Status Update

#AmWriting

2 Chapters, ~7000 words. Despite losing one writing day to car maintenance. Also wrote two blog posts, at 2000 words each. But those aren’t ‘productive’ sessions. Still, not a bad week. Took 14 pages of notes. But decided that one chapter needs to work differently, so I’ll have to rework those this week. But that’s not a problem.

With car and work headaches sorted, I’m hoping for a good 10000 word week this time around.

It’s Been A While

Oh, indeed it has. I struggled with my writing for a good month. Distractions at work and in myself left me disinclined to write. I played at changing projects. But I have three years and 5+ books invested in this one. And the time to switch isn’t right after you’ve started the last book. Every time I’d start toying with something else, the run-in for this kept dancing in my head. “But I don’t want to write this now.”

“Too Bad,” came the driver in me, who does 90% of my writing. Ironically enough, it took playing around with my primary distraction, Football Manager, and writing about that in my other blog, to get me at it again. And the response it received encouraged me that yeah, I can do this writer thing when I apply myself.

So this morning, I dusted off my notes, picked up where I left off, and rattled off 3000 words like I had been doing it yesterday. Then I wrote another 1200 on the other blog for good measure. And honestly, I think it helps to have the other outlet. That all I do isn’t invested in my Magic-infested Punic Wars gone mad monstrosity. But more, going over it again yesterday made me realize, it’s goodish. Hard in places, because epic fantasy goes places shorter, more episodic prose can’t. Unless it’s Grimdark, then that’s all it knows. But there’s hope, love, honor, and faith to be seen in it too. And unlike certain HBO promoted series that never get finished, I might actually reward my characters for that from time to time. 😛

Ideas have never been a problem for me. It’s always the doubt monster, telling me that what I’m currently working on is carp. That’s why I was always pretty serious about the 2000X5 rule. If I churned out 10,000 words a week, chances were good I could get too far into a book before the Doubt Monster could get at me.

So to keep myself accountable, I’m getting this blog moving again too. Even if it’s just status updates. If you don’t see anything here for a week, drop me a line and tell me to get writing. 😛 If you do, and it says I’m doubting, then kick my butt some more. If things are going well, you don’t have to say anything. 😉

But for now, hashtag me #amwriting.

Ethical Dilemma!

I sooo wanted to get the Word Count for NaNoWriMo up to 35,000 words this weekend. It’s been flowing, moving daily, and I might even knock out all my notes by the end of writing on Sunday. Or so I thought…

…and then THIS shows up on my doorstep. Oh…thank you Postal Service, for not even knocking at my door. Kate Daniels, you magnificent butt-kicker, can I possibly put this off until I get 3000 words typed?

Priorities.

Over Halfway done

26,500 words after day 12. That’s despite last night being truncated because after 10-12hr days with a horde of customers on Thursdays, my brain is something approximating Swiss Cheese. At one point last night, I dozed while holding the aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa down. Umm, there were more “A”s.

No, I did not count that as a word. Why are you asking? :/ I deleted it, and then made record of it here, because Internet is forever.

I’m actually pleased with the story so far. Which is good seeing it’s Book 5 of 6, and a project I’ve spent now almost 2 years of pretty much 100% of my writing on. I detoured just long enough to do NaNo on something else last year. Then buried the results because I hated them. The previous year was book 2 of this series. So yeah, longer than 2 years. And since they’re epic fantasies, the shortest was 125,000 words. I can almost see the finish line for the series. But it’s a loooong way off still.

Then maybe I can do some dreadpunk, with a Victorian Indiana Jones. 😉

Oh Well Guess 20k WIll Have to Wait

Until the end of today. Had waaaay too many interruptions and extra hours of work this weekend to go over and above on the writing. So I ended the weekend w. 4300 words and a total of 18,500. A regular day today should see me over 20k.

We didn’t get to see Spectre opening weekend either. See above for the reason. But hey, at least I’ll have lots of OT on this check. The IRS will love that.

Only 15 pages of notes left

Oh no! That’s not far enough ahead. Fortunately, I’ll be scribbling more today. 😛

14,200 words so far for NaNo. My goal is to be over 20k by the end of the weekend. That might be a tad ambitious, seeing as Mrs Cole and I are planning on seeing Spectre this weekend too. But I’d always rather set high goals than lower ones.

NaNo projects my 50k word date at November 22nd right now. I’m hoping to be able to validate on the 20th. At any rate, the last couple NaNos were more chore-like than fun for me. So it’s nice to have one where the words are flowing readily.

So keep writing! Wait…if you’re on NaNo, why are you even here in the first place:

Take HEED!

Thanks NaNo.

But I really don’t think I’ll be done by November 12th. *chuckles* Of course, I don’t expect to be.

4500 words on day 1 was a nice start. But the general plan from here one is 2000 words a workday, save Thursdays, where if I can squeak out a thousand, I’m doing well. (Work is crazy for me then, and typically leaves my brain dribbling out my ears.) Then rack up 3k on the weekend. Of course, that still puts me at 20k at the end of next Sunday, and going over 50k on November 20th (the earliest validation day, as I recall).

The point is this: One of the things people rag on NaNo about is it being ‘speed writing.’ It really isn’t. 1500 words a day, every day, will get you close enough to 50k in a month to make it with a couple bigger days thrown in. That’s not a sprint. Not even close. That’s less than Stephen King’s maxim for ‘real writers’ in On Writing. It doesn’t require ramming speed recklessness. It simply requires consistent effort. Something which anyone writing novels really needs, since the Doubt Monster will otherwise come and swallow up your half-finished manuscript.

Sure, you’ll have to edit, so it really isn’t ‘done’ in terms of publication ready. But it’s a lot harder for the DM to critical hit that completed rough draft than it is the thing that’s one-third to half-finished. Messing with that, before you’ve seen how all the plotlines shake out, isn’t editing. It’s tinkering. Make editing its own phase. Separate from writing. It’s neater that way.

It’s That Time of the Year Again.

No. I’m not staying up until 0000 so I can start NaNoWriMo on the stroke of the 1st. I’m far too old for that. But don’t worry, I have 34 pages of notes set for expansion and typing. I think that should get me a good start over the next couple days. And I expect nothing less than a good 5k start on Day1.

So, if you haven’t already buddied me, find me here! I’ll be sure to return the favor. Erm, when I take a break from rapping my keyboard in the fastest four finger typing session you’ve ever seen.

What? My wife even says so. 65 words a minute without using all of both hands. Not bad for a middle aged guy like me. 😉

Update: Well, a mere 4500 words for day 1. But it’s at the end of a section. So a good time to stop before Walking Dead.

Praise Literature and Latte

For giving Scrivener five automatic backups. Or Tarien would be gnashing his overambitious teeth right about now. Having been spurred to place a book 5 between my recently finished 4 and the series finishing 6, I thought again on putting a book 2.5 between my present books 2 & 3. Which are of course, in the can.

The outline for the book was again, frighteningly simple. But when I started rearranging scenes and moving files, I started to get a headache. The timeline, which is fairly neat now, was about to become a mess only Steven Erikson could approve of. But by now I had pulled chapters out of existing works, piled up a dozen new chapters. And still had 4 pages of outline.

Well, right about then, the throbbing in my head told me that nuking the outline was better for a writer’s sanity than introducing my very own Garden of the Moonism to my Hellenistic Fantasy. So I managed to find my backup from last night, save all my real work, and pretend tonight didn’t happen.

Then of course, I saved it for all perpetuity. Because the internet is forever. One note to Scrivener users who might recall the distant past where I discussed using it with this series (And all my fiction writing outside short-story length since 2012). Decide whether to break the project into chunks (of novel size or greater) or keep it unified at the beginning and stick to that choice. Your humble blogger tonight also experimented with breaking up his project, as I thought seven books would become unwieldy for the laptop’s memory. That choice did not last as long as the book 7 outline attempt. A good chunk of my keywords got nuked going from volume 1 to 2 and 3. I would’ve had to rearrange all of them, and rewrite a passel. I thought that acceptable, as then I could change ranks, and put characters who were deceased now back into live columns in earlier volumes for editing purposes.

Erm…not so much. It seems editing the keyword in one project changed it for all…even though they were distinct projects. Maybe because I had all 3 open at the same time, and if I closed the others it wouldn’t. But opening and closing them each time represents a level of tedium even I am not masochistic enough to endure. And I was a goalkeeper in soccer and hockey. So I know pain. 😛