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I'm just starting out with writing fiction seriously. I feel like this might be my "thing." Strangely enough, at the moment I find myself with a number of ideas, most in very early stages of development. As in notes, bare-bones plot outlines, rough character concepts, etc. A part of me is tempted to have them all active simultaneously, so that on any given day, depending on my mood and mindset, I have stuff to work on. Granted, with this approach I might not finish anything for centuries. Alternately, perhaps there's some method of prioritizing them, finishing them in an order of some sort. This way I might complete a project quickly, but in the meantime the other ideas might have floundered in my mind. I could really use some guidance on this. Thanks.

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What I would do in your situation is this:

  1. Write them all in parallel for a fixed time, say a month, month and a half.
  2. When that time is up, see which ones you're most excited about, and put the rest on hold. Write and develop your select few for another set time.
  3. Repeat till you know which ONE is your focus for now, and go at that one 100%, until its done.

That way you get to explore all your stories and discover which one pulls you most right now, and then focus on that ONE story until its complete.

Why one? Because the only way to really do your best, is to focus. But for someone bursting with new-found creative energy, the only way to focus is to know that this is simply the one you're writing now, and that it doesn't mean that you won't get to the other ones later.

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Maybe the solution would be to schedule time for writing your main project, and for a couple of those sessions to allow yourself to be diverted onto other projects.

Mostly though it is understanding what your best method of working is, this will probably take some trial and error, you might find that distracting yourself on multiple projects helps you stay objective about the story lines. Or you might realise that you simply can't juggle the multiple plots all at once.

Decide which one is your priority, and experiment with different ways of approaching it until you find the most productive

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Different take: Personally I've always had grand 'ideas' floating around in my head for stories (and still do), but could never muster the motivation to see them to the end. I have begun writing my first novel but it turned out that a different strategy altogether seemed to work. One day and idea popped into my head and before trying to plan it all out I just started writing. Since then it has changed a lot, and I have found opportunities to incorporate my other ideas as I have progressed. Maybe instead of worrying about how to fit your ideas together, you can just start writing and see which ideas fall into the work naturally?

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