Annnnnnd I’m Back on the Timer

Darkwing Duck

The other day I got frustrated because I didn’t balance my schedule changes appropriately. So? I turned to my trusty friend the timer, opened up a document, and started to write. I had three interruptions in the first five minutes (all of which were my fault) but the numbers blaring on my screen reminded me that I had to stick to it.

I wrote 1,000 words in a half an hour without even realizing it. Had to stop because I was typing so fast I kept sticking on the Ctrl+ key which made my keyboard go all kinds of wonky — twice — but hopefully that’s all sorted out now. I think I’d have a meltdown if my new keyboard was batty after I spent three days setting it up, but after some investigation, I think this was a case of user error. Sigh, where’s Tron when you need him. Eh?

This free Countdown Timer works really well and there’s a full screen option available for those of you who have a second monitor. Combined with a Task Timer app from Chrome, these two items will help me break out my day into smaller chunks, even when I’m working on larger projects.

Although word count is important, you will notice a change to my status updates at the bottom of the blog screen. Due to the new 100 day announcement I posted earlier, I’m going to list the type of projects I’m working on. Mind you, I’m under NDA for some and others I don’t want to tell you about for professional reasons. I know other authors are comfortable talking about what they submit for open calls, but I’m not. I’d rather focus on the work at hand then think about publications like little notches on a computer screen.

For me, once I get past the research phase, I worry less about word count because I track progress by date moreso than the number of words. Deadlines are my goals and with some projects, like short stories, there really isn’t a set word count. It’s done when it’s done. Sometimes that means I have to go through several revisions; sometimes I’m good after the first draft.

Like any other working writer out there, this job (part time, any time, full time or hobby time) requires balancing more than one plate. Some gigs work out; some don’t. The trick is to keep at it and the timer is one tool to help me to just that. 🙂

    Mood: This grasshopper is focused.
    Caffeinated Beverages Consumed: It’s kind of hazy…
    Work-Out Minutes Logged Yesterday: Half an hour walk.
    Yesterday’s Projects: RPG, blogging
    In My Ears: Movie Soundtrack Playlist (Currently Listening to Battlestar Galactica)
    Game Last Played: PicCross 3D
    Movie Last Viewed: Limitless
    Book Last Read: The Encyclopedia of 500 Spells
    Latest Artistic Project: Crystal Medallion pendant in gold
    Latest Release: Strange, Dead Love for Vampire: the Requiem



Monica Valentinelli is a writer, editor, and game developer. Her portfolio includes stories, games, comics, essays, and pop culture books.

In addition to her own worlds, she has worked on a number of different properties including Firefly, Vampire: the Masquerade, Shadowrun, Hunter: the Vigil, Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn, and Robert E. Howard’s Conan.

Looking for Monica’s books and games that are still in print? Visit Monica Valentinelli on Amazon’s Author Central or a bookstore and game store near you.

Want to Interview or Hire Me? Send Fan Mail?

Would you like to hire me? Because my projects and manuscripts are in flux, I am always open to discussing new opportunities with publishers and studios. As a full-time writer, I spend a portion of my time seeking new gigs–so don’t be afraid to reach out. If you’re interested, please e-mail me via my Contact Page. I typically reply to work-related e-mails within one-to-two business days.

Want an interview? If you’d like to interview me or request a guest blog post, please connect with me via the contact page, too. Due to time constraints and other communicative concerns, I typically don’t follow up on requests via social media.

Keen on sending fan mail? I am also happy to engage with readers and fans. Please note that I am unable to reply satisfactorily to certain types of queries related to the companies I work for due to the agreements I typically sign. If you have a question about a TV show or a line of books, the best way to get your answer is to contact the studio or publisher directly.

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