Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Writer's Wednesday: Writing resolutions 2014

PHS Editor Michelle Styles examines some of her writing resolutions for 2014

Most years when I make resolutions about writing they tend to be very speicific -- number of words to write a day or number of books I wanted written that year.
Somehow the words per day thing never quite works. I have developed some good habits like noting down how many words I've written but some days words don't flow and some days I have to do other things like AA's (proof reading).
The number of books/manuscripts can be good, but sometimes I've had to totally revise manuscripts several times. It is ALWAYS worth it to revise (when given the opportunity) but I don't feel they can be counted as seperate manuscripts.
This year my major goal is to deliver a more polished manuscript to my editors. I really want to work on making it ready -- this means getting rid of one of my huge faults -- unintended REPETITION.
Unintended repetition kills tension dead. Sometimes you do need to foreshadow things (for example making sure you show that the heroine can actually use a sword, before she has to defend hers and the hero's life in a battle with the expert swordsman of a villian). But sometimes (and this is particularly true for me) there is this unconscious repetition of effect and it muddies the read. One plus one  equals one half, not two where writing is concerned. It is about trusting your writing to get the right message across. A lot of my revision process is spent getting rid of the mud that my repetition habit causes.
This year I want to get rid of the mud and tension killers BEFORE I send the manuscript in.
It is my one resolution.

What are other people's?

Michelle Styles writes warm, witty and intimate historical romance for Harlequin Historical. Her latest Paying the Viking's Price was published in November 2013. Her next one The Return of the Viking Warrior will be published in May 2014. YOu can find out more about Michelle and her book on


  1. Great post Michelle! So good I'm off to take some repetition out of my current WIP that can better be left to my reveal scene!

  2. Great post, Michelle! I write for Harlequin Intrigue (first book out April 2014, next four out in early 2015) but most of my writing resolutions still have to do with word counts. But what you're saying about fixing a reoccurring problem in my writing really make sense. Thanks!