Daily Writing Tip 29 of 100, Triage

For one hundred days, I’m going to post a writing tip each day. I have a whole bookshelf full of writing books and I want to do some reading and increased studying of this valuable resource. This will help me keep track of anything I’ve learned, and help motivate me to keep going. If anyone has a favorite tip of their own to add, contact me. I’d love to put it up here.

Today’s tip – Triage

Source – Revision, By Kit Reed

If consistent negative readings and a number of rejections have shaken your faith in a piece of work, then it’s probably time to cut your losses. This doesn’t mean throwing it out. It means putting it away. In the time you spend working on something new, work that’s put aside will either get stronger in your imagination or it will die quietly. Either way, you win.

I have a growing pile of half-written stories. Most of these have outlines with their full plot pretty much planned out. When I started each of these I was enthusiastic, each and every one. I felt that I had an idea that had to be written. But as the page count grew the ideas became stale and eventually spoiled. I said to myself, “What the hell was I thinking?”

Periodically I go back to this list of half-written nonsense in the hope, as the author above suggests, that they will become stronger in my imagination.

They never do.