Saturday, 26 April 2014

#WIPMarathon Report #3

Last report wordcount and chapter count/scene count: I'd just finished my WIP (first draft) and written a revision plan for Indestructible, my YA post-apocalyptic fantasy.

Current report WC + CC/SC:
 This month, I've been writing my sequel for Camp NaNoWriMo - I'm at the halfway mark! I've also been working on more revisions on Indestructible based on CP feedback.

WIP Issues this month: Argh, confidence issues. It's difficult to say what exactly triggered it, but as I'm in the awkward position of being a published author but still languishing in the query trenches, both things have really been chipping away at my confidence. Every other day seems to bring a new disappointment, knockback, or badly-timed email, and the long game of waiting, waiting, waiting... Obviously, I'm in this for the long haul. But sometimes, a bit of good news would be nice!

Four things I learned this month in writing:
  •  Sometimes, changing your mind about what project to work on can be a good thing! I was originally going to write a different book as I said last month, but I decided I was more in the mood to write this one. And it was definitely the right move. It's been a hard month, so coming back to characters I love has been such a relief!
  • Every book I write is different, but with each, I become more confident in my writing process. It changes slightly with each book, but I'm accepting that I need to have a fairly detailed outline before I start a draft - no exceptions. The more I leave to chance, the more rewriting I have to do later on when the story inevitably nose-dives off a cliff. I'm still putting off the moment when I have to get out the MG draft I wrote in October-December, where I completely lost control of the story and will probably have to do a major revision!
  • In some ways, sequels are easier than the first book in a series. I know my characters well enough that I don't spend ages racking my brain trying to figure out what decision they'll make, and events seem to flow naturally without the initial struggling phase I always have when I'm trying to get into a character's head! 
  • With that being said, characters can still surprise you, even if you outline. I'm writing a sequel which has been outlined since before I wrote the first book - and yet, not four chapters in, I had a character make a decision that completely took me by surprise! And it just happened again. Over the course of a long story, the characters really do start to take control! It's almost like they're thinking for themselves.
What distracted me this month when writing: In addition to the self-doubt sucking me under, I was also struck down by the Plague. I somehow got two viruses at once, which was oh-so-much fun... I actually managed to keep writing, but my productivity took a nosedive. No surprises there. But I also booked a holiday with a friend in a week's time, so I'm looking forward to a whole week away from emails!

Goal for next month: Ideally, I'd like to finish this draft! But I'm away this weekend, and on the 3rd I'm going on holiday to Majorca (woo! :D), so I'm not sure if I'll be able to pull it off. This month has really knocked it out of me! If not, I'm hoping by mid-June I'll be done with the first draft of this, and also final edits on Indestructible.

Last 200 words: Um...it's a sequel. I don't want any spoilers. :P

7 comments:

  1. I feel you. I've also been struggling with self-doubt this month. I think it's something every author regardless of where they are in the career will suffer from at least once a WIP.

    Hope you enjoy your time away from the Internet and that May is an awesome writing month for you!

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  2. "I'm writing a sequel which has been outlined since before I wrote the first book - and yet, not four chapters in, I had a character make a decision that completely took me by surprise!"

    I love when that happens.

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  3. I can so relate to the confidence issues. I tend to draft really fast, but I've been dragging my feet because I just can't stand to go into the query trenches again. Yeah, totally, some good news really would be nice!

    I hope I get to a sequel one day. It does seem like at least some aspects would be a little easier to write.

    Have fun in Majorca!!

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  4. Great work! :D

    I'm sorry to hear writing has been getting you down lately. I'm back in the trenches with you and feeling the sadness with every rejection. ^^; But we have to keep moving on!

    I LOVE when characters take on a life of their own! They almost always know themselves better than I do!

    Hope you're feeling better! Have a nice trip!

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  5. I can't not outline before writing a book. I'd just end up having an incurable writer's block in the middle, so I admire writers who are confident with pantsing their way through!

    I love Indestructible as a title I think you should keep it. ;)

    Good for you traveling (also, can't wait to see pictures of Spain)! Querying can be such a depressing experience, but crossing fingers for you that your inbox would sing a happy song someday!

    Happy writing and traveling next month!

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  6. 'Argh, confidence issues. It's difficult to say what exactly triggered it, but as I'm in the awkward position of being a published author but still languishing in the query trenches, both things have really been chipping away at my confidence.'

    Well, for what it's worth. You have a vey strong and professional online presence. That can only be good.

    J

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  7. Congrats on completing the first draft of your WIP! So sorry about the confidence issues, though. I can relate to that far too well!

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