"How do you come up with your ideas?"
"Where do you write?"
"What will my favorite character do next?"
"Will you hit me with these flounder paddles I found on the Internet?"
Okay, so maybe not the last one, but I really wanted to use Jodi's "Fun With Flounders" tag.
Some authors have really set schedules. I know some that get up and write five to ten thousand words a day. Some of them have intricate plotting boards with highlighters and post-its. Some have book bibles where they keep track of all the secrets of their characters and some even have maps drawn of their worlds.
When I try and plot it looks something like this....
When I do manage to plot or get something settled in my brain as to how it will go, my characters give me the middle finger and take me in a completely different direction.
I gave up trying to control the voices in my head a long time ago. I assume at some point I will be able to plot effectively, but right now, it seems like more work to write a plot that will be mocking me from my notebook when it doesn't turn out at all like those "brilliant" ideas I wrote down.
The hardest thing that I am dealing with as a published author is managing multiple projects at once. Depending on publisher there can be a significant amount of lag time between when the initial rough draft of a book gets submitted for review, and when it hits an e-reader or paper copy.
During that lag time authors are writing another draft, editing a third, doing promo work for the books that are already out, filling out forms, writing a synopsis or two, and trolling Pinterest under the guise of "research". Try and do all that while writing down all the voices in your head. It's not easy.
Me? I am still learning the juggling act.
My muse keeps me on my toes, and never performs when asked. I let life carry me away a bit more than I should sometimes. But I keep my Keurig stocked, down a few cups of coffee and I get back at it...eventually.
Right now I am biting my nails while I wait to hear back about the status of my Hart Clan Hybrids book 3 from my editor. I am working on a fun project with the other Lusty Linguists that blog here, and I am looking for a home for my first attempt at Contemporary Romance.
Will I ever be the disciplined authors I adore and admire? Will I get those time management skills that I envy? Only time will tell...but don't hold your breath. I couldn't find time to take that CPR class either, so I can't save you if you pass out.
What about you? Are you a planner and someone who always sticks to a list? Or are you someone like me who ends up accomplishing everything but what you put on your list?
Let's chat, because I really need an excuse to stay online and refresh Twitter.