Keepers Week 3

Homer typing

I am almost three weeks into writing the novel and all is well. I set a goal of 1,000 words a day and have made that goal everyday (including one with a headache). I should be at 22,000 words tomorrow (that is the actual 3 week mark) but I will probably be somewhere around 24,000 words, so slightly ahead. Most of the writing has been done after everyone goes to bed but I have slipped in some words before school and at breaks.

I haven’t had a day yet where I struggled to reach the 1,000 word mark. It seems to be a nice neutral number for me. I have thought about raising it but have decided that for now I will keep it where it is comfortable (although during breaks I might try to do a little more). At a 1,000 words a day I will be done with the first draft in about 68 more days based on a 90,000 word goal for the novel.

I think the book is probably going to come in at more than 90,000 words but I can’t tell for sure yet. It is also possible I will finish a little early if I write more than a 1,000 words a day during breaks (I have a few breaks coming up). While the writing is still coming easy I have found that I am still having the problem of how to squeeze in other projects. There really isn’t enough time in the day. When the writing is coming easy, like it is now, I don’t want to stop working on the novel. I think what I might do is just try to carve out an hour a night for writing other things. I am hoping when I let up a little on the blog writing that will also give me some more time.

Speaking of writing coming easy. This is my first adult novel and was expecting to have a few more hang ups early. What I am finding is that writing young adult novels put a much larger burden on me when it came to language. I was always thinking about words. Is this word appropriate? Will a kid know what this word means? Is there a better word to describe this? I haven’t worried about that at all in writing the adult novel. It has been mostly trying to find a distinct voice for my characters and juggling the different points of view I am writing from.

I have one main story that is broken up into three different story lines which I plan to bring together at the end. This has been the most enjoyable part of the writing. Laying the groundwork for the stories to come together. Putting little clues in each part. Letting the tendrils of the big mystery snake around in the story and pull it together. It has made me keep a lot of notes. Things I want to add, things I need to fix, and characters I need to connect the dots on.

I am also a little amused by the fact that my biggest challenge in this story was what the hell I was going to do with common English things that you wouldn’t necessarily find in my fantasy world. Like how I am going to talk about the passage of time. Do I use the word minutes? How about days? I really didn’t want to invent a whole new language here. It isn’t that kind of book. For now I decided on using minutes and days but changing the names of months. I think I will just keep it that simple and see how it reads.

The one thing I know for sure is this book is going to get done. I have no fears in that department. All the struggle of the previous book is gone. I am not forcing the work or the story. I am loving the plot and characters and really can’t wait until I reach the finish line and type the end. In the meantime I will start to print pages and Sheri gets to begin her first read through. The finish line should be sometime around April 24th (unless it goes long). Then I will do my first edit and begin to search for readers and then onto the next one. It will be just like doing the dishes. There will always be new stories to tell.

About csdaley

C.S. Daley was born in California but has spent most of his life in his imagination. His first short story written in third grade, the now classic "Close Encounters of the Turd Kind," was sold to his next door neighbor for a quarter. The neighbor promptly demanded a refund. An unhealthy obsession with the writings of Neil Gaiman, Christopher Moore, and Terry Pratchett have left his mind warped and broken. He spends most of his evening swilling down coffee while tapping at a keyboard under the watchful eyes of his kittens. They are there to make sure he doesn't snap. He likes to write fantasy for adults and teens.

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