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Friday Writers’ Date: Celebrate Leap Year

keyboardCalling everyone, in any location, who is not inexorably committed elsewhere on Friday, February 29 from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.! Betsy and Miranda will be meeting in person for a no-holds-barred writing stint. Join us, from wherever you are, for a virtual creative session. No e-mail or internet or chat breaks except for five minutes at the top of each hour. Even if you can only fit in 30 minutes–join us anyway. Post and let us know how it goes. 🙂
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  1. Well, our writers’ date was a success. Not without a few lessons learned, however.

    1) If you’re meeting a friend, make sure you catch up on the phone BEFORE your writing session, so that you can resist spending the first hour chatting.

    2) Pick a place that does NOT have lots of screaming, crawling children. Especially when you just left your own screaming, crawling children at home.

    I made good progress on the chapter I’m working on–came up with some unexpected material–and Betsy started a new essay. It definitely helps to have someone clicking away on a laptop next to you (especially if you’re used to working all alone). And Betsy writes FAST, so I had to try and keep up 🙂 We plan to reconvene next week. If anyone else can “join” us, post and let us know!

    February 29, 2008
  2. Congrats on your sucessful writing date. I was probably on the computer some of that time too. I finished my novel and have been going back and forth making corrections and tweaks all day as things come to me.

    It might be fun to have word wars with each other too. (Set a time limit and see who writes the most words during that time.) It’s a good way to get the juices flowing and has been really successful whenever we have write-ins for NANOWRIMO.

    February 29, 2008
  3. Hey, those of us with children hanging on the hip–IMPOSSIBLE to commit to that long of a stint. But hey,i wrote a blog post and was thinking of you two! 😉

    February 29, 2008
  4. It was good in all kinds of ways, and I think that the time spent catching up at the start really propelled me to work hard once we settled down. (M, do you really think a phone call would be as satisfying??) It was like reward first, then penance, except that writing is hardly penance.

    One of the things that became clear from the experience was that working at home alone is starting to get old. It felt good to work in an “office,” even if the office we picked turned out to be the area’s biggest playdate spot. I know I need to make a lot of changes in my professional life, as well as in my creative life, and getting out and being around people seems to be a key. I’ve known this, just haven’t known what to do about it.

    The other thing that was good for me was that, with this block of time boxed off and the peer pressure to do something with it, I had to just pick something and work on it. When we started, I had four open documents on my laptop, all containing a few sentences that sucked (I know I’m a writer and I should do better than this word, but I find it so accurate…) But I had to pick something, so I took my best shot at what I would be successful at and just went at it. I have not been feeling very good about my writing lately, and I haven’t found forcing myself to be very productive in the past. But by the time we parted, I was feeling pretty good about a few sentences in my new essay, at least, and starting to have some fun. Whew.

    Still feel like I have a long way to go to be back to my writer self, but this was good. Looking forward to next Friday.

    March 1, 2008
  5. Sounds like fun. I had a similar “writing date” with a friend of mine recently. We sat at Panera, drank tea, and plinked away on our laptops.

    As for Friday, other than a few changes to make for my editor, I spent most of the day NOT writing, in celebration of the long sleepless nights I put in the rest of the week to finish my book, which I turned in to the publisher on Thursday afternoon.

    March 2, 2008

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