Did Extra on SILVER DOOR Today

Got pretty close to 14,000 words done today. Why go over my 10,000-word goal? Because I had a couple of fairly clean chapters, and I know I’m not far from hitting the massacre, where I started ripping holes in the manuscript and writing cryptic little notes to myself like, “Write new scene, include monster, silver door, and (X) subtheme.” When I hit those sections, the book goes from being revision to being first draft PLUS revision, and takes a lot more time, and gets a lot meaner.

So covering extra ground today seemed like a good plan. And I had Jean to hang out with online, doing tens with me. We had a pretty productive day.

Tomorrow, it’ll be into the deep mess.

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and self-publish my new ones.

7 comments… add one
  • hollylisle Mar 10, 2008 @ 12:43

    Matt, I got the ten minute thing from Natalie Goldberg’s book Writing Down the Bones. I’d already written a bunch of books when I found it, and a lot of what she recommended just didn’t work for me. But that… that was pure gold, and I’ve used it ever since, and built a lot of what I do around it.

  • MattScudder Mar 10, 2008 @ 10:50

    Some of the most innocent searches just weren’t meant to be made on Google, Vanity. The web is a strange and scary place. 😉

    Holly: Do you have an egg timer surgically implanded to your arm yet? 🙂 But seriously, I love doing tens when I’m pounding out first draft. I had no idea I could write so fast and actually write GOOD stuff at that speed. But I thought doing rewrites with the timer might get too distracting. Perhaps not.

    Where did you learn about doing tens like this? Was this just something you adapted yourself from timed writing? It’s pretty amazing how the practice can focus your thinking.

  • hollylisle Mar 10, 2008 @ 9:18

    Vanity–“doing tens” is setting a timer and writing like one possessed for ten minutes. “Hard tens” means doing this over and over again, without stopping to talk, check e-mail, surf the internet, or much of anything else besides the occasional trip to the bathroom. (Which should be accomplished in less than ten. 😉 ).

    You can do other things in tens, too, and I do.

  • PolarBear Mar 10, 2008 @ 9:07

    There’s nothing better than having someone to run tens with. And you’re the best. Thanks, again!

  • vanity Mar 10, 2008 @ 7:43

    Forgive my ignorance, but what are tens? I just googled the term, but that was rather inconclusive (did you mean to search for “doing teens”?)

  • hollylisle Mar 10, 2008 @ 7:28

    I LIVE in tens.

  • MattScudder Mar 9, 2008 @ 19:52

    So you do the tens during revision too? Interesting.

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