I typically write rough drafts in the order I expect the scenes to be in ultimately. Sometimes they'll get moved around in revision, but I pretty much start in the first scene and work sequentially to the end. Sometimes if a scene later than the one I'm wanting to be working on is particularly loud, I'll jot down enough notes for it to feel confident I'll remember the important bits of it, then go back to whatever is supposed to be happening next.
This week hasn't gone like that. Last Sunday, I wrote 2,606 words in what I called Chapter Nineteen. Monday and Tuesday I wrote nothing, instead entertaining my husband on the days he had to spend quarantined before surgery.
Wednesday my husband had surgery to replace his pacemaker. (Yeah, he's forty-two and on his second pacemaker. He's an interesting person.) I couldn't go with him. Due to COVID protocols only one family member could be there with him and that person had to be able to drive after dark, which isn't something I can do. So I stayed home and tried not to think too much about what was going at the hospital several towns over.
Since I was mostly wanting to drown my thoughts, I wrote the scene that was strongest in my head instead of Chapter Twenty. I'm now thinking what I wrote will likely be Chapter Thirty-Three. It's currently 1,794 words, but I've already thought of several things to add to it.
Today, I wrote Chapter Nineteen.
Were you paying attention earlier when I said I wrote Chapter Nineteen last Sunday? Well, it turns out that was Chapter Twenty. It's better for pacing that way and keeps me from having two chapters that focus on the same character too close to each other.
I've also spent a lot of time reworking the second half of my outline. I figured out a few details that had been hazy before. A lot of stuff got cut. Some stuff got added. Several things got moved to happen earlier or later. Hopefully once I actually write all those scenes, they won't move around much, but I guess we're going to have to see.
I wrote 7,639 words this week. That's not too bad considering there were four whole days of not writing a word while I tried to take care of the husband. (Who was really pitiful Thursday and Friday! He's still kind of pitiful, having gone to work today.)
I'm excited about what's slated for tomorrow, which is always a good feeling, and satisfied with my progress thus far. I'm 65,886 words in. The WriteTrack computer is now telling me I only need to average 1203 words on my scheduled workdays to finish 120,000 words by mid-April. Of course, 120,000 remains an estimate, but I think it's probably still a decent one.
And now I'm going to read a little and go to sleep. :)
The first week and a half of February went well, although I have been forgetting to post updates here. I have been updating WriteTrack, though. WriteTrack is a handy tool for helping create a pace that will get you to your goal in time as well as for giving you visual representations of your progress. It's a bit like the system over on the NaNo WriMo site, except instead of forcing you to agree to do the same amount every day, it allows you to do things like say, "I always take off Sunday, make Sunday goals zero. And Wednesday I have to stop early, so make those 50%." I currently have one day completely off and one day at half measure per week, although this week is playing out a little differently due to other people's work schedules changing. I can always write more than expected on a given day, but this allows me to not feel bad days when there's just too much other life going on.
But back to my current status! This is what my chart and calendar page looks like today:
From this, we can see that I under-performed some days, but not by as much as I tend to over-perform on other days. This is helpful to remember on days when I fall short of goals.
The last chart shows total accumulation over time, charting your novel's growth against its target growth.
Today I wrote 3357 words, which explains why my brain feels a little too mushy to write much about having written. I've completed 8562 words this week, which I feel is doing pretty decently. My total word count for the project is now 25,858.
I have finished nine chapters. My current outline has 43, but I seem to be more prone to consolidating chapters than adding them at this point, so that doesn't necessarily mean that I'm looking at something like 110,00 for my total. The only reason being on schedule to create a book over 100k makes me nervous is that I traditionally add a lot more in future drafts than I take out. I'm not sure if that will be true in this case or not. On one hand, I am doing a lot of telling rather than showing in describing actions and reactions, so those sections are going to get expanded later when I go back and turn things like, "Her expression was one of heartbreak," into much longer sentences displaying what that actually means. On the other hand, there seems to be a lot of banter that's expanding the universe but might be able to be written more tightly once I get the concepts fully fleshed out in my mind.
I expect to write a decent amount over the next two days as I will be Home Alone with only one hockey match to watch. I expect I'll make it to 30k unless something unexpected happens, like if I decide to binge the new liveaction Winx show on Netflix instead of writing or if the house is hit by a tornado or something. (One of these examples is much more likely than the other.)
Wow. It's really been a while since I updated this, huh?
I wrote some shorts during my silence and completely outlined another reboot of Faerie Story. The first book is detailed down to the scene and while the following two are more broadly plotted. And I'm now eleven thousand words into actually writing said reboot.
Yesterday I wrote 2.5k without breaking a sweat. Today I'm at 998 and exhausted. Part of the difference, I think, is that today's work followed the character with the anxiety disorder. She's just more draining to write than the others, which makes me glad I switched from her being the first-person narrator and am now going with a third person that spends a lot of time focused on other people.