Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Are You a Plugger or a Zipper? by Morgan Mandel

Since being unemployed, I've spent more time writing. Still, it's slow going. On a usual day, I can get a little over 1,000 words done before mental exhaustion takes over and I just can't think any more.

On an exceptional day, 2,000 words happen.

Imagine my surprise when one of our blog members, Debra St. John, mentioned when she had an entire day to write, she zipped out 30,000 words! Good for Deb! That would take me at least 2 weeks of exceptional days for me to accomplish.

What about you? Are you a plugger or a zipper?




Morgan Mandel
http://morganmandel.blogspot.com
Killer Career 99 cents on Kindle
and Smashwords

21 comments:

Celia Yeary said...

Hi, Morgan--cute! I began as a zipper, but now I am a plugger. Why? At first I knew nothing about writing properly so all I did was write the story--one after the other--very uninhibited. Now--I know too much and I'm much more inhibited when I write.
I met with a beginning writer yesterday in our writing group, and she apololized to us for being ao ignorant--she said, You know, I only write, page after page, not even looking back to check for errors or anything. I told her--good for you, Faye! In my opinion, that's the way to do it. You can always edit and re-edit, but you've got to get the story down. Celia

Marian Allen said...

I'm usually a plugger. That's why I love NaNoWriMo--I'm forced to zip, and it's like sticking your head out of the car window and feeling the air rush past, except you don't have anybody telling you to pull your head in before it gets knocked off.

Marian Allen

Chris Redding said...

zzzzipper. I can write 5 pages in an hour. I can't keep it up all day, but 10+ pages in a day dedicated to writing is not odd for me.

Sutton Fox said...

More of a plugger. I can do 3k-5k on a really good day. Thats tops though.

Wish I were a zipper and could just lay down the story without thinking it to death in the first draft.

Cheryl said...

Plugger, but there are times I can be a zipper. :)

Allene said...

Definitely a plugger. When I worked as a news reporter I had to 'zip' through everything. Now I am retired and can enjoy the actual pleasure of writing.

J.W. Nicklaus said...

Undoubtedly a plugger. I tend to edit as I go, so it takes me forever to make any headway. I also tend to write when inspiration is strongest, which isn't always when Time allows.

Sadly, I am of the Plugger Cabal.

Terry Odell said...

Plugger all the way. But I like to think that when I'm done, I'm closer to a final draft than I am on those days I just write to be writing.

Terry
Terry's Place
Romance with a Twist--of Mystery

Morgan Mandel said...

I don't feel so alone. So far, there are lots of pluggers out there like me.

Morgan Mandel
http://morganmandel.blogspot.com

jenny milchman said...

I would've thought 'zipper' but not if 30k is the criterion for that! Yowza! That is truly incredible. I couldn't do it, and if I did, I wouldn't write again for a week, have to throw out all but the first 3-5000 anyway, so I might as well pace myself. Plugger then?

Keena Kincaid said...

Sometimes I zip, others I plug. It depends on which character is talking to me that day. Although I could never write 30K in a day, even if I didn't leave my chair for 24 hours.Coffee breaks--and the resulting bio breaks--alone would make it impossible.

Deb Larson said...

I'm a little of both too. Some times I have it all straightened around and off I go - zip! Other times, not so much :)
DL Larson

Rebecca Camarena said...

I usually plug away at things, but some of my best writing has been when I was a zipper or in the flow as it's called.

Anonymous said...

Morgan: I generally plug but sometimes I 'go' with a zip inspiration and write a whole scene that suddwenly occurs to me - then I have to print it out and stick it on my pile of noets to mlyself to keep from losing it before get to it - (I'm glad you can't see this desk -LOL!)
Jackie Griffey

Morgan Mandel said...

I'm always fighting a losing battle with my desk also.

Morgan

Fiona McGier said...

When I sub in English classes, I always tell the students to: barf it out, clean it up later. They laugh. But the reality is that if you don't get any words out, there won't be anything to edit and revise! Once I sit to write, I'm a zipper. It's finding the time to do it that's so hard!

Anonymous said...

Harlan Ellison once spoke dreamily of ten thousand words per day -- day after day when he was a young man and living with another famous writer whose name I don't remember.

On the other hand I found a whole box full of work I zipped out because I didn't know any better, and it was pretty good stuff (desperately in need of editing, but not too bad otherwise).

Jefferson Dane

hotcha12 said...

HI MORGAN! ZIPPER ALL THE WAY AS I'M A TYPE A!

April said...

When I begin a project, I am often a plugger until I get my feet wet, then I usually am able to immerse myself and zip along.

Lisabet Sarai said...

Hi, Morgan,

By most people's standards I'm more of a zipper. I can do 4-5K in four to six hours. But I only have one day a week to write, so I want to make it worthwhile. I don't know if I could keep up that pace if I wrote ever day.

30K in one day is pretty unbelievable, though!

Gladys Hobson said...

I'm just a slug! I get there sloooooooooooowly. No choice, never could touch type. I have been known to get up at three in the morning and work for most of the day. Sometimes achieve 2,000 words. But these days 1,000 words is an achievement. What does it matter? I can write as fast as my thoughts allow.