Writing Progress October 10 – 16, 2016

DailyWritingProgress

October 10

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 186,938
  • Today’s word count: 233
  • Thoughts: I did write more than yesterday, but I want to be back on track with my word counts already! I’m trying to cut myself a bit of slack because I’m not feeling 100% but I need to write more than anything else right now.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Get back on track with the writing.

October 11

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 188,457
  • Today’s word count: 1,519
  • Thoughts: You know, sometimes I saw I need to write a lot and I actually manage to do it. Those are the good days. Today was a good day.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: A little revision and more of the same with writing.

October 12

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 190,023
  • Today’s word count: 1,566
  • Thoughts: Wow. I don’t know how I did it. I had to stay up late to get the words, but I did it and here I am. It’s shocking. I’m exhausted, but it’s a good kind of exhausted.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Revision. More writing. I want to keep this streak going!

October 13

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 190,649
  • Today’s word count: 626
  • Thoughts: Not as spectacular of a word count as I would like. I did write plenty and I’m pretty happy with the progress I made, but I got distracted a lot today and hit a mental roadblock pretty late at night. Instead of staying up and trying to fight it, I decided to go to sleep and try again in the morning.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: More of the writing thing. Continue to get this week’s chapter ready for posting.

October 14

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 190,967
  • Today’s word count: 318
  • Thoughts: Crappy, crappy writing day. I don’t know what happened. I guess I just didn’t work out the knot in the scene like I’d hoped.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Keep writing. Post chapter.

October 15

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 191,534
  • Today’s word count: 567
  • Thoughts: The pattern of having stuff come up over the weekend that distracts or takes me away from my writing continues. I can’t complain too much because I know these distractions are about the only thing I have going on to keep my life from being endless monotony, but combined with my self-imposed deadlines these weekend distractions really stress me out.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Actually get this week’s chapter posted. More writing. So much more writing.

October 16

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 192,316
  • Today’s word count: 782
  • Thoughts: I wrote more today, but not enough. I had the words in me. I could feel them! The problem is that I had those words at 1 a.m. and I did not have the energy to see the ideas that came to my mind all the way through.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: More writing. So much more writing. I can only hope that the ideas will still be in the back of my mind waiting for me today.
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The Dreams: Chapter Forty Six

the dreams cover

Cover by A. R. Shellnut

Sorry about this chapter being late! Being almost caught up to the point in the novel I’m writing is really messing with my revision mojo. Forgive me!

I hope that this chapter was worth the wait. As always, be sure to let me know about any errors in the chapter or any other issues you might have with it.

My goal is still to finish writing The Dreams this month. As of right now, it looks like the last chapter will be posted in either November or December. Starting on November 1, I’ll be posting the first draft of my next novel on my Patreon. Once The Dreams is finished I’ll start revising and posting the second draft here, but the first draft will continue to be a patrons-only thing.

With this chapter like every other chapter, I owe a huge thank you to my fantastic supporters. If you enjoy my writing please consider becoming my Patron.

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Endings are HARD!

I hate writing the end of stories. I know a lot of people have a hard time getting started, and I don’t think beginnings are particularly easy either. I find beginnings easier to handle because once you’re past a certain point the beginning is behind you and you can breathe a sigh of relief.

Endings loom in the distance. I know from page one that I’ll have to write an ending eventually, but for a long while it’s not a problem. Then, almost out of nowhere, it is time to wrap up the story.

Then I panic. I shut down. Endings are just too hard.

Everything written before has been building up to this ending. That’s a lot of expectations and a lot of baggage to deal with. Anticipation has been building for weeks or even months as I built this story up from a blank page.

I start to lose my nerve. I question my ability to do the story justice. Writer’s block sets in.

I can keep pushing forward, but every day is a battle. No matter what I won’t give up. After making it this far I have to see the story through. One way or another the story will reach its conclusion.

Do you struggle with endings? What do you do to help make endings easier to write?

 

Writing Progress October 3 – 9, 2016

DailyWritingProgress

October 3

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 183,444
  • Today’s word count: 1,259
  • Thoughts: I wrote a lot today. I’m pretty proud of the progress I made.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: More writing, I hope.

October 4

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 183,451
  • Today’s word count: 7
  • Thoughts: I had an interesting day. I woke up at 5 and went with my mom to an outpatient procedure and spent the day hanging out with her because of anesthesia. Today I also learned that Dropbox is no longer supported on Windows XP so my tiny portable writing machine isn’t synced with my WIP anymore. I spent most of the day reading or too exhausted to write properly. My mom is doing great though so I’m happy about that.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Write. Write so much and make up for the lack of writing.

October 5

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 184,084
  • Today’s word count: 633
  • Thoughts: This is better, but still not a great writing day. I’m working on getting back on track with my writing momentum.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: More writing and revising, of course.

October 6

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 184,787
  • Today’s word count: 703
  • Thoughts: I’m getting a little bit closer to reaching my target goal every day!
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Keep going! I’m not going to stop until I’m actually back on track!

October 7

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 186,369
  • Today’s word count: 1,582
  • Thoughts: I finally did it! It took me the entire first week of October, but I finally wrote 1,500 words in one day. Now I just need to keep it up.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: More writing. Oh! And I’ll be posting a chapter. Can you believe The Dreams is up to 45 chapters?!

October 8

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 186,510
  • Today’s word count: 141
  • Thoughts: Today was interesting to say the least. Scrivener was throwing a fit for a while and stopped responding multiple times. I think I lost more than an hour of productivity to straightening that out. I did manage to get this week’s chapter posted though and I wrote a tiny bit too.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: More writing. Hopefully a lot more writing.

October 9

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 186,705
  • Today’s word count: 195
  • Thoughts: I wanted to write a lot today, but I spent time with family instead. I had a great time and I hope it will leave me feeling recharged and ready to make a ton of progress with my writing next week.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Writing. Lots and lots of writing.

8 Steps for Motivating Yourself to Write

This is a great list of ways to motivate yourself to write. I’ve done a lot of these myself to get my writing started. It’s good to see that I’m not the only one that needs to try multiple things from time to time to get the words to come out.

At this point, I even have a ritual to get my energy up. I usually get a lot of my writing done at night and I tend to run out of energy between 9 and 10 p.m. Now I have a ritual dance party around that time and when I’m done dancing I sit down and write for an hour or so. It’s a combination of steps 2 and 5 on your list.

Eve Messenger's OtherWORDly Endeavors

Dreaming up stories and watching them come to life on the page is pure magic. It really is. I love being a writer. So why is it that some days facing my manuscript is the hardest thing to do in the world?

Because writing good books is HARD.
lisa-simpson-writing.gifWriting and editing can feel like wading through quicksand. Life’s distractions can pull so hard away from the writing desk that it feels impossible to muster the mental energy to write.

That’s when I pull out the big guns.
Image result for cannon firing gif

When my writing resistance is at its highest, I take out my writing motivation checklist. If I’m lucky, I’ll only need to do a couple of items before I feel pumped enough to write. Other times–when writing-resistant inner me throws a particularly nasty tantrum–I might need to hit every item on the darn list.

Ultimately, the list helps me overcome resistance to writing. Maybe it will help you, too. And if you’ve discovered other effective ways to motivate yourself to write, I’d love to…

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The Dreams: Chapter Forty Five

the dreams cover

Cover by A. R. Shellnut

This chapter and probably the next few are going to be a bit less polished than I would like. In a perfect world I wouldn’t be revising until I could look at the chapter with fresh eyes, but jumping around and working on scenes I was comfortable with has caused us to become very nearly caught up to the part of the story I’m writing. I don’t want to stop sharing chapters so I’ll just do my best to get the writing cleaned up. My goal here is just to be sure that I’m posting something that is of better quality than my first draft.

Speaking of first drafts, I’m going to start writing my next serial in November for NaNoWriMo. I’ll be sharing my first draft every day on Patreon so be sure to head over to my Patreon before November if you’re interested in seeing the next novel before anyone else.

With this chapter like every other chapter I owe a huge thank you to my fantastic supporters. If you enjoy my writing please consider becoming my Patron.

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Writing Progress September 26 – October 2, 2016

DailyWritingProgress

September 26

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 180,003
  • Today’s word count: 101
  • Thoughts: Today was not the big return to writing that I had hoped for. I guess my brain is having trouble switching back to writing after being stuck on revisions for so many days.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Get the writing brain properly switched back on.

September 27

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 180,322
  • Today’s word count: 319
  • Thoughts: Better, but not good. I need to write a lot more than this on a daily basis!
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Start revising. Get back on track with the writing thing!

September 28

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 180,753
  • Today’s word count: 431
  • Thoughts: I’m slowly building up my word count stamina again. At this point I’m still trying to figure out what is stopping me from reaching the word counts I was hitting earlier this month.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Revisions. More writing.

September 29

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 181,290
  • Today’s word count: 537
  • Thoughts: Better. Still not great, but my word counts are getting better. I wish I knew where all of the energy I had earlier this month went. It disappeared with my migraine and hasn’t returned. I miss it.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: More writing. More revising because I’m not finished with it. Again.

September 30

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 181,186
  • Today’s word count: -104
  • Thoughts: Revisions. Yay… I don’t know why I’m struggling with revisions lately. I think my lack of vision for the final arc of this story has really messed things up. The only reason I don’t have the vision for the end is because I’m afraid to end the story. So revisions are hard because writing has been hard.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: I need to get the chapter posted. That’s my number one priority.

October 1

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 181,123
  • Today’s word count: -63
  • Thoughts: A bit of writing. A bit of revision. It’s not the best start to the month, but I got the chapter posted so I’m trying not to be disappointed.
  • Tomorrow’s goal: Writing. Actual writing!

October 2

  • Project: The Dreams
  • Total word count: 182,185
  • Today’s word count: 1,062
  • Thoughts: I finally did a thing I told myself I’d do long, long ago. I pulled up Tomato Timer and did some sprints on my own. The first one was a bust but the second one was quite successful. Today’s word count is the result of two sprints!
  • Tomorrow’s goal: More sprinting, I think.

NaNoWriMo Prep: World Building.

This is a great list of questions to help with world building. A lot of times I have a general idea of my world when I start writing and I fill in the blanks as I write. That method is really messing me up with my current project and I intend to do better with my NaNoWriMo novel this year.

Holly Evans

NaNoWriMo prep world building

If you’re reading this you’re probably getting ready to dive into the NaNoWriMo trenches! That’s fantastic news, it’s a wonderful adventure with an incredible community.

I’ve put together a collection of questions to help you with your world-building. These are far from exhaustive, but hopefully they’ll help you get things straight in your head.

Basics.
  • What is your character’s daily environment like?
    • What does it look/smell/sound like?
    • What does that say about your character?
    • What other type of people live there?
    • What impact have the people had on the environment?
      • If it’s a city, have they marked it as theirs somehow? Graffiti, wards, architectural style choices?
      • What impact does the environment have on the people? Does it affect their fashion choices? Their food? Their freedom of movement?
    • What is the surrounding environment like? i.e. what’s the larger city like? Are there mountains a days’ walk away?
      • Why did the characters…

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30 Days Until NaNoWriMo

nanowrimo_2016_webbanner_participant

Wow! We only have 30 days until the big event begins. That’s not a lot of time! The NaNoWriMo website has been reset for the new writing season. It’s a wonderful, exciting time on the forums.

I’m still working on finishing up my current project. There’s still quite a way to go with it and that’s starting to make me a bit nervous. I’m still confident I can finish it before NaNoWriMo begins. All of the writing is at least good training for the sort of word counts I’ll need during NaNoWriMo. Now my word count goal is 1,500 words per day. I hope I can hit that target with some regularity.

Fortunately, I have a ton of material already gathered for my NaNoWriMo project. I’m doing a complete rewrite/reimagining of a project I first started in 2007. I already have a so much written about these characters and this world. I still don’t know how much of it I will keep in this new version, but it’s there for me to use. While most of my attention is still on my current project, I am trying to come up with a decent title for my NaNoWriMo novel.

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My story binder featuring two versions of this novel idea as well as notes and profiles dating back to 2007

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Bonus picture of the binder featuring Demi blurring her way into the picture. Such a helpful cat!

How are your NaNoWriMo preparations going? Do you have an idea? An outline? Are you working on building up your word count stamina like me?

The Dreams: Chapter Forty Four

the dreams cover

Cover by A. R. Shellnut

This chapter might be a little strange. Most of the time I try to let a chapter rest for a while before I got back and revise it so I see it with at least semi-fresh eyes. This time parts of the chapter were written just days before I jumped back in to revise. I’m not sure what that means for the quality of the chapter, but I think it means I’m less likely to be objective about what I wrote. Please let me know if you spot any serious issues with this chapter!

With this chapter like every other chapter I owe a huge thank you to my fantastic supporters. If you enjoy my writing please consider becoming my Patron.

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