Writing Tip Wednesday: Write two books at once.

I was reading this very interesting (and funny) post the other day by guest writer Ben. H. Winters over at Publishing Crawl all about his theory of rotating dessert. He suggests you write two books at once, and as someone who does this I would have to agree. Now I know it’s not for everyone, it depends on who you are as a writer, and how much time you have, but if you have multiple ideas simmering in your head and are dying to get them out, maybe this is something you could give a try if you have the time.

Ben says writing two books is something he has to do. Why? “Because as any writer will tell you, an IDEA for a book is like falling in love, it’s all wild emotion and headlong rush, but the ACTUAL ACT of writing a book is like building a relationship: it is joyous, slow, fragile, frustrating, exhilarating, painstaking, exhausting, worth it. So when I get through the lovey-dovey stuff on Project A and I’m deep into the difficult and complicated part, it is sheer anticipatory pleasure to have Projecet B, still in the pure-joy IDEA phase—waiting, patient, a temptation to which I can look forward.”

He calls it “The Theory of Rotating Dessert. Because you do, no matter how excited you are about your book when you first set out, you reach a point where you feel like it’s murder, it’s killing you, you hate it and you wish you’d never started. But there! There in the distance, far but not too far, is this other project, your delicious dessert, and the sight of it, the knowledge of it, will keep you going, maintain your excitement and your inspiration and your diligence until you get to the end.”

Agree, agree, agree! Editing is hard, right now I’m balancing a book I am rewriting while also writing a first draft of another novel, and I feel like I’ve been editing forever so when I go to my first draft it’s such a pleasure!

I would add to this to make sure you actually finish the books you are working on, not just start one and then another, and then another and another and never finish them.You won’t get your book published if it isn’t finished.

How I juggle my two novels at the moment is I write my main novel (the rewrite) during the week – I spend more time on this one because it has a self imposed deadline while the other one doesn’t ATM – and then on the weekends I work on the other novel. You might like to try it this way or you might like to try some other way that suits you better. Do a few experiments to find what works best for you.If you’ve got the time, I highly recommend that you give writing two books a shot.

You can read the full article here

Enjoy, and happy writing 🙂

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8 thoughts on “Writing Tip Wednesday: Write two books at once.

  1. I think I might give this a try. I might even go for the absolute insanity of three books (!) When I sent my current WIP away for editing, I started working on another idea. I only got a couple of chapters done, but I have the whole outline so it’s ready to pick up. And now that I’m going to be starting the querying process for the WIP, I’ve chose another idea to pursue for NaNoWriMo. So I’ll be working on a MG fantasy and a YA fantasy. And because I want to get it on the road, I want to get to the second book in the WIP series. So yeah, that will be three. With a day job. Oy! I think I am crazy 🙂 Thanks for the inspiration, though, Rochelle. Your fortnightly updates have shown me that it is possible to work on more than one project at once. I want to see whether I can actually manage it or not 😀

    1. It’s not for everyone, and I kind of envy your ability to focus on one project at a time, my mind is always filled with stories vying to get out, it’s frustrating.

  2. I agree completely. I am a portrait painter and guitar player. A change is as good as a rest. When I get bogged down with a painting or a piece of music, moving to another ongoing project is the ideal solution. ~ Dennis

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