Making Old New

With social distancing and sequestering still high on the priority ladder, it might be a good time to dig through the closet/flash drive and unearth that writing project you’ve been meaning to finish or thought was so bad that it was beyond repair.

Dust Them Off!

Pull those unfinished projects out and see which one jumps to the head of the line, begging for your attention. Give it a new, fresh view and the attention it deserves to get it up and running again. Perhaps it needs a plot adjustment or a new character added. Maybe there’s an existing character that needs an attitude adjustment in order to get things back on track and moving forward. Maybe it needs to go in another direction; your characters will probably be willing to talk, now that they’ve been released from their time-out.

Never Give Up!

Sure, some of that stuff sitting in that dusty box might not be your best work, but there are always bits and pieces to glean from those early pieces. If you don’t think the story itself is salvageable, pull those bits that you like and start again. It might be a setting you loved, a character who has potential, or a specific item (ring, scent, food, etc.) that triggered the story itself. Nothing is ever totally lost!

Make a Plan!

Give your recently-unearthed project the time and attention it deserves, even if you already have something you’re working on. They are ready and willing to share whatever time you can devote to them. Maybe it will be one week for a current work and the next will be the resurrected work. Do whatever works for you. Bottom line… you’ve got some good stuff there that you invested a lot of time and effort in, and it would be a shame to see it go to waste.

I’m ready and willing to admit that this blog hit close to home. My daughter kept asking me about “that middle-grade mystery you wrote,” and I realized that it was time to get it off the flash drive and into the hands of readers. It’s a good story and even won an RPLA (Royal Palm Literary Award). With the permission of my current novel-in-progress, I dusted it off and spent a lot of time editing and reading it. Over and over. Now, it’s ready. When this one is in the hands of readers, there are more in the closet, waiting their turn.

Image credit: Anne K. Hawkinson

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