The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

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The Sunday Circle is the weekly check-in where I ask the creative-types who follow this blog to weigh in about their goals, inspirations, and challenges for the coming week. The logic behind it can be found here. Want to be involved? It’s easy – just answer three questions in the comments or on your own blog (with a link in the comments here, so that everyone can find them).

After that, throw some thoughts around about other people’s projects, ask questions if you’re so inclined. Be supportive above all.

Then show up again next Sunday when the circle updates next, letting us know how you did on your weekly project and what you’ve got coming down the pipe in the coming week (if you’d like to part of the circle, without subscribing to the rest of the blog, you can sign-up for reminders via email here).


What am I working on this week?

Wading through the second act of the Ghost Western, which is in that horrible state where I don’t really know what’s going on and end up laying endless amounts of narrative pipe until I figure it out. My notebook drafts – not so much drafts as exceptionally long project outlines.

The goal, this week, is to actually get everyone out of town and heading into Hell.

What’s inspiring me this week?

I’ve been hitting the back-lists of The Allusionist podcast pretty hard this week, and it remains amazing every episode. There is always something I can take away, as a writer, from their discussions on language and semantics.

What part of my project an I avoiding?

I’m got to the point where I actually pick up the revision draft and work on, but…not for terribly long. Hoping this was just a factor of having the article deadline disrupting my routine a little last week, and I can move forward a little faster this week.

So how ’bout you, peeps? What are you up to this week?

  9 comments for “The Sunday Circle: What Are You Working On This Week?

  1. 14/02/2016 at 11:42 AM

    What am I working on this week? Queerish PNR. Chapter nine and rolling merrily along – except I’ve reached a key scene, which is both exciting and nerve-wracking. However, I’m meeting a friend tomorrow, and we’ll probably get some writing done then.

    What’s inspiring me this week? This week’s been light on inspiration and heavy on distraction. I finished Snow Crash, which was great. I’m now trying to decide which of the many books on my to-read list comes next!

    What part of my project am I avoiding? That key and scary scene! But it’s only been a couple of days, and tomorrow should get me moving again. I’m sort of struggling to write on not-specifically-writing-days at the moment, but that’s somewhat cyclical. I am in love with my novel all over again, which is a nice feeling, especially when you’re right in the middle.

    • 14/02/2016 at 3:30 PM

      Snow Crash is so good! If you haven’t read it, I’d recommend Diamond Age as a follow-up. I like Neal Stephenson’s treatment of female characters in both books, contrasted to say Altered Carbon, which I’ve been reading as part of the whole cyberpunk kick but am now contemplating throwing in the bin thanks to some pretty misogynistic writing.

      Regarding the resistance on non-writing days… you may already be aware of this LC, but have you bumped into the idea of ‘touching the keys’ at all? The principle is that every day, as long as you do something toward a given practice, no matter how small, it’s progress that builds a strong routine without necessarily taking up a lot of time. The name comes from the idea of even just touching the keys as a way to ground yourself in the idea of learning piano. It’s been on my mind a bit recently because some of the practices I have to train regularly as an actor have fallen by the wayside due to moving house taking up time and energy, which has left me disconnected from that truth a little, as pretentious as it might sound to frame it that way.

      Does that make sense at all?

  2. 14/02/2016 at 3:42 PM

    Is Allusionist something that only writers would get something out of, Pete, or do you think there’s something there for anyone interested in wielding language?

    Also, I applaud your goal for Ghost Western this week. That sounds goddamned fabulous. On a related note, have you ever run into the story of Centralia in Pennsylvania before? I learned about it for the first time this week on a podcast, and my mind was slightly blown.

  3. 14/02/2016 at 4:03 PM

    What am I working on this week?
    After a rather harrowing weekend of getting all of the recording infrastructure back in place (and doing a surprise gig! Wahoo!) I’m working today on picking the threads of everything back up – doing a full sweep of my current to-do list and projects, as well as getting on top of critical emails to make sure I’m not the blocker on anything. This weekend coming, I’ll be recording for a video game gig, and doing research for one of the tent pole projects for this year. Yay library trip!

    What’s inspiring me this week?
    I’m continuing to mainline the archives of The Dollop ( and it’s both hilarious and fascinating. It’s proving that you can’t judge the impact of someone’s life (or their character, ultimately) until all is said and done.

    The concept of grit and persistence in artistic endeavours has been weighing on my mind. Sticking at what you love. Examples like Anthony and Ashly Burch ( who’ve turned what they love into careers. It’s kind of been a bit of a background mantra while the batteries have been low thanks to moving.

    The flipside of moving though is that I now have a workspace that is a joy to be in, has air conditioning, and I feel like I have the space and permanency to look forward at what’s in the next phase of things, and think big, which is exciting.

    What part of my project am I avoiding?
    I’m going to get to the critical stuff today, but likely not the full sweep I had planned. After a string of late nights getting things sorted leading into the weekend, I’m trying not to beat myself up about that, and instead focus on having the batteries charged again, while trying not to be too soft on myself.

  4. Karina
    14/02/2016 at 9:37 PM

    What am I working on this week?
    Well I had a lovely character epiphany last week. After writing and rewriting the same scene where we first meet him, I finally had that moment where character motivation and plot aligned. Now I just need to run with that and stitch this opening into what I had before. That’ll be like doing Lego and I always enjoy it.

    What’s inspiring me this week?
    The husband and I have started watching Outlander (finally). We’re loving it – especially as we pour a wee dram of firewater and eat oatcakes and cheese while we watch to get into the spirit of things. Seeing history told as fiction was a revelation for the man – as someone who has always read historical fiction, I found his astonishment to be very endearing. (His comment: I’ve learned more about the Jacobite rebellion and have more sympathy for the Scottish Clans from watching this than from going to Culloden!)

    What part of my project am I avoiding?
    Getting too stuck in. Honestly, I’m happier when I’m writing. So I have to keep doing it but when I get too lost in a tale, I can too easily shut out annoying other intrusions such as real life and that isn’t a good thing right now as we’re supposed to be working on a new business.

  5. 14/02/2016 at 10:36 PM

    I’m in Sydney this weekend, typing on phone, so in brief:

    Working on: synopsis for uni project; editing; picture book manuscript.

    Inspiring me: stern career talkings-to by two artists; people’s working spaces, especially the purpose-built cabin-at-the-end-of-a-garden I’m sleeping in tonight; hanging out with freelancers.

    Avoiding: Editing; identifying synopsis problems; choosing a picture book idea.

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