Saturday, 30 August 2014

#WIPMarathon Update #7

Last report wordcount and chapter count/scene count: I'd finished my pre-edits on Darkworld 4 and 5, plus I was at 45K of my draft.

Current report WC + CC/SC:
 I finished my draft at 75K! Including one crazy 6K-in-a-day marathon! :D

I've also done a ton of planning, research and outlining for Shiny New Series, and started writing the first book! I'm at around 30K so far. ^_^ It's been a crazy few weeks!

WIP Issues this month: 
Getting distracted by Shiny New Series, which took over my mind and demanded to be written. The problem? I knew it was a complex idea, with multiple alternative universes and layers of plots and magicky stuff. But I couldn't let it go, so I decided to let myself research whenever I had free time after meeting my daily writing goals and finishing work.  I have to finish every draft I start (and the WIP wasn't going badly... it was just less appealing than the new shiny, which is always the way!) so I made myself juggle both at once until I'd finished my draft. It was tricky, but I'm glad I did it - I hate leaving projects unfinished!

Four things I learned this month in writing:

  • If I really, really love an idea, then it doesn't matter how much work I'll have to put in or how many other things I have to do - I'll find a way to make it happen. I forgot how amazing it is when a story creeps up on you and takes over your mind so you HAVE to work on it, regardless of whatever else is going on! Like when my flash drive broke when I was on the way to Italy...and the only other copy of the series plan for my novel (not to mention 23,000 words of the manuscript!) was at home. But it didn't kill my desire to write, and I actually wrote 14K in 4 days, including 7000 words of a companion novella. (And the file survived! Hallelujah!) 
  • To maintain sanity, I work on plotting in small stages. As I've been wrestling with a super-complex series idea for the last month, I've been trying to focus on the details rather than the whole project at once to avoid becoming overwhelmed. Also, keeping all the information in one Scrivener document = a good plan! I have all the worldbuilding info, character profiles, and files just for cool ideas that occur to me as I go along. BUT I did get quite a dramatic reminder to back up my files in more than one place. o.O
  • I've been trying out new techniques to get more words down per day without sacrificing quality. For instance, running through a scene in my head beforehand and scribbling in a notebook, writing bits and pieces of it down, then putting it all together. It takes a bit longer, but it ultimately has a smoother result! Right now, I'm actually writing several chapters at once, in fragments, and when I run into an issue with one, I move onto another. This is partly because I'm alternating between two 1st person POV's, so two stories are happening at the same time.
  • Speaking of the dual 1st person POV, it's also the first time I've done that - and the first time I've written from the perspectives of two characters who couldn't be more different from me! It's challenging, but I never expected it to be so much fun!
What distracted me this month when writing: 

My book re-releasing!

Also, querying. o.O And various mini-breaks and fun trips. :) Spending time with the boyfriend and the family. ^^

Goal for next month: Carry on with this draft! :D I'm trying to stick with one series rather than hopping around, and this particular one is...demanding. Obviously, I'll have to take breaks for Darkworld edits and if anything happens with the book I'm querying, but for now, I'll focus on this new series! :)

Last 200 words: *deep breath* This is a tad nerve-wracking, but I'll share the opening to Shiny New Series Book 1! (Bear in mind the first-draftiness of it!)

Pulling my hood to hide my face, I slipped from the fog-shrouded London street into a narrow alleyway between two broken-down buildings. No one saw me.
I rubbed my arms, feeling the chill from the alley wall penetrate the thin fabric of my coat. Several feet in, the brick gave way to another substance which wasn’t obvious at first glance. This area was so off-radar, no one would ever come looking for trouble here - not of the magic variety, anyway. But my fingers found the familiar cracks between brick and metal, and a gentle push was all I needed. Before my eyes, the fake part of the wall slid away, revealing cold metal in an arched shape.
Whoever had first found the Passage here, I didn’t know. Even Nell didn’t. They couldn’t be created - they just existed, anomalies in nature.
The metal wall was icy to the touch and vibrated under my fingers. It wasn’t a door, exactly, though it functioned like a sliding panel, moving back to reveal a dark corridor.
I stepped over the threshold.
The Passages were always freezing, no matter the time of day - there was no sun here, and it grew colder the further in you went. Officially, only the first corridor was accessible, but there was nothing official about this. And I knew all the secrets of the Passages. I could walk them blindfolded, even into the dark places the Alliance didn’t want anyone on Earth to know about.


  1. Wow! You are on a roll! Proof that we can get those words down no matter how busy we get in life. That's so true that we'll do whatever we can to work on a project that's gripping us hard around the brains. :) I haven't done dual first person in so long, but I remember it being an interesting challenge!

    I hope querying is going well! ^_^

    This shiny new series of yours sounds very, very interesting! I'm excited for you! And thrilled at how much you've accomplished this month. It's always so inspiring to read your updates. Makes me want to kick my own butt a little harder. ^_^

    Keep up the awesome, awesome drive!

  2. Holy cow that's a lot of writing. More than 60k in one month!! 0.o I don't know how you do it and with travel in between. Super impressed and a tad envious. Congrats on finishing the draft and getting so far with the shiny new idea. Reading the excerpt made me think of the Animatrix for some reason, which is very cool.

    I'm also amazed by your ability to hop between chapters while writing. I've never tried that - not sure my brain would cope - but it's making me think it might be good to try when I get stuck in a chapter so that instead of giving up, I move on to something else. Great idea - thanks!

    May the words continue to flow in September :)

  3. WHOA! You got a LOT done this month! Way to go :) And I love the new cover of Darkness Watching. Good luck on the new WIP. It sounds fantastic!

  4. Congrats on the epic word count and the book re-release! :) I'm intrigued by the writing sample so far.

    Writing multiple POVs is fun, isn't it? I got nervous I couldn't pull it off, and maybe in some people's opinions, I couldn't,, but it was a fun exercise to at least try!

  5. Wow, it really has been a crazy month for you (crazy-good!). Congratulations on the words and the re-release!

    As always your progress astounds me. Don't mind me while I come back to this post every time I'm procrastinating next month. ;-)

    Love the opening for the new WIP, too. Best of luck with it!

    -Amanda Shayne

    I love the new techniques you're trying--it made me realize that every now and then I do a bit of that (running through the scene and jotting stuff down before pulling it all together) and it's those chapters that I love the most. I need to do it more often!

  6. Congratulations on finishing the draft! 6000 words in a day sounds insane!

    Shiny new series sounds cool, especially the multiverse part. Multiverses are really cool, but they must involve a ton of planning.

  7. Your productivity continues to amaze me. You need to find a way to bottle it and sell it to the rest of us! ;)