Sunday, January 31, 2010

End of the Month Update

Well, I failed. I couldn't manage 50,000 words in one month.

In my defense, life hit hard and I started in the middle of the month.

I end January having written 16,000 words, bringing my novel's total to 73,000. I'm not so disappointed in myself for not making it, since I got some fairly good stuff written and I'm moving along in the story (A life-changing piece of information learned, oh no!). I would like to say February will be the month I finish this thing, as I shouldn't have that much longer to go, but I won't make it a definite; anything can happen in the next month, like, I don't know, me having to get a job to pay off some bills and finding myself too mentally drained at the end of each day to concentrate on words for a novel. Just putting it out there.

Nightmarish employment aside, I'm looking to February with a positive attitude. This novel will get done (the first novel I've completed in years, first novel over 60,000 words) by the end of the month, and then I can let it sit awhile before I get to do revisions...yay.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Bane of My Novel Completion

It's 5:19pm, and I've written maybe one hundred words of my novel (oh yeah, I'm so reaching that goal of 50k by the end of the month). I want to finish this novel, I really do, maybe I'll be alone on this, but I believe it has potential...and I like Taryn, and Satche. I'm undecided on Mars and Lady Cherie.

Anyway, my low word count wouldn't bother me so much if I didn't have other ideas vying for my attention. It's like having my nephew in my ear all day going "auntie, auntie, auntie," which he does whenever there isn't a game controller in his hands. But the ideas just buzz around in my head going "write me, write me, write me!" And they sound so much more appealing than fighting through the bog that is the middle of my novel (it's been too long since the four had to fight so I think I'll give them some exercise. Other than that, got nothin'). And not all of them are new ideas; most are just parts to the other WIP's I've put a hold on.

  • Tanessa and Brandon's life on the run
  • Just what, exactly, Hope and Loki find in the city
  • Nicole's introduction to the secret world around ours
  • Getting Mia and Noah to the snowy kingdom in the mountains
The biggest one of all, however, is the Urban Fantasy. That one screams at me, and it screams "I don't want to just be a short story, make me into a novel too!" I don't think I'd have enough of a plot to make a whole novel out of it, but that one certainly interests me.

All because I picked up that UF short story collection at the library in October.

Octavia and Natalia both insist on having more than a short story, and I like what they're saying, but they're getting in the way of finishing Serpenttongue. I would really like to avoid putting it on hold to explore another idea. I've done that already, more than once. I want to buckle down and get one finished!

But as the fight gets tougher that UF starts to look better.

I guess I could work on both...ugh, that's going to take quite a lot of time, but it might make the ideas shut up for awhile.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Winded...and Story Progress

Whew. It's been two days of writing a minimum of 1,700 words and has taken FOREVER to get through. Methinks I need to do a little more planning, which means I'll be carrying around that notebook in my purse and putting every spare second tomorrow at work in thinking about my story and where I want it to go next. I mean, I have a general idea of where they're going next, but just what is going to happen along the way, and what will happen when they get where they're going.

On the plus side, I did something I liked: I created a bit of tension and conflict between the Main Character and a Secondary Character. They're having a bit of a power-struggle. The Main Character is losing, and it's going to take a toll on her mentally...somehow. The tricky part will be continuing the struggle, dragging it out and making good use of it.

Here's hoping I figure something out tomorrow.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

[Insert month] Wri Mo

It's January 9th, nine days into the month of January (obviously) and I've hardly written much in my novel. I finished up what I thought was both an interesting and difficult chapter and then spent the past two days fooling around online (must not get addicted to AW, must not get addicted to AW...). I haven't had the desire to write anything else, which clashes with my whole finishing a novel this year goal.

A fellow blogger suggested I try JaNoWriMo, which is basically NaNoWriMo in January. It's funny how quickly I buckled down and decided to continue working hard on my novel after agreeing to take part. All I need, apparently, is a deadline, a goal to shoot for. I wouldn't say I'm one who works well under pressure, but not having anything to strive for just makes a lazy Charlene, and Charlene hates being lazy, productivity is her focus.

Now, looking at the novel not from the perspective of "oh I have 50k words to write still" but from the outlook of "I have to write 1,700 words today that relate to what I wrote yesterday in some way" makes me sigh in relief. Yes, finishing this novel might be possible...as I said before, if I managed 50k of a novel in November, I can certainly manage 50k this month and quite possibly every month.

And on that note, I need to start writing, because I've already missed eight days of writing and that's around 15k to write!

Do you find daily goals (words, paragraphs, pages) keep you moving even through the difficult parts?

Friday, January 8, 2010

So it's the New Year...

I'm not a big believer of New Year's Resolutions, or the whole "new year, new you" idea, but I DID make that promise to my doctor to worry less about what others think of me...

Okay, I guess you can call this a resolution. I want to finish a novel this year. I have roughly four (Serpenttongue, Wanted, Devil's Hand, untitled urban fantasy), but would like to finish at least one of them, and lately, my time has been with Serpenttongue...don't know why, it just has.

(OR it could be because Wanted requires a lot of thought and research, Devil's Hand is dark and takes me some thought to keep up the tone, and the Untitled is still in the "what is this story about?" phase).

When I was nine, back when I wrote the Out of Reality series, I managed to finish 50k novels in a matter of weeks (I think). There were at that point three or four of them. If it were for NaNoWriMo standards it would have been three or four months. Not bad, young me, not bad at all.

So what happened to older me?

I got in my way (look to previous post). I started thinking all my work was no good and too boring and all of that which slowed me down...well that and the depression of course. But I want to finish a novel that is greater than 60k for my own satisfaction (okay and yes, I will revise and submit to agents too). I think it would make me feel better to finally complete something.

So, here's to that goal that's looming over me.

Any writing resolutions/goals for the New Year?

Getting in the Way of Myself

It can be so rough having self-doubt. It constantly eats away at my dream of getting published with things like "you'll never be good enough," or "no one will want to read your boring junk." It takes a lot of my mental energy to keep writing through the doubt, hoping for the feeling of reward to come. But if its going to come, as I'm slowly learning, it's going to come from writing for myself, and not really to be published.

Why did I write that? Well, I did lose my train of though halfway through it, but it was all to say that I have been tripping myself up with all the negativity and comparing myself to others too harshly; I need to take time to sit back and just remind myself that someone may want to read my work, and if not, then I'll just have to write things that I'll like reading over and over again for my own enjoyment.

Yeah, I think that was it. What about you? Find yourself constantly getting in the way of your good writing?

Thursday, January 7, 2010

That Short Story You Wrote

Back in November of 2009 I wrote a urban fantasy short story. I had read a collection of urban fantasy short stories and wanted to try my hand at it. I finished it within a few weeks.

Now, it just sits on my computer...

I like the story, but a part of me fears that no one else will, that the moment I put it up for critique it will get hacked in two, and I'll learn that what I thought was one of the best pieces of work I've ever done, is still amateurish.

I'd still like to do something with this piece, I think it could make it into a magazine, and I feel compelled to write more short stories about this same character. I guess I've hit a bit of a roadblock...

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