Tuesday, October 18, 2005

How the Writing's Going

Getting Time to Write

Today Paul had a mandatory meeting at the unemployment office. I had him drop me, a printout of chapter 2, and my journal at one of the local coffee shops. I got words. A little over 4 pages worth. I'll be cutting a whole section of the chapter and replacing it with these much better words. Yay, me!!

So, it looks like I have another time when I can get writing done--anytime I can get away from my mom's house and work elsewhere. It would be easier if I had a notebook computer so I can have my files handy. Paul said when he finds work, I can buy one, if we're not out of money, or save for one if we're starting from scratch. Yay, Paul! He has another meeting on Friday afternoon and I'm planning another writing session then. I hope to be able to get out at least one more time between now and then.

My attempt to rediscover my night owl tendencies is going slow. It takes time to change your internal clock, so I'm being patient with myself about that. It's especially hard because I've been too busy to take a nap, so I start to fall asleep by ten pm. Maybe I'll try staying awake ten minutes longer a night, adding ten minutes every week or so. It seems like it would be easier to get used to a change like that gradually. But Daylight Savings Time is coming to an end. I can use that time change to my advantage by going to bed the same time I do now, but the clock will say eleven and I'll have an extra hour to write.

Sharing My Progress

Just in case anyone is paying attention to the progress of my WIP, I wanted to explain about my progress bar. I put the progress bar on the blog because it stares at me. It makes me think about the story and what words I want recorded on it. And it nudges me to work on the story, not the blog. But I don't change it very often. There are two reasons for that.

One reason is that I do some editing and revising as I go. Sometimes that results in a lower word count than when I started. I just leave it the same when that happens because I know I'll be making up the difference as I get more of the draft written. I tend to write lean and add.

The other reason is that I do most of my draft writing by hand. Until I type it into the computer and look at the count in Word, I have no idea how many words to add. I handwrite about 250 words per page, if the draft is clean. But usually my drafts are messy. Lots of crossed out words. Circles with numbers in them to indicate that the passage with that number goes in that spot, not in the spot where I originally wrote it. Arrows indicating I should reverse two paragraphs. That mess alters the word count. I learned that I have to type in my handwritten draft before I write the next section. That's when I check the word count and update the progress bar if it's bigger.

And How It's Going

At the moment, chapter one is as good as it's going to get until the whole book's done. Chapter two is much closer to being done. I'm going to have to revise part of the end of the chapter because changes have repercussions. One of the changes I made makes it impossible for something I wrote earlier to happen the way I wrote it. It's not a major change, though. Chapter three is barely started. I may need a session with Inspiration before I can finish it, just to make sure I don't leave out important details.

And that's how the writing's going today.