Sidetracked from my goals by the easy stuff

With little time I often write the “easy stuff” in order to feel like I’ve achieved something each day. By doing this I am avoiding what is really important to me; my short story and novel.

The easy things are smaller pieces of writing, boxes that I can easily tick each day, for example, a diary entry, composing a post on my favourite blog, or writing up a short article for my website. Material for these tasks surround me each day. They are almost effortless to put together.

I feel that these easy things are my form of procrastination, avoiding the bigger writing tasks. I often ask myself:

Am I afraid to begin these projects, or am I simply lazy? Perhaps its all just too hard.

Writing stories comes less easily to me. Its tough to make sense of an idea I have, and make it work on paper. Its somewhat of a logistical feat for me. Perhaps I should stick to writing short stories for a while; keep my ideas in check, give myself narrow parameters to work within, and develop my writing skills slowly within controlled confines.

My Short Story – how to start, how to develop

At the moment my short story is planned out and only partly written. I’m not completely happy with all of the ideas but sometimes when I write out the story other ideas may flourish. This is the first hurdle for me. Getting the entire story written out. I need to write it out regardless of whether I’m happy with it.

I know from the short writing course I attended that authors create draft, after draft. You’ll never have the perfect story straight away.

I thought I’d add here what constitutes a short story. You may already know this, but I found it and thought it was helpful.

Short stories

  1. have a narrator; that is, someone tells the story;
  2. have at least one character in them;
  3. have some action occur (or perhaps fails to occur);
  4. take place somewhere; that is, there is a setting for the action;
  5. and someone either learns something or fails to learn something (theme).

If I can get my short story finished then I can begin a few exercises which may help me transform it into something I really love. Or, the second draft.

Some exercises once I’ve finished the first draft:

1. write the story from another characters point of view – quite a common exercise, helpful nonetheless

2. write out facts I know about each character and build who they are – colour in the background

3. change the setting – mix things up a little, put your characters in an environment they are uncomfortable in

I will try to achieve these steps and let you know how I go.

 

 

 

 

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2 responses to “Sidetracked from my goals by the easy stuff

  • springriverimagination

    Those exercises at the end sound…kind of fun! I’ve been working on a project I call “The Lone Child” recently and I have just finished the prelude and 1st chapter. I think I just might use those exercises, if only to have a little fun with my story! After all not all of an author’s job is hard work!
    Thanks for sharing those.

    • becomeawriteroneday

      That’s okay. Sometimes mixing things up a little can help you bring a little extra something to your story, add a little depth to a character, or perhaps cause you to change things altogether. This is usually in my case!
      Well done on getting the start of your project done! I hope these exercises help a bit.

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