Sunday, 2 October 2016

Assessing Progress

So I missed a daily story yesterday. Mostly because I was replaying one of my favourite games from when I was a teenager. But I've also been thinking about the challenge in general.

I've written fourteen stories now, mostly on consecutive days. I'm pretty pleased with that. But one thing I've noticed since I started the daily stories is that I've done basically no work on the novel I'm writing. And that's a problem.

Writing and publishing a short story every day is a great idea, and it's forced me to think and be creative every single day. But I've written a hell of a lot of short stories. I want to be working on longer projects; novelettes, novellas, novels. And apparently I can't do that if I'm writing short fiction every day.

September was StoryADay. And with my challenge I pretty much hit that for the second half of the month. And I'm happy to leave it there. Writing a story every day for a year would no doubt have done wonders for my writing, but I can't lie it's a daunting prospect. It was doing wonders for my blog hits as well but at the end of the day that's not what I want to focus on. I have novels to write and I can't do that if I'm focusing on a challenge like this.

So here's the plan: I will take a break from daily fiction so I can work on other projects. I have a novel I want to finish before November so I can start a fresh project for NaNoWriMo. Since I had fun doing the daily stories I might have another go at it in December. Short stories will be a nice palate cleanser after NaNo. In the meantime I'll shoot for posting a short story every week, which means I can go back to doing #whimwords when the fancy strikes me.

Did I fail my challenge? No. I managed a story every day for almost two weeks and racked up something like 15-20,000 words in the process. That's a success in my book. I enjoy reckless writing challenges, but I like to think I can temper that with some practicality, that I can recognise when something isn't sustainable. I could write a story every day for a year, but it would be detrimental to my other writing goals. So I'll stop, consider it a roaring success and pencil in another round of this challenge at a later date.

I hope you've enjoyed the stories that I've written as much as I've enjoyed writing them, and I look forward to seeing you for the next ridiculous writing thing I decide to do.

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