I’ve always been a night owl. 10pm rolls around and suddenly I’m full of ideas and a burning desire to start projects and be creative. This is especially true for my writing, since the late evening is generally the only part of my day that offers any quiet or solitude.
The drawback to this is that when I’m really on a roll with my writing I tend to start keeping vampire hours, writing from 10pm until 3-4am. Sometimes I greet the dawn with bleary eyes before retiring to my coffin. This wreaks havoc with the rest of my life, of course. Responsibilities and commitments suffer, my family never sees me, and the house looks a mess. Make dinner? What do you mean? I just woke up!
Tomorrow is August 26th, which will mark exactly two months from the day I finished my second draft of Chaos. Instead of diving right into draft 3, as I intended, I had a number of non-writing-related projects fall into my lap over the summer. While I’m not usually happy about having very little time to write, I think it may work out to be a good thing in this instance. A little distance from a story is helpful when you’re contemplating changes on any significant level.
As I cast nervous glances at the novel, and the list of revision ideas I’ve compiled over the past few weeks (even if I’m not writing, I’m still THINKING about writing!), I’m also thinking more about what will come after this next pass. I’m very much hoping that draft 3 will be my last major rewrite before I start down the path to try to get it published.
CJ Jessop, a good writer friend, is a little further down that path herself. Right now her novel, which I had the opportunity to beta-read (and vastly enjoyed!), is out on submission and she keeps me regularly updated on how that’s going. While I agonize her over every rejection, because I like both her and the book so much, it’s been neat watching her go through the submission process, and I think it’s taken a little of the fear out of it for me.
I’ll be back to biting my nails to a quick once it’s time to send Chaos out, no doubt, but it’s nice to feel like the path is being personally blazed for you before you get there. If you want to read along with CJ as she attempts to get her first novel published, you can check out her blog here.
My second draft of Chaos is complete at 163,020 words. This is actually the first time I’ve had a complete, consecutive manuscript with no holes and nothing missing–everything would make sense read front to back.
My husband was thrilled. This was the birthday present he’d specifically asked for, and I managed it 2 days early. My kids did a little happy dance around me in the kitchen, and my youngest (who was only a year and a half old when I began this project) offered me a celebratory sip of his juice in honor of the momentous occasion. Read more
Ooh, gettin’ closer!
Plowing through the last few scenes, trying to get this all wrapped up by Friday. It’s starting to look like I’m going to land somewhere around 165k rather than my previously estimated 170k.
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, my novel meter has moved.
I think I might be able to make my June 28th deadline for Draft 2, at which point it will be time to come back around and start cutting this monster down to a manageable size.
CJ Jessop, a beta reader for Chaos, and one of my bestest writing buddies (whose contract-signing party I’m sure I’ll be vicariously attending very soon) has tagged me with a Q&A for my novel-in-progress. I suspect she did it because I sent her my most recent chapter two months ago and haven’t made any noises since.
All right, all right! Hindquarters officially in gear 😉 Read more
That is one hefty stack of paper. I’ve heard some writers say they prefer editing a hard copy of their manuscript, so on a whim I thought I’d give it a try.
Wow, did I underestimate what that would entail.
After blowing through one brand new ink cartridge on my printer, and draining most of a second, I chickened out and settled for just printing out Chapters 5-15.Yeah, that’s not the whole thing. It’s roughly 65,000 words–less than half of the total length. And I’m not even finished yet! I still have a few holes to plug, and I’m guessing I’ll have around 170,000 words once I’ve done. Read more
I began my current novel four years ago. I know, that sounds like forever. I wrote feverishly for two months, and at the end of that time I had about 70k words. Not too bad!
But oh, what’s this, now? An inconsistency in the plot?
It wasn’t really anything major, but I couldn’t let it sit. I couldn’t help but tug on it, like a loose sweater thread, and suddenly my entire story started to unravel. Now it wasn’t just one inconsistency that needed fixing, but by association the rest of the plot was cast into doubt. No matter which way I looked at it, I couldn’t figure my way out of the mess I’d created.
I was stuck. I stayed that way for two years—which I recommend avoiding if you possibly can. Read more
This is a post about writing, I promise.
Since I write fantasy, I know a lot about killing tension. Fantasy and other spec-fic writers have a ton of information and backstory to convey, and more often than not this results in the story coming to a screeching halt. Epic fantasy, in particular, tends toward long, drawn-out ‘saggy bits’ that can try even the most patient reader’s tolerance.
So, as I wrestle over my own cartload of infodumpery, I’ve been trying to figure out the solution. Read more