It’s been a while since I last read Stephen King’s book, ON WRITING, but I have read it twice. The thing that has always stuck with me the most is his advice about writing every day and hitting your target, no matter how small you set it. Right now, I’ve set my target for 1,000 words a day. No excuses. For me, that’s a reasonable target. Your target might be 500 words or 5,000 words. We don’t have to compare. Having a bigger target doesn’t mean anything except that perhaps you have maid services, a nanny, and a husband who travels Monday through Friday. But I digress.
I also enjoy King’s advice about putting characters into a situation and helping them out of it. He’s not big on plotting and neither am I. So perhaps I like his advice because it suits the way I already write. I always have a “big idea” about my book. It is important for me to understand the basic theme of my story and to work out some basic components: characters and their stories, the main conflict, sub-conflicts, and setting. After that, I like to dive in and see where it takes me. You can probably guess that I don’t use an outline. I usually create a bit of an outline when I’m nearly done so that I can evaluate the text for inconsistencies and then write my synopsis.
I’m working on the second book in my new series of murder mysteries. I managed to stay on task over the weekend and for me, that’s huge. How glad am I to land on Monday morning with more than 2,000 words added to my manuscript? Have you seen Snoopy dance on Schroeder’s little piano? That about sums it up. Sorry for the Peanuts reference, we watched Charlie Brown Christmas last night. Speaking of Charlie Brown Christmas, I am so totally right there with Lucy as the Christmas Queen. But again I digress.
I titled this post about Stephen King always being right. That’s probably not true for everyone but for me, he is a hero. I promise, even if you don’t love his books as much as I do, you’ll enjoy ON WRITING. And Stephen, if you are reading this post, I’d just like to thank you for your First Editions of limited releases. I’ve sold two and bought the most beautiful piece of jewelry with the proceeds. Cheers!