Collaboration: The Path to Achievement

For the last year, fiction website has posted consecutive chapters of Two Weeks to Rites. This web series collaboration with fellow writer Desiree Smith-Daughety has been far from the ordinary writing project.

We first approached the project like a long car ride with a stack of Mad Libs packed for the miles ahead. We had a vague idea and minimal direction. As the story progressed, and we continued to play off each other’s words, the goal changed.

The initial ‘mayhem’ rules were simple: we had to work from a limited third person perspective of the character/s we created, and to stick to a word count between 500 and 700 words per section. That was it! Our biggest challenge was to see if we could write a full story arc—off-the-cuff—with nothing more than each other’s words to guide us. One word, one action could change the entire direction of the story—and it did, on more than one occasion.

To bring the story to a close (the web series officially ended on Wednesday 6/10) we had to revamp our writing process and tighten our thinking caps. Instead of exchanging pages with the excitement of Christmas morning, we had to sit down and plan each scene and character action with painstaking precision. But for me, none of it felt like work. Desiree is an exceptional writer and my comma guru. I couldn’t have finished this project without her dedication, quirky humor and excellent grammar.

Together we have fully embraced the process of collaboration and its benefits, not only to our joint ventures, but also to our individual writing. So, it should come as no surprise that this will not be the last you hear of our team efforts. Keep your eyes open for Two Weeks to Rites, the full length novel, in 2016! Oh, and a second novel is currently in production.

One of the greatest rewards to come out of this partnership was the opportunity to educate other writers about the advantages of collaboration. Mid-Atlantic Fiction Writers Institute reached out to us with a workshop request for their 2015 Writing Conference, and we gladly accepted.

Why Every Writer Should Collaborate, is the title of our new breakout session. We will be teaching the workshop on Saturday, August 8th—as well as speaking on several author panels throughout the conference. Below is the workshop description and contact information for Mid-Atlantic Fiction Writers Institute. Please help us spread the word and we hope to see you there!


Saturday August 8th – 10:15 – 12:00

Many writers experience writer’s block at some point during their writing careers. The use of collaborative writing tools can provide substantial advantages to projects ranging from increased writer commitment to easier, more effective and efficient work processes. Learn the advantages of boosted accountability and expanded creativity and how to find a partner to create a successful collaboration.



Twitter: @mafwihcc



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