I figure it’s time for an update on life.
First, I’ve been busy. My baby sister turned 4 yesterday. (So big!) So we had a birthday party.
I’ve been cleaning, getting ready for Thanksgiving, playing adult Tetris by trying to figure out how to get a 20 pound turkey into the fridge… I’ve been crocheting, knitting, reading, trying to stay sane… and oh, yeah! Writing.
Let’s face it; you guys were probably most interested in that last one.
LASER is coming along beautifully. I outlined what I have left of the story (a page and a half! And that first page’s margins are covered in notes…) and I’ve been writing 550 words every day almost consistently for a week (it wasn’t planned). My story is coming all together as I work toward the low point and then the end. Right now, this story is pretty decent. I still see some flaws and a few things I’m concerned about, but right now it’s pretty good.
550 words a day is not enough to finish this story by the end of November. It’s not even enough to finish within the next few weeks. That, and my low point is trying to come in 20 pages early.
But you know what? I’m okay with not finishing by the end of NaNo.
I would rather not freak out. I would rather enjoy this first draft process. I only get one chance to first draft LASER— anything after this is a rewrite.
The only possible way to write as much as I need to finish in 6 days would be an insane amount of word wars. But not only have we (me and a few writing friends) pretty much stopped having word wars (we still do on occasion, but not often)… I don’t want to become dependent on word wars to get me through a first draft. Yes, they are helpful, but often they work because of peer pressure. “Everyone else is writing and it would be embarrassing to have not written anything during these 15 minutes.” Or it’s competition, but when your writing buddies are churning out 1k every 15 minute sprint… makes your 250 not look so good. Also, word wars encourage fluff– that stuff you don’t really need in the story.
Long story short, I don’t really want to write a novel that I will have to edit every word of. Nor do I want to force myself into a nervous breakdown because I couldn’t finish my story before a certain time. I want time to live, to do other things besides write. Writing is my passion, but even passions can’t be done all the time.
Professional authors don’t write 24-7. Maggie Stiefvater raises goats and plays music and draws (and a million other things). Brandon Sanderson plays roleplaying games. Mary Robinette Kowal sews beautiful Regency era drses.
I want time to blog. I want time to crochet and knit. I want time to watch a movie with my sister (or alone). I want time to brainstorm (I think we all know that some of the best ideas do not come when we are actively writing). I want time to spend with my family.
So. Here is my plan.
I will continue to fight procrastination. I will continue to try raising my word count (because while 550 is great, I can do better). I will not work myself into a nervous wreck.
I will finish LASER within the next few weeks if I possibly can. (Once it is finished, I will reveal more about the story.) I will then type it up, doing minor edits (fixing where I skipped places and fixing some of the things my edit notes flagged). While typing it up, I will work on another project first draft (to keep me from editing too much).
As I type, I will be sending the story to my foremost alpha reader (Hi, Mom! *waves*) chapter by chapter. She will be catching serious typos and anything that sounds off. The rest of my alphas will get the story when it is completely typed up. (Probably around Christmas or New Year.)
And then… I wait. Wait for feedback. I start a new project (or finish the one I was working on) and get myself ready to edit.
Honestly, I am looking forward to editing LASER.
So, what ‘sup with you?