Life is happy.
I just realized I haven’t written here all week. Bad, bad Abigail. (Nor have I found a job.) MOving on however…
Facebook status last night:
Today is a happy day. My characters FINALLY started talking to me. Only took them until Chapter 35. I so did not want to start my first draft without them talking though, so we are good now. :D Thank you, Sagi, Ber and Avi! Now Nessa… about you….
Now, besides the fact that all my friends now know I’m crazy, this is really good news.
See, I’ve been having a problem connecting with characters in the way that I need to connect in order to write a good book. The last story this really happened with initially was Shad, and I think that had to do with the fact I thought about writing it for over a year before I actually wrote it.
Instead of trying to force my characters to talk to me, I turned back to how I learned to listen to characters and began writing in a modified role playing format. I call it my pre-first draft and you know how bad first drafts are suppose to be? This is worse. :)
In short, I only add the details I know. I put in dialogue as I feel it works, some emotions, indications that the character speaks, but nothing extra. I’ve been doing this since March and just now I’m figuring out how the houses look.
The problem with this is that if the characters don’t start talking to me by the end of this, it’s really hard for me to edit and typically I toss the story before I finish it, putting a good two months of work to waste.
However, since this is the first time I’ve done it with a novel, I can say I do believe that this is going to work. Three of my main characters are finally clicking with me, and really giving me a clue about themselves. The only problem I have is actually my main character, Nessa, but she’s a little more complicated than my other characters so I think it’ll be fine.
As for weekly word count, I’ll post that tonight because I’m hoping to finish my current chapter before tonight. (I don’t write from Friday night to Saturday night, since someday this’ll be work, but that’s another post.)
Oh, and right now I’m toying with the idea of naming mermaids “For Keren.” It’s not a very strong title I don’t think, but it’s a common theme that a lot of the characters say. Just a thought. Maybe “Avicherfa” would be better though, since she is the real motivating factor behind a lot of things.
Mermaids last week: 30,470
Mermaids this week: 37,584
Total this week: 7,114
However, I did not finish my chapter. I perhaps wrote… 100 words today. Bad Abigail.
Another productive week.
Word count for last week: 24,985
Word count for this week: 30,470
Total for the week: 5485
The only problem is that I discovered I’m on Chapter Twenty-Eight. That, in itself, isn’t bad. However, I estimate only forty chapters total. Which means I am basically 3/4 of the way done.
Well, technically, because looking what I have coming up, I know I’m missing things, and I also know these chapters will be on the larger size. I’m also writing a very rough draft, to the point that if I don’t know something, I just skip it. The idea is to get the story on paper and come back to it. So maybe, just maybe, I can get it up to 120,000 by the end of my first draft. (This is a pre-first draft as i call it. So bad that no one should see it ever.) From there, I can then drop it to 100,000. Either way, I’m not going to worry about it yet. This story should be solid enough as it is.
The productive week.
I said I would start posting my word counts, to encourage me. :) Well, so much for that. I did, however, write this week so I might as well admit it.
Last time I posted, I had 19,009 words competed in mermaids. Since i didn’t write for almost two weeks, we can assume that is the same number. This week I have 24,985, which means that I wrote 5976 words.
Not only that, but I also imputed the paper edits of Shad’s synopsis, all 7 pages.
Oh, and I think I came up with a good enough title for Shad, at least until someone can really give me ideas: The Sweeper Pilot. Preferably it’d be fun of it showed up on the book as The
Sweeper Pilot, but I think that works well enough. What do you think?
This was a productive week.
I read a book.
I know; that isn’t a good thing to say as a writer. But with college and my own writing, my fear of not having a good book, and the sad lack of books we have available at the library in South Dakota, I haven’t picked up one in possibly a year.
Wow! I forgot how good it is to just read a good book.
I read Imager, by Modesitt. It sounded pretty good, so I asked to borrow it from a friend. I didn’t start it for almost a week. Once I did though, and I actually got passed page 60, I started finding it incredibly interesting. I almost literally couldn’t put it down and would bribe myself to clean a section of the house, read a chapter, clean, read, clean, read. (I had to clean; I wanted to read.)
Now, don’t mistake this for a review of the book. I actually think it was a little slow and a little confusing, and I wished I had a map. But I’m more focusing on the fact that I read a book and leave my reviews for amazon.
I actually did it based on someone’s advice. I didn’t want to write and all I could think about was reading. I just wanted to be swept away into a story.
And suddenly, I want to write again. It’s like after seeing a beautiful world created and put to right, with fun characters, plots and intrigue, I wanted to put that kind of magic on paper. For really, in many ways, it is magic. Think about it in that we as writers get to sweep someone up in a world of our own creating, and hide them in it for a while.
I’m now ready to write again. In fact, since Saturday night, I wrote 5000 words, which tallies out to about three or four chapters. Yes, I’m writing small chapters. I like doing it better that way.
So now I’m looking for more books to read, and I want to soon modify this website and include a page on my recommended books in sci-fi and fantasy. I don’t have a lot right now, but hopefully they’ll grow.
So like I said, I want to give a word count every week. So anyway, last week I had 17, 820 words in Mermaids. Unfortunately I did not get my goal accomplished. I only got halfway through the second half (dumb school got in the way). However, I am now up to 19,009 words in Mermaids. So perhaps only a 1000 of so words this week, but not too bad if I do say so myself.
As for my goal next week, I want to get to chapter 19 by next week.
One, two, three… one hundred and twenty thousand.
For a while now, I’ve been trying to figure someway to track my progress in writing on here. I don’t know if any apps or widgets that would actually do it. However, I think I have a new plan.
Now, you all probably know about my “new plans.” Just look at my welcome message. I totally haven’t followed that in months. However, here’s the thing. I think it’ll work, so long as I remember.
Because the end of the week for me is Friday, on either Friday afternoon or Saturday evening I’ll post how many words I am into the story and how many I wrote this week. Editing with obviously be done by pages.
So with that being said, I currently have….
17820 words in Mermaids.
I’d like to write two chapters (at least) by the end of next week. And since those are going to both be hard chapters, I don’t think that’s too undershooting (not to mention how many other papers I have to write as well. )
Summer is always full of goals. And goals tend to not always be met. So here is my quesiton of the week for you.
What summer writing goals did you have, and how well did you do on it?
See my Friday Post for my reply, since I did basically answer this there.
Yesterday I spent a good hour writing blog posts and summarize topics I want to blog about later. My goal was to write up the posts last night but, I studied late, didn’t finish dinner until late then, and realized I had a scholarship to write that is due today. (I know. Brilliant on my part.)
The scholarship wants us to write a 250 word essay about why I chose a career in nursing. So I figured it would be about a five paragraph essay, I wrote lots of those in highschool, so I would just write it like that. I outlined it, summed up my points and wrote.
First word count: 566 words.
So, I went through it, editing it as I went and came out with my second draft. Word count: 500.
I ended up cutting out almost everything I could, to the point that I barely have my typical five paragraph essay, to get to a grand total of 263 words. I figure that close enough, I can’t cut anything else, so I’m done.
I will tell you it is the hardest thing in the world to cute something down from 566 words to 263 words. I wish it could be better. I almost wish that I decided to write a poem instead, so I could say more. There is so much more than what I said in my essay about why i chose nursing. But some of it I don’t know how to explain. How do I explain that I partly went into nursing because, if I was needed to, I could go overseas and help? Or that I could become a midwife maybe someday? Or that I want to teach people?
I can’t say to be honest how to cut words. I know now to look for phrases that can be described in smaller words and prepositions. And try not to save it for the last minute. You would think I would have learned by now, don’t you?
So, I started a story called Dragon Slayers that I’ve mentioned earlier. If’s just a short little book. Technically, I could do a lot with it later on. There are so many spinoffs that one could do with it, but I doubt I will at this time.
Anyway, today, I finished the rough draft. I am so happy.
NOw, I’m not as excited about it as I was when I finished Darkness Swallows. But, I do think that it has potential. I’m not quite sure how to end it exactly, or where, because it ends up being a huge tear jerker with no hope if I end it where it should be ended. I’d like for there to be some hope in the ending. But I don’t want to have too much.
Anyway, it’s pretty cool. I need to do a lot more with characters and such and how the characters think and act. There isn’t a lot of emotion in the characters and I don’t like that. But it might not be as bad as I think.
Final count for now is 1,000 words and 19 pages. I’m rather pleased. But now i must go to bed before it gets too late here. I do have school (and a test) in the morning.
(Oh, side note: I finished the second paper edit of DArkness Swallows, just in time too. That is due this Friday.)
how did that happen?
My logic is to writing is write fast, edit later. When I write like that, I usually get whole paragraphs where I just repeated what I wrote in the previous two paragraphs. Utterly boring and unnecessary. Thus, when I write something I can usually count on lose some pages (or words, depending on how you count it) from my original count.
So when Kontyo came out at around 20 pages and 11,000 words, I was rather happy. (I’m aiming for less than 17,000 because I’m hoping to enter Kontyo also into the writer’s of the future contest. I was also hoping to do that with Giant’s Wife, before it came out at 46,000 words.)
Since I finished it yesterday, I did the final touch ups today (well, probably not totally final, but it’s practically done.). Then, I did another word count and it comes out at not less than 11,000 words but at 12,000 words and 25 pages! This is suppose to be a short story.
Now, I’m not sure what is exactly short. For the library’s writing contest in MN, they wanted about ten pages in the beginning. When they actually put a limit on pages, they put it at about 7. But this contest at school doesn’t have a limit, a topic, or anything, and it is driving me crazy, because I don’t know if this is technically write, and their tougher on grammar here I would think as well.
My harder part comes from finding a title now. I have a clue about something with darkness swallowing up people or disappearing in darkness or something. Maybe I’ll just post it anyway, but I need a title sooner rather than later. Contest ends January 31st and I’d rather submit it no later than the 12th. Who knows what kind of homework I’m going to have by then.