Back at it

From Thursday to Sunday, I had extra time. Time while my son was in Anaheim, totally kicking it with the rest of his jazz band, the symphonic band, the string orchestra, and the choir–who all placed in their competitions. So much so that their high school took home the school award for the whole shebang.

We temporarily interrupt our regular programming to bring you a Mom moment.

Anyway….the thing about having your kid away for a few days AND knowing it’s pretty good odds he’s having a fantastic time, is that you are free to enjoy YOUR time. There’s something about unscheduled days that–even if you spend time sleeping in, time doodling around Facebook, time shopping and eating and movie-ing with your husband–makes it feel like you have so many more hours to spend…writing.

I sat with my historical novel this weekend. I worked through just one-and-a-half of the worksheets in Maass’ Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook, but I went deeper into those worksheets than I have a in a long, long time. I had Scrivener open the whole time, because scene ideas were popping up all over the place, along with connections between different character arcs and various plotlines. Ideas came to me when I wasn’t at the computer, which–honestly–just doesn’t happen to me as much as I’d like.

What did it all do for me? Well, yes, it brought me back to the love state with this WIP.

It reminded me what being relaxed and recharged is really about.

And it brought me back to a stronger level of commitment to this story and, frankly, to my writing.

To putting that butt into the chair and to showing up. Not necessarily to scheduling an hour here and an hour there, or to stressing myself out if that hour doesn’t happen, but to wanting to step into this world of words and hang out. And being open to seeing what comes from it.


  1. you are reminding me (over and over again) how I need to get back to the Maas workbook. Glad it was profitable for you!


    • beckylevine says:

      I am probably harping on it a lot, Carol! I promised I’d work all the way through, in depth, before trying to go back to what was truly a mess. Things are untangling!


  2. This is terrific, Becky!

    Some day I must take a look at that workbook. It seems to be so good, judging from your comments about it.


    • beckylevine says:

      Beth, I think the thing is that you really have to push yourself to do everything, every exercise, and to get yourself to take it as far past the basic instructions as you can. If he tells me to figure out three characters, I’m making myself do the steps with ALL the characters. If he says to come up with three plot steps, I’m making myself brainstorm as many as I think are needed. I didn’t do this before, and it didn’t take me as far in understanding the story as I needed to do. I’m giving myself no outs this time around!


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