My weekend project was to print out everything I’ve written in the last four years and organize it into binders. I was sick of having a pile of word documents on my computer and no quick or easy way to navigate them. Plus, I wanted to pool all of my unfinished ideas into one place and see if there was anything worth salvaging.
The white binder is all of my miscellaneous work over the last four years. The pink binder is everything I have written on one specific fantasy novel that will probably go nowhere since I’m a bit stuck on it. Ah well – we all need those failed attempts, right? I’ve been writing it since I was 10, so… it’s probably best to let it go. But I was stunned to discover just HOW MUCH work I had done on that project.
We went through an entire package of printer paper and had to get more. The woman at the store was like “What are you printing, a book??” and I was like “… Yeah, kind of.” Haha. We also destroyed two entire ink cartridges. This was a HUGE endeavor.
After printing it all out, I went through and read it all, making notes about which pieces had potential, which ones just needed to be edited, and which needed a full overhaul.
I ended up finding one piece that I wrote for writing practice that worked as a standalone piece of flash fiction! I edited it and submitted it last night. 😀 I also found about a dozen pieces that I had completely forgotten about, but which would make great stories with a bit of outlining and editing.
I’ve found that a common problem I have is I come up with these really fantastic premises for sci-fi or fantasy worlds and I get really excited about the worldbuilding aspects of it, but I never outline a plot or anything that could coalesce into a real story. A lot of these were just a rambly premise blurb and a few scattered scenes – barely any characters or plot to speak of. I’m going to sit down and do some hardcore outlining of those to see if they can become full-fledged stories.
I’m really proud of this, and know it’ll be a really useful tool! I’m not completely done. This is only the word documents I had on my laptop (from the last four years). I’d have to do some serious digging to find my older projects from college and high school. Although, honestly, how valuable are those projects going to be? Hahaha. 😉 I mean, you never know. But still, I think this is probably plenty to work on for right now.
Bonus picture… I cuddled up with my new binder to sleep and my husband, Chris, took a picture and showed everyone on Facebook… 😛 So you might as well see it, too!