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With my rediscovered passion for writing, I find myself bouncing around from story to story- a few hundred words here, a thousand there. I literally have dozens of half-starts, outlines and random scratchings that I just can't wait to work on. I think there are over a million words in my little head that have accumulated over the years that I can't wait to get out. I've worked on getting the shorts done first, with three up already, and this approach seems to work well enough for short stories. But as I get to working on longer items, which are the ones I really want to be writing, I feel like I'm hindering my potential by jumping around so much. On the other hand, it's so much fun, like doing different things with different friends on different days.

I feel like I need to focus on just one or two at a time and move those forward or I'll never get anywhere. Part of my problem with regards to this is that I'm a pantser, so I make a good run on a story, but then get stuck, and so I bounce on to the next. My overall productivity is pretty low which doesn't help either (~300 wpd average since my New Year's resolution to do this kicked in, but getting better).

My question(s) to all of you: How many different works are you actively working on at any given time, and how do you feel if affects your overall productivity and the quality of your writing?
 

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Sometimes I work on just one; other times I work on two at once. (And at all times I have stuff I'm not working on simmering in my head.)

How many stories I'm actively working on depends on what else is going on in my life. I always have time to work on one story, but I may not have extra time to work on a second. If I am going to start working on a second story, however, it'll be because I know I have a free enough schedule for the next month or two, not because I have an extra hour or two today. If all I've got is some extra time on one day, I'll work on marketing or go read a book instead. I don't like getting started on a story then not being able to get back to it for weeks. (I might do some outlining though, in those cases, if the story's clamoring loudly enough for attention.)

I like when I'm able to work on two books at once because I can play them off each other-whichever one I'm most excited about on a given day is the one I'll work on after I reach my day's story goal for the other one. (And that's what I'm doing right now, two books, one a sequel and one a standalone...while simmering some very noisy ideas for the next two.)
 

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Right now I have four I'm working on all at once, plus the occasional blog entry.

Overall, it is one book that takes up the bulk of my time. The others, I turn to when I need a break. So far, it's working well for me.
 

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One. Always. But I think I'm in the minority.

(Except that I sometimes have to look at edits or covers or whatever in between, and have audiobooks going on. But writing? One and only one.)
 
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