Writing Wednesday – Character Names

Welcome back to Writing Wednesday! Every other Wednesday I’m checking in on progress with my manuscript, and setting new goals for the weeks ahead. 

Last Writing Wednesday, I set some fairly ambitious goals for myself. They may not have looked like much, but for me they were a challenge. Here’s how I did, and why I have a lot of work to do:

Process goal: Word searches, journaling, or listening to music – 10 minutes per day, 5 days per week

How I did: I didn’t track this quite as well as I should have, but I do think I managed to get in some word searches and music time at least 3 days each week. Honestly, this is the category I struggle with the most, because I do a lot of process-seeming things (like phone games) that allow me to turn my brain off, but I never know if they should count. 

Process time is supposed to get the brain flowing through an activity that frees up some creativity, if I understand it correctly. Personally, I do some of my best thinking through working with my hands, which is why historically I’ve tried to do coloring or things like that as process time. But I needed something more readily available, and I recently subscribed to a word search magazine, so I figured I’d give that a shot. I love drawing the lines and hunting for words – it’s soothing. 

So does that make it process time or self-care? I need to go back and re-read Around the Writer’s Block.

Self-care goal: Exercising 30 minutes per day, 5 days per week

How I did: Okay, time to pick a new self-care activity! I had the best of intentions, but it just didn’t happen. And now that I’m working on a massive tattoo on my left thigh, the next month is going to involve more healing than working out, so next time I need something else. EPIC FAIL.

Product Time goal: Writing or researching, 15 minutes per day, 5 days per week

  • Target tasks
    • Belle Epoque research
    • Update names
    • Get to end of Act I

How I did: I did fairly well, though not as much as I’d hoped last week. The first week I managed 3 days, and last week I did more thinking than dedicated writing. Which is fine, and I should probably give myself credit for that, so I’ll say one day. My critique group is back in full swing now, and I’m up for discussion this weekend, so I’m keeping my goal the same so I can continue making forward progress.

For my target tasks, I had to update my MS a bit with new character names. I finally decided to move my book out of Chicago, where I had originally set it, and into Paris during the Belle Epoque era. I just wasn’t excited about Chicago, and it never felt right. Paris is my favorite city in the world and having a setting I love will be much more fun to write. 

That meant I had to update some names. Minor characters all got new French first names, but I’m sticking with my main characters’ names for now. I’ve grown so attached to them, and since they are classic I hope they will work. If anything, I’ll just give them an interesting backstory to explain it. 

Goals for the next two weeks:

Process:

  • Word searches, journaling, or listening to music
    • 10 minutes per day, 5 days per week

Self-care:

  • Reading
    • 20 minutes in bed before lights-out, every night
  • Dancing
    • Shake my thang at Smart Bar one night this week

Product Time:

  • Writing or researching
    • 15 minutes per day, 5 days per week
    • Target tasks
      • Outline updated plot/beat sheet
      • Write 2 new scenes, minimum
      • Organize pages to send for critique

For any of my fellow writers out there, feel free to join me! Post your own goals below or on your blog, and check back in two weeks. I hope to cultivate this as a place of support and encouragement no matter what kind of writing you’re doing. Good luck!

 

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4 thoughts on “Writing Wednesday – Character Names

  1. I so badly want to get back into writing, but I don’t know…I haven’t been able to manage it. I wrote once last week in my pretty new journal and that’s it. I want to get back into it…I’ve got to. It used to be something I felt I had to do all the time and now it feels like I’m missing a part of myself. So frustrating!

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