Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Getting Back to a Writing Project

Getting back to a writing project after you’ve been away from it for a few months is so hard! (I took a break to revise another novel.) I’ve been trying out a lot of different strategies:

1) Warm-up writing in my journal

2) Reading through what I’ve done already to get back into the story and characters

3) Reviewing plot notes and my outline, so I remember where the story is going (as if I could forget, I've spent a couple of years on this thing)

4) Reading other people's strategies -- see Nathan Bradford's post on Monday:  How to Return to Writing After a Long Break

5) Telling myself it doesn’t matter if I write crap since I can always delete it

What I need to do is just start writing. 

My best strategy is to start with one tiny bit. A paragraph. A sentence. (Yes, I've had days where all I've written is a sentence. It was a darn good sentence, too). It's the same way I tackled my revisions. Even though it seems like a snail-like process, writing a small amount every day eventually amounts to something. I'm hoping it will start a snowball effect where I just can't not write.

Do you have any good tips for getting back into the writing flow? 


  1. Just do it. :) And realize that what you write the first couple days might need work!

  2. I start by rereading what I've been already written. I usually can't help but start changing stuff.


  3. Ha about #5! I feel the exact same way when diving back into a project. Look for the positives!

  4. I print my "abandoned" manuscripts and read them like a book. I take notes in the margins, I line edit, etc.

    This helps me see where I need to work, as well as rekindle my excitement for the project. Good luck to you!

  5. I usually have an outline and so I review that and if I have a full draft mansucript, I read through it like Elana does.

  6. I do a lot of number 5. I have a manuscript that I need to get back into, but I've also found I can only work on one at time.

  7. I wish I had some great and magical advice for you...but I don't. Just keep writing, just keep writing, just keep writing, writing, writing...


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