This was a strange week for my writing.
As I was writing Space Dutchman, I bumped into the climax. At which point, I knew I was going to have to do a full cycle over the entire story before I could finish the climax.
But with the entire story being cycled through, I couldn’t do that in conjunction with a word count goal. Some writers put too much it and have to pare back. Others put too little in and have to add. I do both at the same time (yeah, got to be different).
Some examples of what’s happening in my cycle:
- A character is coming out of the bulk of the book. He’s still there; he’s just not on the mission. I discovered he kept self-editing, so that was a sign he needed to come out.
- An early discussion with two characters created a big problem in the story later (as in, “Then why can’t anyone rescue them if this an option?” Whoops!)
- Fixing the above caused about half a page that followed to come out because it no longer fit.
Time Management for Writers is in the same place. Cycling on non-fiction tends to be a very messy process for me, more than for fiction. I find places where it was in my head but I didn’t get it down clearly on paper (intermediate packets!).
That’s odd for me, having two books coming to a close at about the same time.
But this week, I also went to Nostalgia Con. That’s a movie and TV con where they bring in older actors. Robert Fuller from Emergency was one of the guests, and I wanted to meet him. He’s 89, so realistically, this might be my only opportunity.
He was very nice and enjoyed all the attention from the fans (not always true for all actors).
Saturday (Sept 10)
Time Management for Fiction Writers
Space Dutchman: 834;
This session was a slog. The weather is starting to change and I had a bad sinus headache. If I didn’t have the 800-word requirement, I wouldn’t have written at all.
Space Dutchman: 818
I suspected I needed to do the full cycle. But I wanted to keep up on the word count, so I did only the first two chapters for about 30 minutes (then panicked a little because I netted 100 words out of that cycle).
Straight cycling. I cleaned up consistency issues, eliminated repetitions, clarified some points in more detail.
Space Dutchman: 1037
I cycled through two more chapters. But it was very clear I’d bumped into the climax.
I decided here I was going to focus on the cycling, rather than the word count. So more extensive cycling, mainly for story continuity.
This was the drive to Nostalgia Con. I thought I would easily get more cycling on. That was overly optimistic. I did a little, but I was going to sleep, so it wasn’t much.
Did a lot better with the cycling. The word count’s actually staying about the same as I bounce around, even when I take out the extra character (it’s obvious he was self-editing).
But exciting that the book went from dragging along to getting done!