Welcome to Tuesday Tips - a weekly blog post for busy writers!
Whether writing a novel, newspaper article, or short blog post it's easy to bogged down or stumped when you don't know exactly what to write next. Often, it is good to save a spot and fast forward to what you do know to write. You may find the answer comes very naturally as you continue writing.
How can you save a spot to revisit later?
First – Make the phrase, scene, or position of the unsolved wording easy to find. Turn on your highlighter or change the color of your font. I use red. It's like an emergency signal telling me I haven't finished this part of my document.
Second – Leave a short message to remind you what needs to happen. Determine how or why Jim arrives at the party at this exact moment.
Third – Use a word or short phrase that is easily searchable (like we discussed in this post) to help locate the unfinished paragraphs. For instance, you may need to create a character's name or add a critical scene. Use "Need Name" or "Need Scene." When the name or scene pops into your head, quickly search the phrase and replace it with the newly inspired info!
While writing this historical non-fiction book, I often found myself wondering how I was going to connect one portion of the book to another. How can I get Louisa back to Baldwin Stables? I knew where Louisa was and where I wanted her to be, but I needed a believable transition that didn't bore the reader or happen too quickly. In this instance, I opened a new file and titled it Louisa back to Baldwin Stables. Then as ideas or research opportunities arose, I included them in the document for future fleshing out.
Fourth - Keep a separate list, hand written or on a spreadsheet, of Things I need to Fix and then mark them off when completed.
Lastly - Use whatever works for you. The key is to keep up your writing momentum by avoiding this particular distraction. (Read this blog post about Minimizing Distractions.)
What do you think about this #tuesdaytip? Was it helpful? Feel free to leave a comment, and as always ...