? Should he just forget the whole thing? Maybe he’d meet some other ruca. Time heals all wounds, they say, and maybe if he’d just—but no. Dio shoved those thoughts out

of his mind. He’d spent the last year changing his life around for her, so they could be together, so he would be the man she said she’d always wanted, so he could be the daddy his daughter needed. They were meant to be together and he was going to make Jennifer understand that, if it was the last thing he did.

He could see Jennifer’s family in the front, dressed in their Sunday best. Her mom always made a spectacle of herself with her gigantic summer hat in purple. She never did like Dio and he knew she had probably orchestrated this whole thing, probably arranged the whole wedding herself.

He wondered if perhaps Jennifer was doing this just to make her mom happy, but then he saw her… the music changed, the children’s choir sounded so beautiful, he had to admit, so irritatingly perfect. All heads turned and everyone gasped as the bride, Jennifer, made her way down the aisle. Her father took her arm, biting his lip, trying not to cry. He looks nervous, Dio thought.

Jennifer looked incredible. How could she afford a dress like that? The guy must be rich or something. That’s probablywhat it was. That’s probably why she was marrying him. It had to

be the money. The one thing Dio could never give her. Her gown had a lace top, cut just low enough to show her sensual bustline, but high enough to showcase the first-class act that she was. Her face was shielded by her veil. He hadn’t seen her in so long. It seemed like the whole congregation held its breath with him.

Her mom made a dramatic spectacle of herself. Her wails were the only thing that could be heard above the organ playing as the children’s choir reached a crescendo, then trailed off. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house. Even Dio had to fight the tears.

Thunder rumbled. Her father escorted her over to her groom. He was a nice-looking man, a light-skinned black man. Maybe he was mulatto or something. He wore a striped, stuffed tie, not a traditional bow tie, and the tux must have been Armani or something. He had one of those smiles with teeth so white it blinded you. His gaze never left Jennifer, even as the priest rambled on and on with the vows.

“I, Antonio Estrella—”

What kind of nombre was that? Estrella? Jennifer Estrella. It just didn’t match her. No le queda.

“. . . hereby take you as my wife, to have and to hold . . .”

There was a lump in the back of Dio’s throat. He wanted to burst out, “No!” It hurt so much.

“I, Jennifer Lalita Sánchez . . .”

He couldn’t believe his ears; she was promising him her life.

Thunder rumbled and the lights went out. There was a small gasp in the audience, but Jennifer just smiled, the candles illuminating her. She was too lost in the groom’s eyes.

“. . . to have and to hold, through sickness and health . . .” she continued.

He couldn’t help it anymore. Tears came streaming from Dio’s eyes. This was too much for him. He was about to explode. His blood boiled. He looked around at all the stained-glass Bible stories, the creepy statue of Jesus on the cross. He swore Jesus was glaring right at him as if he were saying, “No lo hagas . . . don’t do it.” He looked the other way, but the statue of the Virgin Mary scolded him as well.

Dio couldn’t help but think how proud his own mother had been with how he’d changed his life around, the tears of joy she’d shed. He’d never seen her like that before. He shuddered to think how his mother would feel after all this went down, how ashamed she’d be. Maybe it would drive

her to drinking again. Drinking again, after how far she’d come around.

“With the power invested in me by the state of Nevada, I hereby declare you . . . man and wife.”

Dio couldn’t breathe. The only thing that kept him from passing out was seeing Jennifer’s face as her new husband lifted the veil. She was more beautiful than ever. She had olive-colored skin and was the type of girl who never did need any makeup. In fact, she hated wearing it. But this time she was wearing just enough. Her dark brown hair was curled; glitter sparkled in it. She looked like an angel, no, a goddess, better than the pictures Dio drew of her, better than he’d remembered her looking in his dreams.

He’d never seen Jennifer so happy. Not even when she was with him. She had always seemed so distracted, but now she really did look like she was in love.

How could that be possible?

He loved her more than he’d ever loved anyone. Didn’t she see that? How could she do this to him?

The ice sculpture melted like it was on fire.

His heart raced as he reached for the .45 caliber in his pocket, which Dio called his cohete. He could hear the rain pounding against the stained-glass windows and the roof. His sweaty hands pulled for it, his heart in his throat. He crossed himself, closed his eyes, and prayed he was about to do the right thing.

OR YOU CAN PURCHASE IT FROM AMAZON.

Writing a Novel in Week – Ready to Begin!

Well, I’m getting ready to start! It’s about 6:30am here in Costa Rica. I didn’t get a lot of sleep last night for personal reasons so maybe I’m not as fresh as I would like to be but I’m not using that as an excuse. I’m ready to rock and roll. I’m going to spend about 30 minutes to look over my notes/outline a little bit and then I’m going to get started. Right now, I’m filled with all kinds of feelings: excited, wondering “what have I gotten myself into?”, wondering if I can actually do it (not just today but all week long), embarrassed at how bad I anticipate the pages to be and wondering what people will think of me when they realize just how bad my first drafts are, but also very liberated because there’s nothing to hide — I cannot wait until the pages are perfect before they’re out in public, I’m just letting them out as-is. I guess it’s kind of like when celebrities like Tyra Banks go out on national television without their makeup.  Anyway, here I go! I’ll keep you updated.

An update — It’s 9am

My progress so far:

I haven’t read any of the pages to see if they’re any good but I’m glad they’re flowing. I’ve been writing for 2 hours at this point and have about 1800 words written so far. I would normally have twice as much written by now but I had a couple of fires to put out this morning. But I kept writing. Now, it’s about 9am here and I have to take a break to do some “day job” stuff that’s looming, then I can go back to writing. I really want to reach my goal of 5000 words and I am really into the story. That’s what I love about writing, how the story unfolds when you don’t judge it. I know that I’ll have to go back and clean it up and make it actually compelling and intriguing enough for people to want to read but at least I have something written. And I’m proud of myself so far.

I’m posting what I’ve done so far here.

 

2nd update. It’s 9pm

Well, I didn’t get as much writing done as I was hoping on this first day. Only about 3500 words. But I’m proud of myself for writing that much with all the drama and distractions I had going on today and I did a lot of writing by bringing my laptop with me while my partner was at one of his Civil & Gay Rights meetings. They were all talking in Spanish so I was able to tune them out and get a lot done.

I didn’t beat my crack-like addiction to Facebook but I did go on it much less than I usually do so for that I’m proud. One thing I think I’m going to try tomorrow is start writing much earlier. Get my water and food in front of me; maybe even coffee so I have no reason to get up. I might even use that Write or Die program so that I don’t get tempted to check my email. I’ll probably send my assistant her assignments before hand so that I don’t have any reason to check my email until about 9am or 10am when my “day job” begins. That might help.

Emotionally, I feel good having done something and written a lot especially with what happened today (I’ll tell you about it one day, but not today) and I kept going. I also know that I wrote a lot more than most people did today and that my hero, Nicholas Sparks generally writes about 3000 words every day so I think I even beat good ol’ Nick. I also know that Nicholas said that he read my original Forever My Lady and liked it when I interviewed him for Huffington Post, so that was a great vote of confidence.

Funny, I don’t feel the pressure I did yesterday. I don’t care if this version is as good and well-loved as the original becuase it’s just the crap draft anyway and I have yet to sprinkle the Jeff Rivera magic on it. For me, I have literally sketched it; just like an artist my sketch a drawing first before they start their painting. It’s only one layer of this work.

Well, tomorrow’s a new day! Wish me luck!

Here are the total crappy pages I wrote today so far. Feel free to take a look but don’t judge, here.

 

Writing a Novel in 1 Week – I’m Almost Ready

It’s Sunday, June 24th and I’m prepping myself for writing this novel this week.  I’m excited and I know that I can get through each day’s writing in the morning before my day job work. I’m committed and I think that’s the most important part. I thank everyone who’s lent their support for me. This is important to me.  And I know that I’m not writing a mass-market novel that everyone’s going to love. I know this is a small story with a small niche audience. It’s not going to appeal to everybody.  I have other stories for that in mind. I just need to get through this for my own personal development, my own personal goals.

What I’m doing while I still have time to prepare is going through my outline, re-arranging things flushing the story out, filling in details, etc. Just getting myself a little better organized personally. I know that once I start writing, the story will change, the characters will tell me they want to do something totally different than I have planned and I’m okay with that but this will save me a little time.

As an inspiration, I found this FABULOUS video clip from one of Sean Connery’s old movies called Finding Forrester that I absolutely love and I hope that it will provide some source of inspiration for you to if you are writing your first draft as well and needing a little bit of a motivation to get through it as you herald through all the self-doubt and other obstacles we create when we’re facing our fears.

 

Watch and enjoy!

Writing a Novel in 1 Week – Before I begin

MY FIRST STEPS

Okay, so I´ve come up with a plan for my crazy mission to write my Forever My Lady novella this week.

1) Come up with a basic outline
dump every idea I have both good and bad
organize those ideas into some type of order
ask self: does this scene make me want to know what´s going to happen next?
does this scene make me feel for the character?
is this scene one I´d want to share with my family?
if the answer is not yes to at least 2 out of the 3, dump the scene.


2) Do a more detailed outline
more details about the scene
decide the voice I want to use for this book. Will it be similar to the original Forever
My Lady or will I try something different?


3) Start crap drafting on Monday
Commit to at least 5000 words a day.
I can write that probably in about 2 or 3 hours if I don´t judge or read anything that I write and don’t go back to fix the erros. If I have time, I can do another draft of the pages that same day, asking myself the same 3 questions and tweak it.

 

 

4) Wash and repeat until I´ve finished it, then move on to the next book so I can get some emotional space from this one before I rewrite.

Tomorrow´s the day! Can I do it? We´ll find out.

 

I want to show you a screen shot of my outline that I started for the novella. I’m totally in love with Scriveners which my friend, author Cyd Madsen introduced me. They have a virtual corkboard and 3×5 cards that you can dump ideas into and then rearrange etc just like you would in real life.

 

So that’s what I did, dumped my ideas on these cards. If you want to see a full view of what I wrote on the cards, you can click here

 

You’ll also notice, in this shot that I’ve begun to rough-outline books 2-6 (Yes, there will be more) I had to have an idea because everything that happens in each books affects the other.

 

 

Writing a Novel in 1 Week – The Experiment — Can I Do It?

I decided to try a little experiment. You see, ever since I wrote Forever My Lady, I´ve been shell-shocked. Who knew that this little story, my first novel, would ever do so well? That an Executive Producer of an Oscar-nominated film would ask to option the film rights, that a Broadway Tony-nominated director would ask to turn it into a rock opera? That I would self-publish it and it would get picked up by a major publisher. It broke all the rules but more so than that, the novel really moved people emotionally. This was great in that, that´s my ultimate goal always in every novel, but it was bad in that for the last almost 10 years, I wondered, can I do it again?


I´ve started and stopped so many novels, it´s ridiculous. And yes, I´ve sold 4 other books since then to other publishers but for the last 10 years and I´ve written more first drafts of other novels than I can count.  Writing crap drafts, as I call them, are no problem. They´re not any good, they´re not supposed to be. But they´re hardly readable.

And I´ve procrastinated, usually subconsciously from ever doing the sequel or prequel or whatever, of the Forever My Lady story.  Partly, I think because I was sick and tired of the characters, having lived with them for so long but mostly I had self-doubt.

The question was, as I said, before: Could I do it again?

Would people say, “is that it? That´s what I waited ten years ago?”

Anyway, I´m tired of it!

 

I´m tired of the feeling of being a failure. You could say, how can you feel like a failure when you hob-nob with some of the biggest names in publishing and entertainment, have celebrity clients, live the life of your dreams in a tropical paradise, jet-set around the world and have the love of your life?

Well, whenever I don´t finish a novel to it´s very best, I feel like that. Maybe it´s the Virgo in me that´s so hard on myself.

Whatever it is, I´m tired of getting excited about writing another book in the series because I get yet another emotionally moving fan letter asking me to write another book in the series along with the looming question, when is the next one coming out? and then I don’t finish it.

And I decided to do something about it, finally.

My plan is this. More importantly, my committment is this:

To write the damn thing.

I don´t like the feeling of having work looming over me and being mad at myself for yet another week, month or year passing and the story still is not done.

So, starting Monday, June 25th, I´m going to start writing the prequel to the Forever My Lady novel and my commitment is to have it finished by Friday, June 29th.

I´m not concerned about the marketing of it, or what the cover will look like or whether or not anyone will actually want to read it. I´m just going to do the damn thang.

When I say novel, I really mean novella — I´m guessing around 25,000-30,000 words. And when I say finished, I mean, it´ll be crapped out.  It won´t be any good. It´ll be barely readable and I´m going to post the pages as a PDF each day, however many I get done.  If I succeed, it´ll be on the record, if I fail, it´ll be on the record.

Do you really know how big of deal this is for a writer?

To bare your soul in public, putting your daily crappy pages for all the world to read, knowing just how horrible the pages are going to be? To open yourself up to criticism for those that think you should only show your best work and certainly shouldn´t crap out pages, that you should take your time and craft each carefully?

Sure, I´ll get those criticisms and I´ll get those from fans who have been waiting for years to read the prequels or sequels of the novel and think, “Yuck! This isn´t very good. This is what I´ve been waiting for?”

And of course, there will be the people that will say, “Oh, he´s just doing this as a publicity stunt to sell more books.”

And to the critics, I say, }Whatever.”

It has nothing to do with reality.

The reality is, I´m writing these pages, not as a testament to my talent. I know they´ll be bad, real bad but I´m going to show you the journey. All the misspellings, my notes, my fears, my thoughts, how bad that a first draft really can be will be right there on the table for the world to see and I´m also going to show you my next draft of the prequel and my next so you can see my creative process in this. I´m also going to post my notes about my feelings for each day about what I´ve done, the good, the bad and the ugly.

If you´re a grammar cop, you´re going to have a field day.

If you´re the type of person that likes to blog negative things about people and huddle together in online forum cesspools with other writers and bad-mouth people instead of working on your own novel, then you´re going to love this too.

Now, granted, I know these characters in this prequel pretty well, but I´ll show you my process in creating characters anyway so you can see how I think and create.

Now, will people want to buy the book when they´ve seen the process? Will they be turned off by how bad the writing is in the first crap draft? Maybe. But my answer is, I don´t care.

I know this needs to get done.

What will I be doing in the meantime before I start writing on Monday? Well, for one, I´m going to enjoy the weekend with my partner, Geovanny, and taking notes on any creative ideas that come my way.

If I get a chance, I´m also going to show you some of my crap draft outline notes so you can see how I formulate ideas etc so you can see that process too.

Now, when I do this, I am not saying: I have THE answer to the creative process and that everyone should be following my process. No, I´m saying, I have the answer to MY creative process on this particular book. Next book, I might have a totally different process.

HERE´S THE THING:

You might say, sure you can do this Jeff because you´re a full-time writer. Well, here´s the thing, I have a day job too!

 

 

  • I have to tighten up a client´s book proposal which is long overdue.
  • I have tighten up a screenplay which is overdue too this week
  • And I´m in the middle of a publicity and marketing campaign for a client who´s paying me good money that wants to see some serious results.
  • I have a major client, one of the biggest nonfiction authors of all time that I´m helping with a campaign this week.
  • And another major author multiple New York Times bestselling client who has 2 big deals — six and seven figure deals closing this week plus a looming sponsorship deal for her that I helped orchestrate. (Don´t get excited that´s how much she´s making, not me)
  • Monday morning I have a conference call and my online therapist/counselor/psychologist who is going to be Skyping me for our first session. Lord help me, I´m going to need therapy after this week.
  • I have a baby turtle to to take care of that won´t eat and is being drowned daily by the bigger turtle that I have to constantly monitor.
  • I should give my mom and sister a call this week and my brother and father if I can track down where they are. And I have 12 nieces and nephews I´m thinking of constantly.
  • On top of that, I have literally hundreds of non-spam emails to answer that will be coming in every single day. So, I´m going to answer all of those after I do my pages and my other “day job” work.
  • I get “I love you” text messages every 20 minutes from my partner that I´m expected to answer immediately.
  • Facebook´s an addiction for me. And I usually get on it when I´m waiting for a page to load on the Internet or something that takes forever. But I´m going to limit that to 1-2 times per day.
  • And I need to wrap up the day by 3pm because that´s when I hit the gym with my partner

 

 

 

In other words, I´m not going to wait for the perfect time, because there never is going to be a perfect time.

 

So, I´m going to be starting first thing, Monday morning.


That´s what I´m committing to this week. I´ll likely write from about 4am-10am my time every day this week, probably about 5000 words of crap every day, which I´ll post no matter how bad they are. And whether I succeed or fail will all be public.

If you´d like to join me, and post your own crap pages on your own blog, let me know, contact me by commenting on my Facebook and I´ll reach out to you so we can go on this journey together!

Wish me luck. I´m scared bearing my soul in public — letting the public see just how horrible my first crap drafts really are but I´ve got to do what I’ve got to do.