Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The End

Well, I did it. The 23rd and final chapter is complete, as of about 3 pm. I fell short of my 40K goal for a first draft. I'll probably fall short of my 80K goal for the final draft. But the story will be what it will be, regardless of how long it is.

I have copious notes on things I want to add, expand, revise. My goal is to have the second draft complete and beta-reader-worthy by Christmas.

Wish me luck.

Monday, September 24, 2007

One More to Go

I wrote the entirety of chapter 22 today. It's the longest of the first draft chapters to date, coming in just over 2300 words. I'm afraid I got very little Real Job (tm) work done today. I'd be lying if I said I was sorry.

The climax of the story was in this chapter, and as such I feel like I've been on an adrenaline rush the entire day. So much happening all at once.

I have one more chapter to write, tomorrow hopefully. It'll be the resolution to many things, a chance to let the reader (and me) rest and catch their breath.

Next week, I have the dreaded Quarterly Project at work. I'm going to plan on NOT writing all that week. It's just not worth the stress, trying to juggle anything else with that quarterly nonsense. And, since I should be done with the first draft, taking a week's break before starting Mission: Revision is warranted.

I feel very satisfied with myself today. It's been a long time since I could honestly say I finished something. One more chapter to go

Friday, September 21, 2007

The End is Near

I finished chapter 21 today. I knew I'd zoom right through it! The next one should be the same (knock on particle board), as it's full of action. I seem to do well with action. It's the quieter moments I struggle with.

So, because I had some bored moments today, I got to thinking about how long it's taken me to write this particular work. I knew that I'd started in May, so I figured it was around five months, so far. Being the anal creature that I am, I went to look at just exactly WHEN I started.

The "created on" date, for chapter 1, is May 21st. I wrote the first five chapters in 8 days. Then, I struggled with six weeks of writer's block before I touched anything again, around July 18th.

Taking all that into account, carrying the 1, dividing by Pi, I figure I've written this first draft in 2.5 months. That...astounds me like you cannot believe. Granted, it's no where near finished. (for my purposes, finished = publishable) But still, I've managed to create a full story, with great characters set in an interesting world, in just under three months. I never dreamed that possible.

Chie tells me it's becuase I outlined this first. I'm inclined to agree with her. That idea makes me rather skeptical about the fate of project number 1, which has languished on extended hiatus. I didn't outline that one, and in retrospect, it shows. Badly. I wonder if it's even salvageable.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

And the true puzzle is...

Why does one screen say that I have 100 posts, and one screen says 99? Ah well. This'll be the proxy-100th post. Yes, that's what we'll call it.

100th Post

For my next trick...

Well, this is my 100th post. I'm sure it would be much more momentous to announce that I've finished a book, or found an agent, or entranced a publisher. Maybe those things can wait 'til my 500th post.

I can say that I finished chapter 20 today, and got a good jump on 21. These things make me positively giddy. I'm pleased with this as a first draft, and I'm even more pleased with the notes I am taking for myself on the things I need to add/change/embellish to make this truly all it could be.

So, happy 100th post to me!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Purple Haze

I had a lot of interesting writer-ly insights to discuss today. Unfortunately, they have all vanished into the antihistamine fog in my head.

I know better than to take them, but my allergies were just making me soooo miserable today. So now, sure, the allergy symptoms are gone, but I'm a walking zombie, reducing my husband and child to scavenging for food without my maternal guidance. (Pizza Rolls, anyone?)

Maybe tomorrow, I'll be witty.

Or the next day.

Happy "Talk Like A Pirate" Day!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


Yes it's a word. By the powers invested in my English degree, I am allowed to use/coin words of questionable parentage. I am also fond of jackassery, and asshatery.

I finished chapter 19 today, AND broke the 30K mark in word count! Come on, dance with me!

Four more chapters to go, and I'm still hoping to hit the 40K mark with this first draft. You ought to see my outline, it's all colorful and stuff. I use blue to denote things I want to add/change in the second draft, green to keep track of my word count, and red to highlight the finished chapters. It's a veritable rainbow! I suppose, to denote finished chapters in the second draft, I'll have to come up with a different highlight color. Purple, maybe. Royal purple.

I did hit a bit of a hiccup today, as I'm laying the final clues for my plot twist. What if my twist isn't nearly as clever as I think it is? I mean, I don't mind people figuring it out before the big reveal. That's half the fun of reading! But I don't want them to see it coming WAY too early and say "Oh wow, that was dumb!" There's a fine line between the reader outsmarting you, and the reader thinking you're a raving moron.

Anyway, that's my ramble for today. I'ma go watch it rain.

Monday, September 17, 2007

If Wishes Were Fishes...

...the house would smell like rotting cod.

Sorry, that was my deep thought for the day. It's the most I've accomplished all day.

Work is driving me batty. Friends are driving me batty. People I don't even know are driving me batty.

Needless to say, there is no writing being done.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Seminars and Get-Togethers

I spent all day in a customer service training seminar. I'm sure this isn't unusual for many of you, but considering that I don't actually TALK to customers (I don't even talk to my co-workers if I can help it), it seemed a bit superfluous.

This is why I didn't get any writing done today. (Waaaay better than the "dog ate my jump drive" excuse) Which, by the way, brings me to the one highlight of my intensive-training day. I won a 256mb jump drive! I have no idea what I'm going to do with it, but...I have one!

This weekend, dear sweet patient adorable Gita is coming into town again, as she passes through headed for Chicago on Sunday. We're having breakfast with the Crayon (another friend, and future beta reader, little does she know) on Sunday, and catching up on old times. Gita and I may also go to an art fair tomorrow, as it turns out one of my co-workers from the Real Job (tm) is an accomplished artist and is one of those showcased.

This is why I won't get any writing done this weekend. (still better than the "dog ate my jump drive" excuse)

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Sinuses, Allergies, and Writing

I have a headache. I've had it, off and on, for probably the last five days. It's not a horrible, incapacitating headache. It's one that's just there enough to be annoying. I think it's due to the absolutely horrible allergy season we're having here in Misery...er...Missouri. I never thought I'd be praying for the first hard freeze.

Today, I finished chapter 18. I say it's finished because I'm sick of looking at it. It's going in the pile of "chapters I really don't like, but had to finish". I'm looking forward to working on the next chapter. Should be more action, more stuff simply HAPPENING.

I may still meet my goal of finishing this first draft by the end of September. I know, I know, you're eyeing the word count at the left and thinking "Uh...but that's no where near 80K words..." I know this. I'm hoping to get 40K with this first draft, and then flesh everything out in the second draft. This is my first attempt at writing in this fashion, so it remains to be seen how it turns out.

I have to say though, the hardest thing to learn has been something that I see repeated often over at Absolute Write. "Allow yourself to write crap." If you don't, you spend your whole life editing three pages, and you never get anywhere.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Today's Efforts

Well, I finished chapter 17 in an unexpected burst of creative energy, and even churned out about the first 200 words on 18. I didn't expect to do that, 18's the one I've been dreading getting to. One of those "Ok, I know that stuff needs to happen here, but I'm not quite sure what yet" places. I always figured I'd know what, when I got there, but now I'm there and I still don't have more than the vaguest clue.

Ah well, I'm just glad 17 is done.

Again, with the weekend upon me, I probably won't get much done. Local Renn Fest is in full swing, and the kiddo is clamoring to go. I wouldn't mind going myself, it's one of my favorite things to do. (and yes, we do dress up in rennaissance garb. Probably won't this weekend, though)

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Molasses in January

Would be faster than I'm writing, right now.

I managed another 600-ish words on chapter 17 today, but it's far from finished. I'm not sure if my creativity is lagging, or my Real Job (tm) is just sucking my will to live. Then, there's the matter of this nasty sinus headache that popped up out of nowhere today. That, I blame on the impending thunderstorms that should be arriving any minute now.

I hate storms, I'm not real fond of my Real Job (tm) right now, and I loathe loathe loathe not writing up to my own speed standards.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Today's Efforts

I finished chapter 16, but we're going to call it a "grudging" finish. I don't like it, I really don't, and yet I'm not sure how to fix it. BUT! (there's always a but. Not to be confused with a butt) But, this is...say it with me kiddies...Just a first draft!

There! I said it! Deep breath. Someday, I'll even believe it.

I know I need to force myself to do this. I can't get hung up on the nitpicky details, I MUST get the story down first, then I can tinker to my heart's content. It's all will power over neurosis at this point.

So, I've moved on to Chapter 17 (about 200 words in, it was a rough day at the Real Job(tm) ), and chapter 16 will be shoved to the back of my mind to let my subconcious brew up something brilliant.

I hope.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Book Report

So... I let my bestest bud and medical consultant, Gita, read the first 15 chapters of project number 2. And, jokingly, I told her that she was required to write a 500 word book report on it.

And she did.

Granted, she wrote it on the level of a second grader, but I found it hilarious, and decided that I would post my first ever book report/review here, for all to see. (with her permission, of course)

"Why I like Jesse Dawson"

Jesse Dawson is a really cool guy! I like him because he fights offmonsters, and demons, and other really bad things. He is always nice to other people and not the bad things. He does get beaten up a lot which is not good. He has a very nice daughter. She reminds me of my little sister. She can't eat without getting food all over either. My sister is a very silly person, and she is always stealing my clothes with I do not like. I want to cut her down with a sword, just like Jesse does with the crab demon.

Jesse's wife also seems nice. She is a witch, but not like the witch in the Wizard of Oz, she is a good witch. She performs all kinds of really cool spells on people. I do not like the talking squirrel. Grandpa says that squirrels aren't good for anything and just steel acorns off our tree. Squirrels are silly creatures.

I don't like the baseball player. He seems mean. Anyone who sells their soul to a demon is up to no good. And I am pretty sure that Jesus would not approve. He needs to go to church or have Sr. Delarosa yell at him for being bad.

I want to work in a store just like Jesse Dawson. I like music, and I really want to dye my hair pink, but my mom won't let me. She can be really mean sometimes too, and doesn't understand that I want my dress to match my hair. I also want to be able to carry a sword around so that Shaun Bell and other bullies will not pick on me. If they do pick on me then I can just pull out my magic sword and make them cry.

My favorite charecter is the doctor. She is really cool! She fixes Jesse back up after he gets beaten up by crab demons. someday I want to be a doctor too. It seems like it would be the best job in the whole world.

I am looking forward to the end of the book. I hope no one dies. Except for maybe the bad baseball player. Of course if he dies then he will go to hell because he sold his soul to the demon. And wishing that someone goes to hell is not a very Christian thing to do, so I suppose he will have to live. But he should be made to feel very sorry for what he has done. I also hope that Jesse remembers to buy his mother a birthday present. He will be in big trouble with his mother if he forgets. And birthday parties are not fun without presents, and lots of cake and ice cream. And there should be balloons at a birthday party too. And all of Jesse's friends, Marty, Will, and Lori, plus his wife and daughter should be there. Then it would be a reallly big party, and everyone will live happily ever after.
The End.

If anyone bothered counting, it came in at 507 words.

And there you have it, the bare bones of some of project #2's plot, in a rather simplistic nutshell. Hope everyone is having a good holiday weekend!