Friday, 21 December 2007


This week has been really slow for my NaNo. It's not that I haven't been writing - I've written two short present fics of about 900 words each, and last night I got hit by a sudden burst of inspiration for the multi-chaptered fic I was working on a couple of months ago and wrote about 1K on that. My NaNo total being around 500 for the week, I've managed between 2 and 2.5K, so I guess it's not too awful. The thing I'm actually proud of though is that tonight I went through everything I've done so far and wrote an outline for everything which still needs to be resolved. I don't know exactly how it's all going to happen, but knowing what I have to deal with is comforting.

I'm going back to the timer tomorrow though. Even if I just sit and stare at the screen.

Tuesday, 18 December 2007

Holiday Drabbles

I was away for this weekend, so didn't manage to write anything on my NaNo. I finally managed to get a few words down this morning, but it was only 340 - I spent most of the day developing a new website instead and the story just wasn't grabbing me. It will, I'm sure, but I'm on one of those scenes that starts out great then drags itself out til you're not sure where it's going or how on earth you're going to bring it to a close. Tomorrow's aim is not a number of words, but simply to close that scene. Stupid uncooperative MMC.

I did get some other writing done though. As a Christmas gift to some of my online friends, I've offered to write them fandom-related drabbles. Well, I say drabbles, but they're hitting about 800 words each at the moment. I wrote one by hand over the weekend, so today I typed it up and finished it off. I also started on the second and am now 600 words in. So if nothing else I'm keeping the creative juices flowing, which is good. Don't know what I'm going to do over Christmas - will be away for another ten days or so. Guess I'll just have to do my best to grab a PC when I can.

Thursday, 13 December 2007

Alarms & Excuses

Having spent the previous evening talking long into the night with my DH about nothing in particular, I didn't get up early yesterday morning, and guess what? I wrote nothing. Not a single word made it into the document.

This morning my alarm made me literally jump (quite a feat when you're lying on your back in bed - asleep, I might add) and I snuggled back down to recover. Woke up an hour later and finally dragged myself out of bed. Unfortunately I was rather preoccupied, thinking that the express Amazon order I made yesterday wasn't going to arrive, so I made the mistake of switching on the router and checking Amazon, which was quickly followed by LJ, Facebook and various forums, not to mention all the blogs I've been keeping an eye on. So nearly an hour later, I still haven't written anything productive.

For the first time in a while, I'm actually not completely sure what's going to happen next in the story, and that's not helping, but I'm mid-scene - even if I can't picture the next one, I do know this bit, so I have no excuse. Well, I will for the next few days, since we're going to stay with my parents til Monday, so although the document will be making it onto my USB drive I don't think I'll be writing anything. Oh, how I long for a laptop. They're just so expensive though, and we *really* can't afford it right now. Particularly now that the big website we were due to do has pretty much fallen through - I wish people would explain things properly in their briefs. On the plus side, though, I guess that'll mean more time to write. I did apply for an online research job on Monday, which would be great - it's one of those things you can literally do when you feel like it. Haven't heard back yet, have no idea when I will.

So. I'm going to try and write now. Wish me luck.

Monday, 10 December 2007

A productive day at last

It worked.

I got up at 8:15 (the earliest I've seen in a few weeks), put the laundry on, got myself a cup of tea and settled down at the computer. I only actually wrote about 2000 words total today, but that was pretty good compared to my recent record, especially considering that I also copied the whole 55K over into yWriter and split it up into chapters and scenes, putting in all the characters and viewpoints so that by the time I finished I had a reasonable summary sheet. I love it - I actually know what's happened! Just going back and scanning to get scene descriptions was so useful - I realised I'd forgotten several key points. They weren't things that necessarily mean changing what I've got so far, but things that I really ought to remember from now on.

I also wrote the first antagonist PoV scene - rather late, definitely going to need to put something in earlier in the story, but it was good for a change of pace. Had brunch, washed up, wrote a bit more, played around with my character designs. I even washed everything up after dinner, so for the first time in ages the kitchen sides were entirely clear.

I also finally got round to rewriting some fanfic stuff for a friend this evening, which was a nice change; it's quite refreshing to let my mind rest in ready-to-go characters occasionally! Also since it was introspective stuff based on canon it meant that I didn't have to worry about the plot either, which is nice - means that I can just concentrate on the actual writing.

All in all, a good day. I'm definitely aiming to get up early again tomorrow - it really does just give me that extra time to write.

Saturday, 8 December 2007

Missing Routines

I went through a period a while ago where I had routines for everything. I'd get up at a reasonable time, shower, clean the bathroom, turn the PC on, put the laundry on, have breakfast, start work (or play, but the principle was the same). I'd wash up straight after the evening meal so that the kitchen was always in a reasonable state and I'd usually cook from scratch. I even hoovered the house regularly. Then I lost it. And that's too easy to do.

Anyway. I need that back now. Today I didn't get up til midday (woke at 11, having gone to bed around 2, then read for an hour), went shopping in the middle of Saturday afternoon (bad idea), did a couple of bits of website stuff here and there but not much, and didn't do any writing til 10pm. That's where I'm going wrong. I need to get up in the morning and write. I tried the timer today - managed 417 words in 15 minutes. Not my greatest record, but still, it was 10pm. And I don't do working late - I get silly.

I need to kick myself into gear. If I can be at the computer before hubby is at his, then I should be using that time for writing, not waiting til he's gone to watch TV at night. So I guess that's tomorrow's aim - get up, don't stay in bed reading, and instead of playing around on forums that I don't even post in, get writing. It's not like I don't enjoy it when I do.

Friday, 7 December 2007

After NaNo

So after the sheer oddity of the weirdness that was NaNoWriMo and the start of the longest bit of writing I've ever managed, I'm trudging a bit. I'm not particularly worried - I had a whole week during November where I didn't write a word, and although it wasn't ideal I still got 50K done before midnight struck at the end of the month. But it's a bit sad to look back at my November spreadsheet and see that on the days I was writing, I was averaging between 2 and 5K per day. Since I hit that 50K my biggest daily word count has been 725. Today was 703.

Still, the story's there. I had a couple of days where the next scene just wouldn't come - not because I didn't know what would happen, but because the new characters refused to make themselves known to me. So I sat it out, read a bit, wrote a scene from elsewhere, tried some collaging, and eventually went over to and spent ages going through that trying to picture one of them. Eventually she fell into place, and the shop dummies that were standing in place of my characters reluctantly gave up their seats. It's still not quite right, but I've got through that bit and it's a start.

I know part of the reason I'm not writing as much now is that I'm not setting goals. During NaNo I stuck with a timer, 15 minutes at a time for the most part, and it worked. I wrote. For some reason I'm reluctant to continue that, but it means that my writing's been a bit here and a bit there, a couple of lines at a time, which isn't really that great for focus. Of course it doesn't help that I've been feeling rubbishy, but still, I've been sat at the computer, and there's no real reason for me not to write, so it feels odd not to be throwing myself into it. I want to finish this story; there's still so much to tell, but at the moment I'm just having to put one foot in front of the other. I guess I'm just working with what I can see in the headlights.

I'm actually looking forward to editing this, which is a first. Because I've written it with basically no outline, making very few notes along the way, I'm itching to get back to the beginning and just sort it out. I don't want to do that until I reach the end though - I need to carry on the momentum without looking back for the most part. Streamlining, editing, that's supposed to come later.

I think tomorrow I might try the timer again. I won't force it; I've heard enough warnings about how writing when you're not feeling it really isn't worth it. But if I can write for 15 minutes, I can hit 500 words. If I do it twice, that's 1K I didn't have before. That's nothing. Half an hour in the day. Even if I am feeling under the weather. Dainara would have no sympathy for me.