Oct 16, 2017

NaNo No No

As we hit the middle of October, I’m over here looking askance at NaNoWriMo.

I enjoy participating in the yearly ritual, but the book I’ve been planning to NaNo-up all year has been usurped in my schedule and while my req w/c for the new November project will more than adequately fulfill NaNo’s requirements…. The unfulfilled expectation chafes.

So I probably won’t do the thing.

Through September my average w/c per month has been just over 75k. I’ve never done NaNo as a challenge to get bulk words down. It’s only ever been about focus for me. And that’s part of the problem this year.

I’ll only need to write 2,370-words on average for the 30 days of November to finish my scheduled project. That, when I hold myself to strict deadlines… isn’t an issue. So, I’ve considered saying “screw it” and trying to pop in that 1,667-words for a NaNo run too… but my worry lies with what that will do to my focus.

The projects are different… but not different enough. The last thing I want to do is bleed them together. My first inclination is to throw caution and my pages to the wind and go for it. But that’s like carrying a birthday cake and its back-up, all at once. If you trip, you’ve ruined everything. One by one, you’ve still got the potential for salvage.

But I have 14 days to figure that out… right?

Oct 4, 2017

IWSG October

This post has been a part of the monthly IWSG blog-hop. Bounce over there, check it out and sign up if you’re ready to share you neuroses with the world.
Have you ever slipped any of your personal information into your characters, either by accident or on purpose?

I think we always put a little of ourselves into our characters, both main and secondary. It’s difficult not to. All narratives are drawn from personal experience (whether it’s something we’ve done, witnessed, or has been pieced together from a myriad of sources.)

Often, when creating characters, I try to evaluate first what I would do in the given situation, and then weigh that against what the character would do. Understanding why they’d do something differently than you would is important to keeping them true to themselves throughout the whole story. Especially important when you think of an awesome way to handle something… but it’s an action that character would never take (unless you can find a way to make them go against their predetermined nature.)

There is one book, currently in a weird draft purgatory, where its quick rough draft (a sprint-written document that’s about 50% of the end-goal word count) gave one of the main characters a backstory that was very nearly identical to part of my own past. In the process of notating what needed to change before I hunker down and write the actual draft, I’ve removed or changed that backstory in a way that it is only vaguely similar to what I experienced… because her story has a completely different “ending” than mine did.

Oct 2, 2017

September Numbers 2017

Another month down, another (low) word count in the books.

Words: 34,245-words in 17 days
(Avg 2,014-words/day)
9 projects + Admin (14%)

September came in about 9k short of January, previously my lowest recorded w/c for the year. There were many distractions, several days were I was not at a desk, and much editing was done, so I’m not upset by that number. It’s still above the totals for september in both 2015 and 2016, and still above the average for the whole of 2015. Woo.

This month also came with the realization I’ll need to alter my schedule for the end of the year to stay on top of things, on target for finishing those major tasks that just can’t wait, and still managing to stay sane.
We’re approaching the end of the year and that one month where I have zero goals (Looking at you, December). The holidays come with enough stress w/o me glaring at a spreadsheet with too low of numbers. Add to that the fact we’ve got a big trip planned around Christmas and it’s just better if I keep the month labeled as “open.” I love travel and I’m big on planning, so I’m trying to keep from being too giddy about it.