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Group Questions? > Can you work on more than one project at a time?

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message 1: by Kevin (new)

Kevin Cole (kevin_cole) For me, it depends. If we're talking fiction and non-fiction - say a novel with the occasional essay - I'm fine by that. But two fiction projects at once? Forget it. My brain's not strong enough.


message 2: by Sarah (new)

Sarah Roberts | 616 comments I have never been able to focus on one thing at a time. I currently have five creative projects in the works. When I try to pit everything else on the back burner to focus on one, I shut down and can't do anything. I do have difficulty switching gears in my head from technical to creative, however. If I am involved in a major database project at work, for example, my creative brain takes a nap.

message 3: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Lawston (andrewlawston) | 44 comments I'm always working on several things at once, but in a fairly haphazard way - I'll spend several days working on one project and then randomly spend the next evening on another one.

I'm hopelessly disorganised and chaotic with my writing habits, though.

message 4: by Lily (new)

Lily Vagabond (lilyauthor) Sure, if I want to. Hours in the day is the only thing that holds me back. For myself, though, I've been trained that way. One job I had, I dealt with an ad design turn around rate of 100 a day. Each ad had to be unique othewise the company would lose money when the client complained the ad was too close to their competitor.

Another job, layout and design of medical text books with different illustrations on almost every page, and the books were 400 - 500 pages.

So, because of my work experience, as long as I have a rough draft of a project, I can develop and finish a lot of projects at once.

Now, if you're asking whether I can craft more than one project at once, then no lol One draft at a time.

message 5: by Jacek (new)

Jacek Slay Yeah, I suppose. Right now I'm working on one novel, collection of short stories, one or two short stories and I have just started the Who Wants to Write a Story thingy.
All depends on where my mind/mood is at.

message 6: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Lund (benlund2000) | 10 comments No way. My concentration one comes in one piece.

message 7: by Alex (new)

Alex Morritt (alexmorritt) | 11 comments All creative projects to a degree feed off each other, so as long as I can keep all the plates spinning, I like to have more than one thing on the boil at any given time.

Poetry and Short Stories are my particular bag and I find that the creative process for each employs a different part of the brain, so they make good partners in that they don't compete unduly for mental resources.

Thank the almighty that we don't all have the exact same structure...that would be boring as hell :-)

message 8: by Michael (new)

Michael Benavidez | 1696 comments I'm always working on several things at once. it's just a matter of which one takes priority. I find that if I focus on one too much, it hit a brick wall with a force that practically kills my creativity. So I start several things, or at least gather the ideas so that i'm never low on things to work with.

message 9: by Justin (new)

Justin (justinbienvenue) | 1352 comments Mod
I do sometimes. Most recently I work on short stories while working on my 4th novel.

message 10: by Lee (new)

Lee Goldberg | 1 comments I find it's better to work on a few projects as once. Usually each project is in different stages of being done. I write fiction as well as screenplays so I enjoy shifting the focus between the two, especially if I'm writing a novel I know will take a long time to finish.

message 11: by Shari (new)

Shari Sakurai (shari_sakurai) | 87 comments For me I find I prefer to work on a few novels at once - especially if writer's block strikes! If that happens I just switch to another until inspiration returns.

message 12: by Samuel (new)

Samuel King | 9 comments If I'm working on something new - probably not. Being a "seat of the pants" type of scribbler (no sophisticated outlines, etc.), I need to be totally invested in what I'm working on.

A rewrite is a different story. That's what I'm doing now, and I've been able to do several other things related to my work (such as working with narrators on two audio books) at the same time with no problems.

message 13: by Yolanda (new)

Yolanda Ramos (yramosseventhsentinel) I can only work on one project at a time, although my brain is busy with the story arc for future books in the series.

message 14: by Melissa (new)

Melissa Veracruz (melissaveracruz) | 59 comments Hmm. If we're talking multitasking here, without a doubt. I am a random human being and one thing at a time can sometimes underwhelm me.

I can write a new book while editing another. I also have ideas constantly, so I have to stop and sort those out too.

message 15: by E.G. (new)

E.G. Manetti (thornraven) The voices in my head sometimes make me. Even though I'm working on one project, they'll nag me until I at least outline their story.

message 16: by Lily (new)

Lily Vagabond (lilyauthor) You know, in theory, anyone can work on more than one project at a time. I could work on a million projects at once. Whether I'll finish any of them, is another matter...

message 17: by Tabitha (new)

Tabitha Vohn A few are in my head; one is currently coming onto the page, but that's as multi-tasked as I can be ;0)

message 18: by Mary (new)

Mary Catelli | 245 comments I need to switch when I go stale. Bad habit, I have to teach myself to go back, but necessary for me.

Also I need to work in parallel in order to give me something to do while a work is sitting on the back burner after a draft.

message 19: by K.P. (new)

K.P. Merriweather (kp_merriweather) | 517 comments depends. i have 3-5 going at once. either the puter is hateful again, another hd crapped out (like recently 3rd time in 3 months ugh), recovering data while i wait, on hold while waiting on reference books to come in, or burned out.... i tend to have a lot of computer issues (cheap parts old stuff) and it takes a while to finish anything....

message 20: by Heather (new)

Heather Blair (lovelyshivers) | 39 comments I am almost always working two or more projects at a time. One is always prioritized tho, with the others as more of a 'when inspriration stikes' and you just HAVE to write a killer scene or idea down before it fades.

message 21: by Justin (new)

Justin (justinbienvenue) | 1352 comments Mod
I wrote that I'm doing this right now but to give you an actual account for everything I'm doing, I'm currently working on my 4th and 5th novels, re-worked The Devil's Orgy short story, working on getting info for the Seven Deadly Sin project, revising the Seven Virtues story I wrote and writing poems hear and there.

Can you say busy? lol.

message 22: by Mike (new)

Mike Robbins (mikerobbins) | 45 comments I'm working on two projects at once, one fiction and one non-fiction. I am used to jumping from one thing to another - I am an editor (of official documents, not books), and priorities shift constantly. My real problem is simply concentrating. I think a lot of writers have problems focusing; too much going on in our brains!

message 23: by Tiger (new)

Tiger Gray (tiger_gray) | 290 comments I have three going. Sequel to my debut novel, first novel in another world, and a dragon age fanfic.

message 24: by Jason (new)

Jason Chapman | 7 comments I'm currently working on my third novel in a series of books I am writing, plus I am compiling a number of short stories and turning that into a novel. I am also looking at writing a new book for resease in the summer. As an independent author I am learning that you need to be on the go all the time, otherwise you just melt in =to the crowd.

message 25: by [deleted user] (new)

When t comes to Fiction, I can only write one at the time, like you, Kevin. However, I can imagine other stories and keep them in my head, like Tabitha.

And I dig guys like Justin, who can write several Fiction projects at the same time!!! :D

By the answers here, seems like most authors/writers can do that - wow! :P

message 26: by Lynne (new)

Lynne Stringer | 175 comments I usually like to complete at least the first draft of any novel before I move on to another one, unless I'm abandoning it because it doesn't work. :-)

message 27: by Lyra (new)

Lyra Shanti (lyrashanti) I try to keep focused on one story at a time, but sometimes the ideas come and I have to follow the muse. Currently, I'm editing book two of my series, writing book three, and for a break, writing a short story. It keeps my creative juices flowing! :)

message 28: by Ed (new)

Ed Ireland (edireland) | 222 comments I actually like working on two books at a time. Sometimes the block will drop in on the one I'm working on primarily and I can just switch to the other. Usually something will happen in the second book that triggers the first book back to life. I just try to keep them at two separate genres so as to avoid a similar occurrence in 2 different books.

message 29: by Quentin (last edited Mar 31, 2015 07:13PM) (new)

Quentin Wallace (quentinwallace) | 380 comments I only work on one project at a time myself, but ideas do constantly pop in my head for future projects. I file the ideas away, however, and complete what Im working on at the time. I have a thing about leaving a project uncompleted, it drives me nuts. The only exception being if its something I decided to give up on near the start, which is rare.

message 30: by Claire (new)

Claire (Book Blog Bird) (clairebookblogbird) Yeah, I'm currently working on two things; the sequel to my first book and a separate standalone. It works for me. If I hit a slump with one of them, I just switch to the other and write that for a bit.

message 31: by Caroline (new)

Caroline (carolineandrus) I haven't tried yet! I have a novel that I finished the second draft of, but I'm taking a break and moving onto another book in the same world, following different characters. A prequel in a sense. I'm not sure I could work on actively writing both at the same time though, I don't like to stop before I'm finished, so I would rather finish one draft of one before moving on to the next. (I did write a short story in the middle of the second draft of the first novel, but I didn't work on the novel during the time I wrote the short.)

message 32: by M. (new)

M. | 2 comments Absolutely. I am promiscuously creative.

message 33: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Butcher (alb2012) | 12 comments I tend to have a few things going at once. Usually a novel and one or more short stories.

message 34: by Brooks (new)

Brooks Kohler Yup, and I try and finish each one.

message 35: by Mary (new)

Mary Catelli | 245 comments Brooks wrote: "Yup, and I try and finish each one."

How true. Nothing is more important for working on multiple projects than the ability to circle back.

message 36: by Riley (new)

Riley Amos Westbrook (sonshinegreene) | 124 comments I have three works I'm doing right now, with a fourth in the works! I used to fear they would become all jumbled up in my head, but they keep to their nice little compartments, just like when I used to DM games.

message 37: by Brooks (last edited Apr 20, 2015 07:26PM) (new)

Brooks Kohler Mary wrote: "Brooks wrote: "Yup, and I try and finish each one."

How true. Nothing is more important for working on multiple projects than the ability to circle back."

Yeah, a friend of mine who played in a pretty successful band chewed me out for not finishing a story I started.

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