azhure: (me phoenix)

This has been a tough week for forward progress on Never.

Bear in mind that I’m still dealing with the effects of the stupid cold/flu (I’m inclined to say it was a cold, but it lingers like the damn flu) and my brain isn’t working efficiently.  And yeah, the peanut gallery can just shut up right now ;)

By Wednesday I was floundering.  And I realised something – I’d removed a plot thread from the last draft, which meant that I effectively have to rewrite most of the second half of the book completely.  Which means that I was writing without an outline.  And I was just meandering and scenes weren’t making sense and argh the whole book is broken.

I’ve become an outline writer.

I’m as surprised by it as anyone else.  I used to love pantsing, but it’s just not efficient any more.

So yesterday I sat down and hammered out a rough outline for the second half of the book.  Printed it out this morning (all 25 pages!) and hopefully we’ll get decent forward motion again and I can get this draft finished.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:

Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,767

Total words: 105,245

Goal: 100k

Writing:

And then it was the end of the draft.

Decent writing day overall.  I’m still not 100% happy with the last part of the last chapter and may well tinker with it a bit more over the next few days before sending out the last chapters to betas.

There’s definitely still a lot of work to be done on this manuscript – enough to justify another full draft, I think.  I was going to send this full draft out to a few more beta readers, but I may hold off on that until I’ve been able to fix a few things at least.

Amusingly, I woke up this morning with another novel in my head.  Not even Never, which I’ve been planning as the next novel to work on.  This is an old idea and one that I thought had sunk down somewhere below the murk in my mind.  But this morning I woke up with one of the protagonist’s voices in my head.  Maybe, energy permitting, I’ll work on it a little for Nano.  Maybe.

Real life:

Not much apart from pootling around the house getting a few bits and pieces done.  I’m finding it near impossible to get through the day right now without having to spend a decent amount of time lying down.  Which is annoying, since I pretty much can’t do anything while lying down but watch some TV or listen to podcasts and the like.  Even more annoying, I had to lie down this morning after having a shower and breakfast.  But I managed to get some work done afterwards, so I guess it’s time well spent.  It’s still frustrating, though.

It’s been crazy windy all day, along with some decent spurts of rain this morning.  Not really weather to invite me to go out for a walk, but I’ll probably head out in a little bit anyway.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:

Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 1,104

Total words: 104,279

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Not the best day today, hence the low word count.  I was just very tired and lacking in concentration – to the point where my usual first writing session was completely useless.  Managed to get 1k done on my second session, which is better than nothing.

This is making me rethink my tentative maybe-Nano plans.  On a good day, I’m fine reaching the Nano word count, but I can’t guarantee good days right now.  I guess I’ll just take it as it comes.

Real life:

Ran a couple of errands this morning.  Will go for a walk if I can, but am currently stuck waiting for someone to return a phone call.  I know that as soon as I leave the house, they’ll call back.  Frustrating.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:

Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 1,705

Total words: 103,772

Goal: 100k

Writing:

This week’s goal is to get the final chapter of this draft sorted out.  I sketched it out on Friday, and now I have to flesh it out a little, so it’s not completely painful for my beta readers.  As such, I’m not trying for mad word counts every day – I’ll be happy to get 1k, rather than aiming for at least 2k.  Which is a convoluted way of explaining why my word count is below 2k.

Anyway.  This draft of The White Raven will be done this week, and the last chapters sent to beta readers (and the full thing sent to a few betas who haven’t seen it before).  I have more work to do on the manuscript for sure – there’s a handful of plot threads that I need to foreshadow properly and I’ll need to work on cutting the length a little.  That’ll wait for next year, though.

I’m finding myself tempted to do Nanowrimo, too.  It’s an utterly crazy idea – the baby is due on December 5th, so assuming that he comes when he’s supposed to, I’ll be writing almost up to my due date.  But it feels almost as crazy to be planning on doing nothing for a month.  I don’t cope well with doing nothing, unless I’m sick enough to not have a choice in it.  Technically, I could work on a really rough draft (or half of a draft) of Never in the next month.  But then I’d have to abandon it halfway through, likely to not be so much as thinking about it for a few months at the very least.  Argh, decisions.

I know that the sensible thing is to step back from the writing for the next month and let myself rest (as well as catch up on awards reading and some review reading and writing).  I have a tonne of little things that need to be done around the house still as well as lots of recreational books waiting to be read.  But I find it very hard to actually plan not to work.  I didn’t think I’d find it so hard, to be honest.

Real life:

Yet more laundry!  (Sorry, Chris!).  It’s raining a bit today off and on, so I had to pull out all my indoor drying racks to hang it all, which I didn’t appreciate.  I was hoping that the sunny weather was here to stay.  Though it was warm and sticky enough yesterday to make me utterly exhausted, so I should technically be happy that it’s cooler today.

The house has also been cleaned, as per usual for a Monday.   My life is glamourous, really.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:

Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,596

Total words: 103,305

Goal: 100k

Writing:

And that brings me to the end of this draft.

Technically, I need to fiddle with the last few scenes before I’ll send them out to betas, since they’re really rough right now, but I have the basic shape there.  I suspect that the ending is going to need a decent amount of work in the next draft, but for this one, it’s done.

Which means that I can actually take things easy next week and do a lower word count per day if I want to.

It’s going to be really weird when I send out these last few chapters to my betas and can forget about this draft for a while.  Hell, I can stop writing for a little while, which is going to be even weirder.  But after next week, life will get hectic with medical appointments, house repairs and holy crap baby, so I probably won’t even miss it.

Real life:

Yet more laundry.  Just getting used to having to do ten tonnes of it a week I think ;)   Seriously, I’ve been washing lots of new stuff that we’ve been gifted.  Very glad that we have a good quality washing machine right now.  And that it’s warm and sunny and I’ve been able to get everything dry.
Spent more time researching replacement laptops and I’m still undecided.  At the moment I’m torn between going for another Dell (a Vostro, probably), a Lenovo Thinkpad or doing the old switcheroo to a MacBook Pro.  I will admit that Scrivener is the major drawcard for me switching to a Mac, as is the supposed lengthened battery life.  But the price kind of sucks (then again, so does the Thinkpad).  I’ve been very lucky with my current Dell, which has served faithfully up until recently.  Mreh, I don’t know.  One of these days I’ll stop blathering on about it and make a decision.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:

Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,802

Total words: 101,170

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Not a bad day again.  Spent most of my words reworking scenes from yesterday, since they were only drafted out, before moving onto new scenes.  I am so close to the end of this draft that I can taste it.

Real life:

Grcoery shopping this morning, and yet more laundry.  I also went for a walk already this morning, so I find myself with some extra time this afternoon.  Time in which I should do something useful, but will probably just spend more time trying to decide how to rectify my dying laptop situation.  Currently I’m torn between switching to a Macbook or just going for another Dell.  Cannot make up my mind.  Argh.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:

Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 3,949

Total words: 101,342

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Making up for a lost day and a useless day, it seems.

I got a whole chapter sorted out today.  While it’s going to need some work still, I’m pretty happy with it overall.  And I’m looking at maybe one or two more chapters to go until the end of this draft, putting me well within my goal time (hopefully) of getting this done within the next few weeks.

I wish I could tell when I sat down to write what kind of a writing day it would be.  Today I found myself putting off actually getting the butt in the chair, but once I was here, everything just flowed.  Other days I start off enthusiastic, and then nothing happens.  I hate the unpredictability of it all.

Real life:

More laundry, just for something different ;)   Washing a tonne of baby stuff.
Not much else productive today, thanks to feeling generally pretty tired on a physical level.  Will go for a short and very slow walk soon and then settle down to some reading, I think.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:

Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,302

Total words: 98,596

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Getting there slowly.  My concentration wasn’t so great again today, so I spent much of my writing time just sketching out scenes.  It’s frustrating not being able to get into good writing, but it’s better than nothing.  I’m just hoping that I can get a couple of good writing days in over the next few weeks so I can finish this draft.

Real life:

Ran some errands this morning, did laundry.  Tried desperately to stay awake – did a lot of running around yesterday (hence no writing) and I’m feeling it today.
Will go for a walk soon and then settle down for some reading, I think.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:

Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,628

Total words: 97,554

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Not a lot of actual forward motion again today.  Mostly because I spent some time reworking a few scenes.  I have a clear idea of where I’m going with the next few right now, and on another day I might push on and try to get them worked out.  Today I’m teetering on the edge of exhaustion, and I’m forced to give it up for the day.

The men in the basement are earning their keep right now.  I’m able to tie together a few things fairly neatly and I know how everything is going to turn out.  I just need to get there.  And seriously, I miss having energy right now.  It’s taking me forever to do everything.

Real life:

It feels like summer today – so far, the temperature has hit 31C.  And I’m really feeling it – I’m running warm at the moment anyway, and of course I haven’t adjusted to warmer weather yet.  Tomorrow is supposed to be warm as well, and then it’ll be a little cooler again.
I have accomplished laundry, but not much else yet today apart from putting together a review.  Will go for a very sedate walk in a bit, though I really don’t feel like it.  I didn’t sleep well last night, so I’m hoping that I’ll get better sleep tonight.  Thankfully we don’t have a busy weekend this weekend (apart from my baby shower on Sunday) so I should be able to get some decent rest in and be back in the word mines next week.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:
Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,133

Total words: 97,275

Goal: 100k

Writing:

A patchwork day.  Had one good writing session where I rewrote a scene that I sketched out yesterday.  Had lunch, and came back to discover that my brain didn’t want to work any more.  I blame tiredness from getting up earlier than normal this morning.

I did manage to sketch out the start of the next chapter, and will come back to work on that tomorrow.  Creeping ever closer to the end of the book.  It would be really nice if I could get this finished next week.  We’ll see how if my brain and body decide to comply with that or not.

Real life:

Up early this morning in order to not be in my pyjamas when an electrician came to install some lights and a ceiling fan.  Got some bits and pieces done while he was working (no writing then – computers were off a precaution), including some jewellery repairs that I’d been meaning to do and some awards reading.
Will go for a walk very soon, and then try to tackle the slush reading that I didn’t get to yesterday.  I should be working on a review as well, and have made notes, but I think the actual writing of which will wait until tomorrow.
In other news, its actually warm today.  I am glorying in the few days of real spring-like weather we get before summer begins to smother the city.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:
Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,238

Total words: 97,190

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Not a bad day.  I was even following my outline until my protagonist decided that she wanted to do something completely different.  Something that’s left me scratching my head a bit about what’s going to happen next, hence finishing up the writing for the day.  Hopefully by tomorrow I’ll have worked it out somehow.

It looks like this draft may end up being a little longer than 100k.  Which is okay, I guess, though not ideal in terms of submitting.  I don’t think it’ll be much longer, though, and it can always be edited down at a later stage if needed.

Real life:

Grcocery shopping accomplished this morning, which breaks my normal routine.  An electrician is coming tomorrow morning, which means that I can’t do it then.  But we have food now, which is good, and I don’t need to worry about running around at all.  I do need to get up early, though, which sucks a bit.  But is much easier to do now that the days are getting longer.
Another day where I’ve finished up writing somewhat early, so I’ll do some organising around the house and then get into the usual routine of walking and review reading.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:
Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,436

Total words: 95,846

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Not a lot of actual forward motion in terms of total word count today.  I spent some time fixing up some issues I’d been having with scenes that I worked on yesterday, and moved on a little in the plot.  Now I just have to deal with the climax.  The men in the basement need to do a little work on this, so hopefully they’ll be kicking in and earning their keep.

Weirdly, even though I’m dying to get to the end of this draft, I’m also dying now to begin the next round of edits.  At the moment, I anticipate another full draft and then a round of line edits before I’m going to even think of sending this one out into the world.  Not sure as to whether I’ll get to work on this straight away when I return to work in the new year, or if I’ll work on producing a first draft of Never first.  I wish I was the kind of person who could work on multiple projects, but that’s not going to happen, especially with a new baby in the house.  I guess it’ll depend on what my brain is up to then :)

Real life:

Ran a few errands, including picking up some groceries and filling a prescription at the chemist.  Spoke to yet more people about house stuff.  So far, over the next few weeks we’ll have some fairly major work done on the ceilings (which should prove interesting for my schedule – hoping to be mostly done with this draft before then) and someone coming in to quote on replacing blinds.  I swear, at times it feels like we’ve replaced half of this house.  But we knew that this work was going to need to be done when we bought the place.  And the house is awesome enough to justify it.  Thankfully, the ceiling work *should* be the last major work that needs to be done.  Everything else lined up is cosmetic.
I’ve finished writing earlyish today, and will go for a walk shortly.  I have a bunch of stuff that needs to be done around the house – none of it particularly urgent, but it would be nice to have it done.  I might make a start on some of it.  And then walk, and then get stuck into review work and slush reading.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:
Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,189

Total words: 95,599

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Not a bad day today.  Made better by the realisation of how close I am to the end of the draft.  I have a couple of big scenes to write, and then some stuff to wrap everything up.  It looks like I’ll end up somewhere around the 100k mark, which makes me happy.  Ideally, I’d like to get the next draft under 100k.  We’ll see how it goes, though, since I am very much the kind of writer to tends to add stuff in rather than take it out when rewriting.

So right now I’m looking well on target to getting this draft finished in the next couple of weeks, the brain being compliant with this plan.  I’m sure that the last few chapters are going to need a tonne of work when I’m done, but that’s the way things go.

Real life:

Cleaned the house, did laundry.

Am currently waiting on a delivery that will hopefully get here today (baby furniture!).  Have also been doing some chasing up of prices of house stuff and running around via the phone.   Overall, a pretty productive day, which is always good for a Monday.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:

Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,563

Total words: 94,059

Goal: 100k

Writing:

And after a bad start to the week, I’ve had a couple of good writing days.  I can handle that – at least a few good days will bring me closer to the end of this draft.

This should technically be the easy part of writing.  I have the end all outlined, and it should be a matter of just following that outline (more or less) and getting it done.  You can all laugh now ;)

I’m rapidly coming to the conclusion that I work better when I’m editing, as opposed to writing a first draft.  Right now, I’m essentially writing a first draft of this ending, and it’s coming like pulled teeth.  And as for my constant despairing over not being an outline writer, I think I’m proving something to myself here.  It doesn’t make it easier for me, with my own personal creative process.  I like discovering my hidden world piece by piece, finding my way through the darkness by touch alone.

Either way, this manuscript is definitely going to go through another major draft before I can even think of sending it off to agents or publishers.  And I’m just going to have to accept that I’m a slowish writer (and likely to get slower).  Constantly railing against the process that works for me doesn’t get me anywhere but frustrated.

Real life:

Laundry!  It’s the excitement of my life, and I should probably not even note that I’ve done it.  Except that, yanno, otherwise it looks like I don’t do anything but write and sit on the couch eating bon-bons all day ;)
I will likely go for a short walk and listen to some podcasts soon.  I am currently listening to Mur Lafferty’s I Should Be Writing podcasts from the beginning.  Excellent accompaniment for a very slow walk, I’ve found.  If you don’t listen to ISBW, then you should.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:
Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,360

Total words: 92,206

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Somewhere overnight I had an a-ha moment as to why I’m getting stuck at the end of this book.  Basically, I’d written myself into a corner and I had to figure out how to work my way out of it.  I think I may have found a way (or a way that works for this draft, anyway) and hopefully I can move on and get this draft finished.

Now my brain just needs to stop throwing up ideas for other major changes I could make to the book.  Gah, brain, give it a rest, okay?  I really appreciate you men in the basement working hard, but can you work on this version of the book at least?

Real life:

Walk already accomplished and grocery shopping done for the week.  Both of which took far more effort than they should have.  Well, in my mental version of “should have”, which doesn’t really include the fact that I’m a few days shy of being eight months pregnant.
For someone who considers herself to be a bit lazy, I’ve realised how much I do depend on being able to do physical activity.  I’m looking forward to being able to walk and do stuff without feeling like I’m made of stone.
I also worked on a review and got it posted up at Horrorscope.  I’m slowly catching up on all of the review and award reading I have stacked up, which makes me happy.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:
Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,116

Total words: 91,962

Goal: 100k

Writing:

I feel like I’m hitting a wall.  I’m getting more and more exhausted every day and it’s getting difficult to concentrate on writing.

I’ve been banging my head against these last few chapters and don’t really feel like I’m getting anywhere.  I figured out one major change that I need to make (and managed to stop myself from going back and editing right now to make said change) but these last chapters just feel…flat.  I really want to take the time to make them into something decent, but I worry that I’m reaching my limit for creative work.

I had intended on trying to write for at least the next month (and I will continue to try to do so), but I think I’m really going to have to start scaling back.  Hopefully everything will fall into place and I’ll be able to get some semblance of these last chapters put together.  I apologise in advance to my beta readers, for they are likely to be a mess.

Real life:

Lots of laundry and not much else.
Will go for a short walk soon and try to work on some reviews.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:
Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 1,940

Total words: 91,100

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Concentration is still all over the place today.  I did manage to get some scenes sketched out – and then I realised that I need to change something in the story.  This change is going to necessitate some serious work, since I need to go back and add in a minor character.  My brain just kind of turned off at the thought of that, hence the lower word count today.

This is where I envy outline writers.  If I outlined, then maybe I would have known this already.  Though, given the way my brain works when I’m writing, possibly not.

Real life:

Not much.  Yet another contractor to see today, which did interrupt my flow this afternoon.  I seem to be having really good luck with contractors lately – they’ve all been really nice people.  Makes it much easier to have them around the house.
Spent a good chunk of this morning feeling under the weather – went to bed really sore and tired last night and woke in much the same state.  Will go for a gentle walk soon to see if it helps with the sore part, and hope that I sleep better tonight.
The last few days I’ve had a bad case of the don’t wannas in general.  I can’t seem to settle to do anything much at all, which is driving me a bit crazy.  I can handle the reluctance to write (or do housework or whatever) – I just hate it when I can’t/won’t settle to do anything at all.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:
Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,216

Total words: 91,703

Goal: 100k

Writing:

A strange day.  I found it really difficult to concentrate today in general (which is always a sign, to me, that something is going wrong somewhere with the book).

I messed around on the new chapter for a bit, trying to at least sketch out a few scenes.  It wasn’t working.  So I sat down and realised that I’d gone wrong a few scenes back.  It seems to happen this way for me – if I’m stuck on a particular scene, chances are I’ve gone wrong a ways back.  I know what I need to fix, but right now, I don’t quite know how to fix it.  So I’m stepping away from the writing for the day, and hope the men in the basement will get to work.

Realistically, I probably only have a few chapters to go until the end of this draft (according to my sketchy outline, anyway) so I could probably slow the pace a little now.  I’m dying to reach the end, though, so I probably won’t slow down much.

Real life:

Cleaned the house, did laundry.  Got perhaps too happy about the fact that it’s sunny and I’ll actually get laundry dry today.
Also spoke to yet another contractor about getting stuff done around the house.  For all that I have a break in medical appointments for the next few weeks, my time’s filling up with getting people out to do quotes and work on the house instead.  Right now, I kind of wish I had an eeePC so I could be more mobile with my work to avoid contractors while they’re here.  My Dell works, but it’s really no longer mobile, being reliant upon an external keyboard and mouse.  Oh well, I’ll just have to deal.  It’ll be getting replaced eventually.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:
Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,410

Total words: 89,968

Goal: 100k

Writing:

A surpringly good day, given that I’m utterly exhausted.  I mostly worked on the scenes that I’d sketched out yesterday, which involved fleshing them out properly.  Also had a couple of minor epiphanies about the plot, and little things that I need to go back and add in on the next round of edits.

This has, unfortunately, had the side effect of making me want to go back and edit this right now.  Which isn’t going to happen.  I still plan on getting this draft done and leaving it to sit until I have the mental energy and time to come back and work on it again.  The next draft should, in theory, be faster, since I’m mostly going to go through and add in a few minor bits and work on fleshing out some of the writing itself.  I’m fairly happy with the general shape of the plot, and so it should stay intact from here on in.  Unless some of my betas find massive plot holes, which could happen.

Real life:

Laundry accomplished and is on the line drying (hooray for spring finally being here!).  I’ve also been taking breaks to get some bits and pieces done around the house.  I believe this may be called nesting ;)
I’m going to go for a walk in a bit, and then maybe do some more bits and pieces around the house.  I am tired of the fact that I’ve left tonnes of stuff half done (since we moved in almost two years ago, in some cases) and I want some order around here.  Okay, I have officially become Crazy Pregnant Woman.  Good thing there’s only nine weeks to go ;)

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

azhure: (Default)
Today’s progress:
Project: White Raven draft two

New words: 2,324

Total words: 89,178

Goal: 100k

Writing:

Not a bad day – two writing sessions, the first of which was much better than the second.  The last scene I worked on wasn’t much more than sketched out, which gives me somewhere to start tomorrow.

The end is close.  I need to keep telling myself this.  My focus is really starting to go, and I need to know that I’ll be able to take a break soon.

Real life:

Grocery shopping this morning as well as a short walk, both of which totally exhausted me.  Stamina, I do not has it any more.  And this isn’t going to improve any time soon.  Oh well, it’s only temporary.

Also dealt with a contractor who came out to quote on fixing our sagging ceiling.  Home ownership bites sometimes, especially when you buy a house that needs renovations.  I can’t wait until we’ve fixed all of this stuff up, though.  Then I can finally start doing some of the other cosmetic stuff to the house that we’ve been putting off.

Mirrored from Stephanie Gunn.

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sister awakened

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