Book In A Week- The Power of FunThe Power of FUN
Do you remember playing make believe as a child? Wasn't it fun? Wasn't it amazing? There were no rules. Anything you could imagine could happen. Can you remember without smiling? I can't.
We all grew up and supposedly grew out of such childish games. Only...only...the longer I've been a writer the more I've come to realize the power in having FUN. And that's the philosophy behind Book in a Week. It's about, for one week, recapturing that magic. It's about, for one week, letting go of all the rules and shoulds and musts and market info and just writing. Writing from the depths of our hearts—without constantly second guessing ourselves.
It's binding and gagging and shoving that inner critic into the closet and padlocking the door. For just one week.
It's saying to ourselves—and to those around us: I AM a writer and writing matters!
It's about discovering what we would let ourselves write if we could recapture the magic of childhood make believe. And the fascinating thing is that often we find ourselves writing not only faster but better than we ever have before. Just recently I've heard from two people who did BIAW with me and their work is now under contract. I can't tell you how happy that makes me feel!
The tag line Book in a Week is catchy. But really, the philosophy can be adapted to any block of time—however short—where you are going to let yourself go and truly write from the heart and not censor yourself. It could be a few hours, an afternoon, a weekend—or a week. All it requires is that you don't second guess or reread what you wrote—for that chosen block of time. (Very few of us can reread without itching to fix things—and that's a deadly trap because often our muse knows things about the story it hasn't told our rational minds and the very things we change or take out may turn out to be what would have been the best parts of our story had we risked keeping them.)
For the basics of how to set up a BIAW, I've got a couple of handouts up on my website: www.aprilkihlstrom.com Essentially, you clear the decks, so to speak, get your planning done ahead of time, then gather a few people who will post to and support each other, then write for one week. Write every chance you get, as fast as you can, no second guessing or rereading or rewriting what you wrote during that week. In part, the idea is to discover where and when and what and how you write best.
If you doubt the power of writing this way, let me just mention that recently I've heard from two different people who took my online BIAW class over the spring or summer. Both now have their work under contract.
So....what if you decided today, this afternoon, this week, you're going to write the story the way YOU really want to write it without whispering to yourself—I can't put THAT in THIS kind of book—and then did it? What if you let out the mischievous imps of childhood imagination and risked doing the things you aren't supposed to be able to do? What kind of marvelous story might you create—and what if you could have FUN creating it?