Working on a New Challenge

RavenFLHRKNBigOkay,  fun’s over. Time to focus on another goal. I’ve got four novels sitting in storage. I’m ready to make it three.  I’ve decided to tackle the revision for the second biggest monster in my own personal slush pile. At 110,000 words, it’s ready for a pruning.

I’m going to name this endeavor “The August Push” or TAP.  In the sixteen days remaining in July, I intend to reorganize my work sheets  and story plan check lists.  I will create a folder to house everything pertaining to this project, dividing it up into sections for research, character exploration, plot lines, subplots, etc…  I will use my Twitter to post my progress and ask for advice should I need it.

To be clear about this project, I’m not starting entirely from scratch, but the draft is a horrendous mess, so I might as well be.  I’m in stage 2, meaning everything I skipped over or made up in the first draft has to be carefully scrutinized.

To help me achieve this goal, I’ve selected “from First Draft to Finished Novel” by Karen S. Wiesner. I’ve been skimming through this book examining the work sheets and thinking over her approach toward taking a first draft and making it a finished novel.  There are sixteen days left until August. Sixteen days to rewrite the character sketches, refresh my memory of the plot, subplot and whatever else. Sixteen days to go to the library, borrow my reference materials, and take notes.

I invite anyone to set a similar goal. Gird up thy loins.  Pull out whatever crinkly drafts you’ve stuffed under the bed or behind the toilet.  Donate the last of July to compiling the information you need to make your story real.

Don’t have the book? Check out this link for the worksheets you’ll need.

Karen Wiesner also has another book “First Draft in 30 Days.” If you want to start there fine.  Here’s a link to info on that book;

I’m talking thirty days to get a first draft to the next level or to write a first draft. I’m inviting whoever would like to do this to look me up on twitter a under Ravennelaw. Tweet me and let me know your word count if you like.

But wear protective glasses cause it’s going to be a blood bath over in my neck of the woods.  I’m not going to show any mercy.


7 Responses to “Working on a New Challenge”
  1. OrtolanC.Chordeiles says:

    Whoa. The Raven is as serious as its word. I’m looking forward to checking in after 30 days (which happens to be right around my own summer completion time), and gleaning for a wicked update from that “neck of the woods.” I think I can expect to see a REAL Grimm’s Fairy Tales exposition under those trees.

  2. Shriek says:

    Raven! Thanks for your concept of TAP, and I’m going dive in and take this challenge. My starting point will be a little different. For me, it’s “shitty first draft” stage. During July (more than half gone already) I’ve taken the preliminary work done in the Mystery & Suspense module class (WVU) and hacking through the three arcs of the story to find sensory hooks for the scenes. (This is per chapter 5 in Butler’s “From Where You Dream.”) I already had set August aside for barreling through the shitty draft. Then, at long last, I’ll be ready for the fun stuff of a second draft. By then, maybe another challenge will come along. Don’t know yet whether I want to do Twitter along with this or not. Thinking about it. But, Raven, I’ll definitely follow you on Twitter.

    • ravenlaw says:

      Very cool. I’ve sent an invite to a few writers. Just the ones I know have got this kind of a challenge staring them in the face. Working together might be the thing that gets them moving.

      Glad to have you aboard!


  3. Greta Igl says:

    Raven, found your blog via Jodi MacArthur’s blog. Congrats on your Flash 40 win and interview. Such kudos are gold for us writers.

    Like the challenge. I have two novels in dusty boxes myself. Here’s my twist–two chapters revised/polished in August and September. I don’t tweet, but I’ll post my progress on my blog.

    • Ravenne says:

      Thanks Greta,

      I’m hearing back from a lot of writers caught in the void between the first draft and the revision. I’ve realized I’ll never do this unless I push myself into it. So, the open challenge is the first push. I’m also in a class at WUV that focuses on worldbuilding. Another “push” for August that, if all goes according to plan, will set me up with the details that are missing from my first draft.

      I’m a big believer in multi-purpose endeavors. Once I decided to do TAP! I signed up for the worldbuilding class to support the push. I’ve accomplished a lot in five days. Still pushing…

      Hope you are moving along too!


  4. P. Clarke says:

    I think I’ll take you up on this challenge. My Story is a dreadful wreck. I need to dust off huge portions of the plot. Some major “road construction ahead”. Its been swimming around in a puddle of scenes and dialogue for long enough. I’ll join. Count me in.

    I don’t know where I’ll post my progress yet.

  5. ravenlaw says:

    Glad to hear from you P. Clarke. I look forward to working with you during the month of August.


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