Very Close

I set the target as 75k words, and the end date as 31/10/19. Just about there for the word count, but still not finished with the story. Still, it’s a bit of the pressure off for the numbers. 
I can see the end of the main part of the story and I’m almost there, just the final rescue left and then a sort of last look at our hero to see how he’s fared.  I fancy he’ll have some sort of future call on his services but I’m not sure yet if I’ll write about it.
The aim is to clear the decks for November en try and produce 50k words then at least. NaNoWriMo calls

An Interlude

We were out last night, at Kinky Boots in Blackpool. Super show, really enjoyed the performance and had a great night. We were with a group of friends and everybody was enthusiastic about how good the show was. I can heartily recommend it to anybody for  good night out. It was interesting to see how closely the story arc matched the template laid out in the book, Save the Cat Writes a Novel. I actually think I’m beginning to understand the connection now.

Consequently, was late in bed last night and so slept later this morning. So no early morning writing today.

The good news is that I’ve still managed to get 2200 words done since breakfast, and that’s the target reached and passed for today.

The bad news is that our hero is still trapped and rescue is still hours away. I only hope he can survive. At least the cavalry are a bit better informed than they were, even though they have no idea how to respond to the information they’ve been given.

Now that would be a Bad Idea

So, another 2800 words today and the story is starting to look like it might reach some sort of conclusion. Our hero remains trapped, he and his men have no way out and they’ve also ended up with a lot more responsibility than they anticipated.

One of the options he has might well result in the mother of all explosions, if he’s not careful.

Can they be rescued anyway, before they are overwhelmed and if so, will they all get out in one piece?

The target for the whole thing is about 75k words and we’re now at 58k. It really needs to be done and dusted well before the end of the month and that looks pretty likely. Early mornings seem to be the way forward.

Here come the bad guys

Another 2.5k words so far today. Things are maybe getting closer to a conclusion. Now trapped in the quarry and probably running low on ammunition what is our hero going to do? He’s already lost one of his men and looks likely to lose some more, if not all of them.

The good news is he’s maybe saved somebody’s life, a small percentage of those at risk. Will it be enough? Can he save some more? Can he save his own? Stay tuned to see the outcome of this thrilling tale. </advert> 😉

In the meantime, early morning writing seems to be working out okay. I’m managing about 500 words an hour, and with near enough 55k words out of a target 75k, I should be able to get the first draft done before the end of October to make way for the new story in November.

If I can manage it, I could actually follow Stephen King’s advice and put the draft of this month’s novel away for a full month before starting to edit it in a second draft. Who knows?

Come into my Parlour…

Managed another 2300 words this morning. the target date is actually starting to look quite achievable. And for once I can see where the story is going.

So our hero thinks everything is hunky-dory, does he? Well, he probably doesn’t, but he’s living in hope. He obviously isn’t aware of the power of wireless connectivity and remote sensing devices, (it is the late 19th century after all).

I suspect he’s going to be mightily surprised when the results of his ignorance are pointed out to him, (by the bad guys).

At least we’ve been able to get rid of his idiot boss and install someone who has more idea of what’s what. I just hope he can do something in the time left. Speaking of which, we’ve never actually set any deadlines, have we. Not for our hero at least. My own deadline is the end of October, so I can clear the decks for NaNoWriMo, which starts on 1st November.

Insecure Writers Support Group

The question for this month is:

”It’s been said that the benefits of becoming a writer who does not read is that all your ideas are new and original. Everything you do is an extension of yourself, instead of a mixture of you and another author. On the other hand, how can you expect other people to want your writing, if you don’t enjoy reading? What are your thoughts?”

Not sure I would agree with that. No matter if you read something or experience it directly you are always an amalgam of others. Their thoughts and experiences bleed into your consciousness by talking to you or merely interacting with you in everyday life.

So, to that extent nothing you write about is entirely original.  Merely seeing someone walk down the street and describing it is affected by their life story, are they ill or fit, young or old, determined or cautious? And the reason they are like that is a direct result of their life experiences.

if you see them or read about them, your writing will be affected by their life.

Fun and Games?

Another 1800 words before breakfast today and things are starting to warm up, in the snow. Our heroine and tutor have started to stir things up at police HQ, while our hero has arrived at his quarry, thanks to what I am thinking of as a ‘half-rescue’ (more on that later).

Not touched the anti-hero today, he had enough attention yesterday and the day before so he can wait a while.

One of the many great advantages of using Scrivener to write this sort of story is the ease with which you can hop from one part of the story to another and then back again.

I’ve laid the story out in chapters and each chapter contains several separate scenes, these can be edited in any order and even moved around to put them into a final order whenever you want.

Early Mornings

I’m not sure how long it will last, but I’ve been waking rather early lately, and rather than waste the mornings, getting stuck into the novel.  I can manage about 1200 words between 5 and 7 am. it’s nice to get the daily figure out of the way before the day really starts.

I currently try and do a quick(ish) edit of the previous day’s output before starting on new writing, so those two hours before 7 am feel pretty productive.

Currently, our hero lies buried in a snowdrift, awaiting rescue. I hope somebody finds him before he suffers any irreparable harm, somehow I suspect they will.

In the meantime, back at the ranch, the anti-hero has just made a complete ass of himself during an interview with a reporter and compounded his error by holding the interview in front of a dozen local residents who are now going to spread the word PANIC in large letters all over town.

Getting Colder and Colder

Unwelcome Visitors is coming along nicely now. I currently need to get through about 1100 words a day to reach the end before 31st October, which should firstly clear the decks for NaNoWriMo beginning on 1st November and secondly should act as a period of practice for November itself.

Our hero Inspector Carter seems to have got himself in a spot of bother. He’s alone out on the moors in one of the coldest winters in memory and has to reach shelter before nightfall if he is to have any chance of surviving.

His boss has suspended him from duty but he’s taken a rifle from the armoury and is determined to get to the bottom of the missing people. the same boss has obtained an arrest warrant for Carter and set his men in pursuit.

We’re over half way through and the number of missing people has now reached over fifty. How many more? When will the panic set in? and how will Carter resolve the situation?

Recommended Read

Just finishing Save the Cat Writes a Novel ‘ The Last Book on Novel Writing You’ll Ever Need.

I don’t normally do reviews, but this book is certainly worthy of some attention.  A couple of years ago I signed up for and started attending a writing course at a local college. What I had hoped to get was some specific instruction on structure, pacing, characterisation and the like.  But while the course was pleasant enough, I couldn’t see any of what I really needed and dropped out.

I feel that I should have read this book three years ago. It explains exactly what I, and possibly most other wannabe writers should know and do. 

There is a detailed breakdown into fifteen milestones, (she calls them ‘Beats’, I think in reference to the beat in music), each is explained,  with reference to well-known books and one is further sub-divided into five mini-beats.

She also lists ten genres which are not the traditional type of genre such as mystery, romance, sci-fi, etc. but which are much more wide-ranging and which make a lot of sense, such as Whydunit, Rites of Passage, Dude with a Problem, etc. Three points are required in each of these genres and each genre is then explored with a specific novel that is exploded using the beats. A ‘Beat-Sheet’ is given so that you can see how other authors, from JK Rowling, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone to  Khaled Hosseini, The Kite Runner, have created their masterpieces and match her template.

Jessica Brody, the author, writes in terms that I can understand, with multiple relevant examples, and walks the reader through the whole process of planning and creating a novel. 

Highly recommended.