Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Write or Die

My daughter has been visiting Grandma and Grandpa for the past 6 days. I had grand plans of getting tons of writing done. And I have gotten some done. Not tons, mind you. More like... pounds.

Part of me actually feels guilty working on My Own Stuff. And, since all loose ends are currently tied up for my clients, I have no pressing deadlines that must be met. So I find all sorts of ways to productively fritter away my time. (You are reading Exhibit A, for instance.)

I formed the Writing Practicum because sometimes just knowing that others will be waiting to see what you've produced provides the impetus a writer needs to write.

Incidentally, the accountability that accompanies the Writing Practicum seems to be working. It makes me keep picking away at my Pet Project. And I am not alone. One member doesn't even have a computer, but she finds a way to bring material to workshop. Another member hasn't written in years -- but last night, she brought an excellent draft of the hook to her book.

Sometimes writers just need a little extra oomph to kick their butts, make them get off of FarmTown, or stop fighting the Mafia Wars, and get to work. This is where Dr. Wicked shines.

Kelly, a Writing Practicum member, introduced me to Write or Die, a weirdly useful tool for writers.

You literally program the app to a pre-determined level of motivation (from "Gentle" through "Kamikaze" and "Electric Shock" modes), then start writing. If you stop writing, consequences result.

It's a great virtual butt-kicker for writers who thrive on negative reinforcement (you know who you are...). It's also useful for those who realize that to Write is to Live, but who need that added incentive to stop Tweeting and start writing.

Project Updates

Ryan has Good Things to say about his manuscript draft. Additions and corrections should be finished by this time next week. Photos are also on next week's docket -- though I won't be on-site to oversee the shoot.

Work on getting the word out on the Marathon Man screenplay is underway. An official actors' roundtable reading is scheduled in Sonoma on Aug. 16. It will be recorded, and then my co-author and I will analyze how well the words translate from page to performance.

Today, I'm working on outlining and "synopsizing" the chapters of my Pet Project. Or I should be doing that, instead of making blog posts... Hmmm... Perhaps it's time to enlist the help of Dr. Wicked...