2020 Writing Log, Part Four

– I posted Chapter 26 of Malice on AO3. This chapter was supposed to be twice as long, but I decided to split it into two chapters for ease of editing and serialization. I’m beginning to realize that a decently edited chapter of roughly 1,500 words is a good weekly goal for me.

– I edited Chapter 24, which I posted on FFN, and Chapter 25, which I queued for this coming weekend. I edited both chapters so extensively that it was almost line editing, and I added a bit of extra material as well. Neither chapter felt particularly rough when I initially posted it, but it’s amazing what you start to notice once you’ve put some distance between yourself and your story. The people who read these chapters on AO3 when they’re first posted are saints, and I’m infinitely grateful to them for their support.

– I’m still replying to my month-long backlog of comments on AO3. I’m really enjoying myself, but it’s hard to resist the temptation to write a complete four-paragraph essay in response to everyone letting them know how insightful they are and how much I respect and appreciate their comments.

– I started work on my second set of original short stories. More specifically, I edited all my notes into separate documents and gave each story a title. I also decided on the story order. I think it was Ariel Gore (a prolific anthology editor and contributor) who said that it’s the last story in a collection that gets the most casual attention and therefore has to be short and impactful, so I’ve tried to keep that in mind. I’m going to start writing the actual stories this week, and I’m looking forward to it. In all honesty, I’ve been looking forward to this for the past year, but I haven’t been able to find the time. One of the nice things about deciding to leave my current job is that it’s become much easier to carve an hour out of the day to write without feeling like a complete professional failure.

There are a few academic writing projects that I should have been working on this week, but I did! Not! Do! Any of them! I’m actually thinking of dropping two of these projects because… It’s not that I no longer care, but rather that I’m no longer interested in the unnecessary violence of formal peer review, especially not regarding a piece of writing that I won’t be compensated for and that will only be read by maybe a few dozen people. I no longer have to worry about building a CV, so I may as well concentrate my time and energy on a smaller number of academic writing projects that might actually benefit someone (including myself).

Instead of chipping away at academic articles and committee reports, I’ve been putting a lot of time, attention, and TLC into my classes, which are going extremely well this semester. I knew this would be the case, but it still managed to surprise me how much easier it’s become to teach and advise students now that I can treat teaching like a full-time job instead of a guilty pleasure relegated to the last item on my “To Do” list.