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Day 11: Different day, different genre?

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

18,416:  just a hair above the goal of 18,337 words.

Like the first day I sat down to work on this project, I came to the keyboard with no clue where to pick up.  After procrastinating a good part of the morning away – overslept, washed some dishes, checked my email (big no-no), contemplated going back to bed…, I finally put fingers to keys and typed.  And, like the first day of this project, the words came.  One of my secondary characters decided she needed to step into the action again, and there’s the new guy who needs further development. 

I also took a little time out to work up a timeline to keep my dates and seasons straight.  There is a lot going on and many moving parts.

The surprising development of the day is that I’m toying with the idea of magical realism - especially with the emergence of this new guy and some things in my main character’s background that could lend a mystical quality.

Mmm.  It just might work.


NaNoWriMo - Day 10 & I have a few hairs left.

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

16,984 words.

How many books have you read or movies have you watched with a critical eye, pointing out the problems and saying, “I could have done a better job than that"?  You know, it’s really not as easy as it looks.

What started for me as an idea and, for the first several days, seemed to be taking shape with little effort has morphed into a sluggish, droll blur of words strung into sentences that bear so little resemblance to anything readable that I’m embarrassed to even open the file and continue.

Is mid-novel too late to outline?  I think I need an outline.

I added a character today – a new guy - because my main character needs more depth.  I mean, she is who the story is all about, but she is the person to whom I’ve really paid the least attention.  She needs a life – especially if I’m going to make a reader care that she loses it.  This new guy promises me he’ll not be a minor player in this adventure.  He likes to be the center of attention; or, at least as close as he can get.

So, I continue.


Day 5 - NaNo Word Count

Thursday, 05 November 2009


Do novelists really count their words every day?  I doubt it.  Unless you're writing an article or short-story for publication, where word count is a key consideration, keeping a tally of words is a silly way to measure the quality of a story.

Of course, NaNo is different.  NaNo is all about word count and process over product.  It's been said that it takes about a month of repetition for a behavior to become habit.  One of the purposes of NaNo is to encourage wanna be writers into the habit of writing.

If you can keep up a pace of 1600-2000 words a day for 30 days, preferably blocking the same set of hours each day, then writing will become habit.  The habit of daily practice will improve your writing.

Today I closed with a NaNo word count of 11,497.  This last 2000 words were really tough to pry out.  I had many distractions; I lost direction.  Today was a heavy dialogue day, which I find extremely difficult to write, especially because my inner critic is so adamant that I'll never live up to my expectations.  My mind wandered over to chores that need to be done.  Papers that should be filed.  My fingernails that need trimming.  Anything but scraping together that next line of dialogue.

The results are painfully unspectacular.

Despite the rough day, I will carry on, even laughing at what I've written because if I believed these words were the end and the best I could do, I'd surrender to my inner critic and cry.

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