This is the blog of children's book author and elementary school teacher, Stacy Barnett Mozer. I blog about my own writing journey, the journey of other kidlit authors, my classroom, and talk about books. Thanks for stopping by. Your thoughts are always welcome (and encouraged).

Monday, July 23, 2012

When Two Stories Call

In two days I enter the writing portion of my summer: three and a half uninterrupted weeks when both of my kids are at camp.

I can't wait!

My only problem? TWO works in progress can't wait either. Every time I sit down to start planning one, the other's voice gets stronger. If I switch, the same thing happens in reverse.

So what am I to do? Work on both? One in the morning and one in the afternoon? Lock one up until the other one is finished? But how do I decide?

What do you do when more than one story calls to you?

Monday, July 9, 2012

Silencing the WIP What Ifs...

When I first started writing I wrote because I had to, because I loved it, because the voices in my head could not be quiet until I wrote them down. Now I find that I am filled with what ifs...

What if it is not as good as the last book I wrote?
What if the character has the same voice as my last character?
What if I can't figure out where it is going?
What if no one likes it?
What if my critique group likes it, but my agent hates it?
What if my agent likes it, but editors don't?
What if another idea was a better one to follow?

What if...


So now that I got that all down I am going to print it, rip it up into a million pieces, and go back to listening to the voices in my head, writing them down, and realizing that most of my writing happens in revision anyway.

Do you have what ifs? What do you do to silence them?

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Using Track Changes Without Losing Your Mind

Track Changes is a mode in Word that allows you to keep track of every insertion, deletion, space removal, and even make notes on your writing. It can be a great way to share your thoughts with others in a critique group or show your agent/editor what changes you have made.

It can also drive you crazy.

If you are like me and you revise the same sentence or paragraph over and over, track changes can make your manuscript look like gobbley goop. Red marks, arrows, boxes, highlights all over the place. Here is a tip for using track changes without losing your mind:

1. First step is to turn on track changes. Do that by going to TOOLS>TRACK CHANGES>HIGHLIGHT - Now every change you make will be tracked.

2. To the far left on the reviewing toolbar that says track changes, there is a pull down menu that says FINAL SHOWING MARKUP. Switch this to FINAL and your highlights have now disappeared from view. They are still there, but you can now work in a clean, clear, space. You can also use this pulldown menu to look back at the original document.

Do you use track changes and have other tricks/suggestions? If not, how do you see what you've changed in your work?