Tales From the Writing Desk

  • Post category:Writing
Mark Twain Quote Writing is easy All you have to do is cross out the wrong words

It’s time once again to check in on the chaos that is the Writing Desk! It’s been several weeks since my last update, so time to take a look at the progress on my Write, Rewrite, and Read goals and do some recalibrating.

As always the writing desk is covered in drafts, and notes, and outlines… and not a lot of finished work. I’m aiming to turn that around, so a lot of my focus right now is on resurrecting old stories.


Camp NaNoWriMo 2018 Writer Profile Photo

April’s big writing goal was 15,000 words for April Camp NaNoWriMo. Alas, I didn’t hit the goal with [NULL], but I did get the bones of something that might turn into a good short story… abet not the one I was intending to write. Which is the life of a panster, I suppose.

Even if I did make grand plans to not pants so hard this time.

I’ll be taking the 10k+ of a draft and reworking it, but only after it’s had some time to sit. I’m still halfway tempted to turn it into a graphic novel, but that requires human-drawing skills that I don’t have. Yet. *makes notes*

For the rest of May I have zero plans to start on new work outside of the Saturday Story Prompts (and custom eBook orders). I will be starting another MuseFic prequel for the July Camp NaNo come June, so I don’t feel so bad taking a break.


Master Fiction List

I have a lot of old writing. Some of it is worth salvaging (and some isn’t) and it’s high time I started getting the writing desk organized.

My goal for the rest of this month is to get all writing projects into my Google spreadsheet. I’m also starting a time tracking spreadsheet to see how long it really takes me to write. If I can figure out my work speed and work queue, then I can make a schedule. In theory.

I’d like to start finishing a short story or Saturday Story Prompt collection every month…

I’ll also continue working on a MuseFic that will finish up a proper rough draft of Chewtoys which is a short story set in the Whistling in the Dark universe. It’s going to be multichapter story on Wattpad, but I’ll be posting it here next week as a single post to hold to my new blogging rules.

I am still churning away on the rewrite of the Writing Prompts Book 1 (aka: Saturday Story Prompts – 2008, 2009, 2010). This was a larger project than I expected, so time to regroup.

My goal for May is to edit at least 10% of the existing prompts (19) and write enough new to end with 10% of the goal prompts (27). I’ll be pulling out the ‘bad’ prompts and tweaking the good ones to bring them up to current standards.

The discarded prompts go into the Bad Prompts book, which is turning out to be quite amusing. They might not be as useful as ‘good’ prompts, but you can still have a lot of fun playing around with them. Writing examples for the ‘how to use’ section has been a blast! ๐Ÿ™‚

The new prompts will be posted to the blog in the 2010’s in sets of five. This will keep the book in line with the others, where all of the prompts are available on the blog.


I’ve been meaning to put some serious effort into learning how to be a better writer. Over the years I’ve collected a lot of books (and eBooks) on writing, but I’ve never really studied them. So time for some book reviews!

The oldest ebook about writing in my library is You Are a Writer (So Start Acting Like One) by Jeff Goins, so that’s the one I’m going to start with. It looks like a fast read since the paperback edition is only 134 pages long. I’m not sure how long it will take to read on the Kindle, but I’m used to 300k+ fanfics, so ‘not long.’

I don’t really remember much about the book, but the Amazon reviews appear mixed. Some think it’s nothing but fluff and others find it inspiring… we’ll see.

Worst case, I end up with a blog post and an Amazon review. Best case, I learn things and might be buying more of his books! ๐Ÿ™‚

*rolls up sleeves* Away we go!

Martha Bechtel

My name is Martha Bechtel and I write fantasy and science fiction stories, paint small model horses silly colors, cast resin and plaster magnets, code random code (and Wordpress plugins)... Come on in and join in the fun!

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