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

Sunday Circle Banner

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).

MY CHECK-IN

What am I working on this week?

This week I settled into a weekly routine where I split my focus between 3-5 different writing projects at different stages of completion, moving each of them forward. It’s utterly counter-intuitive in many different ways, but I realised I’d need to write about 3,500 words every week day to hit my current deadlines and it’s the easiest way to complete them.

Which means, on the slate this week: moving into the second half of the second act for Project Beeman, hitting the midpoint of my first PhD novella, Project Red, and the end of the first act on Project Gladiator. I’ve also got some incidental design and research that needs doing for a little thing that’s in my bujo as Project Countdown.

What’s inspiring me this week?

I’ve been re-reading bits and pieces of Joe Lansdale’s Hap and Leonard series, as he remains one of those writers where I always see something new in how he’s done it.

I also sat down to start watching Wynona Earp on Netflix. I’d heard it was good, in that general way that the internet latches ono good shows, but it’s actually quite extraordinary (and possibly a show that is custom-built to appeal to Kevin). The last few years have a seen a lot of shows launch that work in the same terrain as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but Earp takes that initial brief and essentially creates a modern Western with some great characters and really tight writing.

What action do I need to take?

I have a small list of things that need to be done for Project Countdown that I keep putting off because a) they’re going to cost money I haven’t fully budgeted for yet, and b) they’re going to feel like I’m getting closer to doing this particular project and it’s somewhat scary. The next step is a lot of google searching, form-filling, and making a long-term decision.

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

  1. 03/09/2017 at 12:06 PM

    Peter: do you find context-switching between the different projects much of a strain? Really curious to hear how you manage that – is it the separation of tasks on a daily basis?

    Thanks for the prompt re: Wynona Earp, too – I’d heard of it before, but for some reason hadn’t latched onto it. Will definitely check it out, given that we’re post-Defenders and post-GoT now, and The Expanse season 2 is still a little ways off.

    • 03/09/2017 at 2:00 PM

      They’re all writing projects, so there’s less contextual shift than it looks on the surface. I basically write one thing until I hit wordcount, find a place to stop where I’ve still got a good idea of what’s coming next, then move on to the next project. Since they’re all very different in terms of genre, length, and voice, it’s relatively easy to keep them all their own thing.

      • 03/09/2017 at 7:27 PM

        Interesting! I find if I’m switching from one writing project to another I need to do something to clear my head after finishing on one and before starting the other. Usually I’ll do some physical activity (go for a walk, do a bit of housework) or else I’ll find voices/ideas from one project intruding into the other.

  2. 03/09/2017 at 7:37 PM

    Can you check your inbound comments, Peter? For some reason the website is continually eating my post for the week.

    • 03/09/2017 at 8:18 PM

      my link to my post isn’t showing up either…. but when I tried to post it again it said it had already been posted so now I’m just confused…

      • 03/09/2017 at 8:30 PM

        Maybe using another browser – I found Chrome was choking on anything more complex than a one or two line response.

        Peter: if you’re interested in shifting over to Disqus at all, more than happy to help!

        • 04/09/2017 at 8:41 PM

          I give up – tried on both chrome & firefox & it just tells me I’ve already posted that comment but the comment doesn’t show.

          • 04/09/2017 at 10:54 PM

            Safari has a download on PC – maybe try that? The other thing I tried was removing any HTML at _all_ from my post before posting it – so I had to get rid of all my a hrefs and just put URLs inline in the post.

    • 05/09/2017 at 9:03 AM

      Sorry. I was away from a PC for the last three days and the phone app doesn’t show me the stuff that’s been shuttled over to spam. It looks like a big block of HTML links came through as a typo, so Askimet went on high alert and skipped the usual approval queue.

      Taking a look at options to keep it from happening again today.

  3. 03/09/2017 at 7:46 PM

    What am I working on this week?
    Last week was a bit of a messy week mood and energy-wise, but I’m starting this week on much more stable ground. This week is a LOT of meetings and catchups (well, a lot for me – typically 2 per day) around other work. That includes two meetings with producers interested about the Tentpole Animated Series Project, and some 1on1s with people in my circle. Now that I’ve finished updating my contacts database, AND I FINALLY HAVE MY COMMERCIAL DEMO, spending some time this week on lead generation, both for video games, and commercial work.

    What’s inspiring me this week?
    Work getting out there to good feedback is definitely inspiring me this week – I’ve voiced multiple characters in Battle Chef Brigade (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6hjNL-cEE_o) which is showing at PAX West at the moment. Getting out of my comfort zone and remembering that constant effort in areas I’m less comfortable in will open up new avenues – doing a lot more physical training at the moment to build a solid platform for motion capture and performance capture work, and when I work at it, I move the needle. Which might seem obvious, but I’ve been carrying a narrative of I’m no good at physical work for some time.

    I’m finding at the moment that the brain is really keen to latch onto the first few steps of an idea for silly side projects, which is nice – it’s great to have that buzz of potential. Just trying to commit to a path forward to make sure that something comes of that initial inspiration.

    I’ve been finding that I’m starting to get more traction and more time in the day for working by allocating low-energy tasks (like typing up notes) in the evenings, and instead of morning planning, setting a tentative schedule for the next day during reflecting on the day that happened instead – instead of working through the initial morning fog and any feelings of “Don’t wanna!” I can just temper down the aspirational mindset at the end of the day which sees everything I wanted to achieve but didn’t, and pare down that list to something that feels achievable for tomorrow. Then it’s like a whole different, more awake person has set me a work schedule when I start the new day.

    Media-wise, I’ve started listening to the audiobook of They Thought They Were Free (http://www.press.uchicago.edu/Misc/Chicago/511928.html). As an act of self-care, it’s tremendous. Understanding how a nation can shift from democracy into the horrors of the Third Reich is far more useful to me than railing at the creeping injustice in the US and elsewhere at the moment. This interview with Michael Kelly of House of Cards (https://www.backstage.com/interview/emmy-nominee-michael-kelly-stopping-self-doubt-auditions-and-paying-it-forward) really helped quieten the doubt and panic around long-term goals this week, too.

    What action do I really need to take?
    Both lead generation and the number of auditions going out the door need to increase in order to help increase income, so I’m keeping an eye on those stats in the spreadsheet. And while I’m still closing out work on the film (aaaalmost done!) I need to still allocate time to getting more and better auditions out the door.

    • 04/09/2017 at 8:38 PM

      Sounds like you’ve had an excellent week, Kevin. Very productive! Keep building on that positive feedback.

  4. Anonymous
    04/09/2017 at 8:09 AM

    3rd time lucky?

Leave a Reply