From a Cabin in the Woods is please to have Jodi Bogert as guest author this month.

Jodi Bogert | From a Cabin in the Woods | A Slice of Orange

Jodi Bogert is a member of the Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC. In 2016, she graduated from Kutztown University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Professional Writing and blogs original content and freelances. Her future goals for her career include with publishing more short stories and a debut novel. 


Resolutions for Writers

Jodi Bogert

The beginning of the New Year means setting goals. These goals can be taking either a new direction in life or working on something that people always aspired to finish. For writers, resolutions typically revolve around starting the first draft of that big novel they dreamed of publishing.

More often than not, this resolution is a recycled goal from the previous January and the one before that. The reasons writers never get around to the first draft can vary. There is too much to do and few hours in the day or the writer’s heart was not in it. However, if the story idea is enough to create a book, and the writer has the drive, anything is possible. Following a few steps, the writer will find it easier to carry out the project.

Step 1: Plan out everything

A writer will spend a lot of time thinking about a good idea. So many thoughts go through one’s mind it’s easy to lose track and become overwhelmed. The best way to begin a new novel is to create a basic outline. Writing every plot point, character trait, and other details can help organize thoughts and provide a visual aid. A writer can also use this outline as a tool throughout the process. They can look at it again and decide which parts of the story needs to be added or eliminated. 

Step 2: Break it into chunks

When writing the first draft, too many writers work for hours on end, never giving themselves and the project a chance to rest. Frustration and stress quickly build up, and the writer will find it easier to quit. Gradually writing the first draft is the smarter way to go forward. Setting up a daily quota of pages or words to will develop the project at a steady pace. The writer will learn to take things slowly, going back to make sure everything in the story reflects absolute perfection, or as perfect as a first draft can be.

Step 3: Asking for help

One big mistake that writers make is not getting other people involved. A writer cannot do it all alone. At this point, they are the only one who has spent time on the project, from conceptualizing the idea to writing out the first few chapters. Using other people’s eyes is essential because they are unfamiliar with the story and more likely to find mistakes and pick out plot lines or characters that are not working out. The writer should always listen to their inner voice, but the opinion of the audience can help take the project where it needs to go.  

Step 4: Rewrite, rewrite, rewrite!

When the first draft is finally taken out of the writer’s mind and put down on paper, the process is still far from over. Completing a novel takes an immense amount of time and effort. Putting away the first draft for a time is what the writer needs to do, giving the writer time to think about what they want to change in the next draft. Looking at a first draft with fresh eyes also brings numeral mistakes forward that the writer might have overlooked. 


Untethered | Short Story Award | A Slice of Orange

Jodi Bogert’s “Old Man Omar” is among the twenty-seven stories in Untethered: Sweet, Funny, and Strange Tales of the Paranormal.

Her story shows us that sometimes those we consider crazy might just know some things we don’t.

FMI


About BWG
About BWG
The Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC (BWG), founded in 2006, is a community of mutually supportive, fiction and nonfiction authors based in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. The members are as different from each other as their stories, spanning a range of genres including: children’s, fantasy, humor, inspiration, literary, memoir, mystery, paranormal, romance, science fiction, women’s fiction, and young adult.

SalSally Paradysz wrote from a book-lined cabin in the woods beside the home she built from scratch. She was an ordained minister of the Assembly of the Word, founded in 1975. For two decades, she provided spiritual counseling and ministerial assistance. Sal completed undergraduate and graduate courses in business and journalism. She took courses at NOVA, and served as a hotline, hospital, and police interview volunteer in Bucks County, PA. She was definitely owned by her two Maine Coon cats, Kiva and Kodi.

Sal is missed by all who knew her.


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The Bethlehem Writers Group, LLC (BWG), founded in 2006, is a community of mutually supportive, fiction and nonfiction authors based in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. The members are as different from each other as their stories, spanning a range of genres including: children’s, fantasy, humor, inspiration, literary, memoir, mystery, paranormal, romance, science fiction, women’s fiction, and young adult.
  • Veronica Jorge says:

    Hi Jodi, It’s Veronica from Lower Mac. library. Nice to see you here and read your writing tips!

  • Hi Jodi,
    Some grwat tips for the New Year. It’s always good to have a plan.

  • dtkrippene says:

    As a hardcore pantser, plotting and planning it all out is akin to pulling fingernails for me. That said, I’m getting better at it. Walking away for awhile, particularly after first draft and before editing, is by far the best process in my writing toolbox. Thanks Jodi.

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