Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Jumping on the ROW80 Train

Since revising my second draft, I have been in a funny little rut. There are about 80 bagillion tweaks I need to make, notes from my critique group to incorporate, and characters who need rounding out. I love making lists and tackling goals, but instead of tackling, I'm floundering. Flip flopping. Eating pistachios.

Sometimes timing can't be more perfect. Just two days after I got back from Europe, my writer pals Ghenet and Gabi signed up for A Round of Words in 80 Days. Their goals inspired me to get organized and start karate-chopping my way back into it. So here are my goals for ROW80 - which I outlined dark and early this morning (the sun does not shine at 6am, apparently).
Oct 3-Nov 19 (weeks 1-7)
      Organize revision notes (personal and from critique group)
      Read story in 50-page chunks
      Pull out dialogue and revise
      Incorporate revisions

Nov 20-Dec 3 (weeks 8-9)
     Read through complete manuscript
     Send to two Beta readers
     Revise query letter / synopsis
     Outline new project

Dec 4-Dec 22 (10-12)
     Contact agents who requested pages from 2011 conferences and queries
     Write 10k words of new project

To encourage accountability and build community, ROW80 goal updates are twice a week. I'll be checking in more than usual on my progress. Hopefully it will be fantastically positive, and not at all dismal. This girl loves a deadline. Here's to baby steps, Dr. Leo Marvin!!


  1. Sounds like an awesome plan! Go you! Yay for ROW80!

  2. Yay I'm glad you decided to join. Your goals sound great. We can encourage each other at our weekly write nights!

    BTW, do you think you'll go to the Writer's Digest conference again in January? If so, we should coordinate! I finally feel like I can do the pitch slam. :)

  3. Welcome aboard! Revisions can be hard to cut into goals, but it looks like you have a good plan worked out. Good luck!

    Mmm, pistachios...

  4. Fantastic list of goals. I am super excited for you and can't wait to watch your progress as you go!

  5. @gabi - Go you, too!

    @ghenet - Thanks for the inspiration. This was the perfect kick in the pants for me. I got the emails about Writer's Digest, and think it's a go. Looks like they are only doing the 3-day registration now, though?

  6. @katherine - pistachios indeed! too bad it takes two hands to eat them. they don't help with revisions much ;)

    @natalie - thanks much - and i love your website! it's gorgeous!

  7. Great list of goals, I like how you've got them in timeline form and not necessarily number of pages per day form. They seem very attainable. Good luck to you! (and congrats on your requests for pages--best of luck!)

  8. Love that you broke it down into a timeline. Good luck with your goals! I look forward to getting to know you in round 4 :)

  9. @Erin - thanks! The revising stage is tricky, and I found that page goals (20 per week) or sections helps a bit. Excited to start digging in now!!

    @Raeylyn - looking forward to hearing about your romance novel, too!!

  10. Wonderful goals! I like the timeline view! I need to evaluate my goals and see what realistic timelines I can put them in!
    PS, in case you don't make it back to my blog, I pasted my reply here:

    Science fiction is my first genre-love, so I would start with the classics to get you familiar with the common motifs. Must-reads would be: Frank Herbert’s Dune, Arthur Clarke’s A Childhood’s End, Orson Card’s Ender’s Game. These vary widely in style enough to give you a good picture.
    (The Little Prince would be a good read because that mashes up the idea of space travel with fantasy and philosophy…)
    Contemporary science fiction (especially YA) has moved away from the classic forms, but it’s not a bad thing. I enjoyed Beth Revis’s Across the Universe, Paolo Bacigalupi’s Ship Breaker (more post-apocalyptic than outer space), and am reading Amy Ryan’s Glow.
    Good luck, and I’ll be following your ROW!