Monday, April 8, 2013

What I've been working on...

Honestly, this post is more for me than for you, a way for me to sketch out some of what I've been working on; what I need to rework; and what I need to start with.

I will say this, though: for the past few weeks I've been following something called the Magic Spreadsheet, which is an attempt to gamify writing. ("Gamify"=use the points and reward system of games in a traditionally non-game setting.)

With the Magic Spreadsheet, the idea is that, if you write every day, it will become a habit. Instead of setting some huge goal at the end of the month (like NaNoWriMo's goal of 50k words), this game sets a very small goal every day: 250 words. And you get a point each day you write 250 words. Easy so far, right?

Now here's the habit-forming method of the Magic Spreadsheet: you get a point for each day you write and a point for each previous day you wrote in your chain. So if you write one day, you get two points--one for that day and one for your chain of, ahem, one day; if you write two days, you get three points--one for the writing, two for the two days in the chain; etc. Consequently, if you write every day, it's just raining points.

It's also helpful that this spreadsheet is all online for anyone to see. Which means you have social pressure as well as game pressure. Yay. All this pressure, there's got to be some diamonds around, right?


  1. The Wolves of Mars, TX (2nd draft: 5,889 words) (largely revised from 5,191 words)
  2. Mister Bear's Riddle Song (1st draft: 15,564 words)
  3. untitled early morning horror story (1st draft: 3,108 words)
To write:
  1. A co-written screenplay comedy-thriller about what a terrible idea it would've been for me to be hired as the CSI photographer of a small town in Texas (based on real life events that didn't happen)
  2. Users: an sf version of Gatsby, sort of
  3. Harold and the Scorpion People: a paranormal academic, rich-twit comedy
  4. We Hunt Monsters: a weird western with anti-heroes, like Blood Meridian plus Beowulf
And I cut out about seven more--I don't want to overwhelm you/me. In the past I would make a joke about how, instead of writing those stories, I could just photoshop a photo of my dog with a beret. But now I see what I've written and how much more I have to write, and I have to say, I can both write those stories and photoshop my dog.

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