Saturday, December 1, 2012

New Month, New Goals

Aw'right. Time for me to stop being a bitch and get back to work. I've actually been back it for the past few days, but wanted to see myself actually produce written words before I made any big announcements along the lines of, No Seriously Guys, I'm Working On the Book Again. For Realz.

(NOTE: in the above paragraph, the word "bitch" should be read in Jesse Pinkman's voice. Thank you for your cooperation.)

Since my life this blog is basically a series of fuck-ups followed by fuck-up analyses, let's get on with it:

Life has been kicking my ass this month, in ways both big (we've had a much rougher transition to Kindergarten than I expected; I'm not getting nearly as many tutoring hours as we'd hoped; The Husband's job is unbearably stressful right now) and small (we had The Son's birthday party, hosted Thanksgiving, my car broke down, our dryer broke down, I twisted my ankle badly enough that I was limping for several days, The Son had a bad reaction at the dentist and his lip swelled up so badly I couldn't send him to school the next day... the dryer, ankle, and lip things all happened on the same day, and the next day I was like some wretch out of the Middle Ages, hobbling around town with my enormous sack of laundry and my drooling, disfigured child).

All that didn't exactly help me to focus on the book. But there were also deeper problems with the writing itself. The Grand Pre-Revision Plan? Needed more Voice exercises. I loved the scene-writing process I blogged about at great and gory length back in October, but I kept stalling out in step 5, which is to write the scene so it actually sounds, y'know, good. I used to love this part of the writing process, but now I just fear it. I'm so invested in this story and so worried that my writing just isn't good enough to do it justice.

And angst aside, I just couldn't hear what the tone of the writing should be in my head. And that's weird for me-- I mean, right now, typing these words, I know exactly what I'm trying to sound like. So then I thought that since I was enthused about doing steps 1-4 in building the scene, maybe I'd just do that, and then make it all sound good in another draft. But then I got overwhelmed and grumpy at the thought of another draft, because doing too little in a draft (and thus making way more rounds of drafts for myself) is 68% of what derailed me when I was writing Eleven Names.

Then I said, Hey, look! Books on my shelf I haven't read!

And THEN (name that movie), I got thoroughly disgusted with myself and ordered me to open up to beginning of scene one and write the first 250 words until I found the tone.

And I think I found it.

And the next day I wrote 250 more words.

So as ridiculously few as that is, and as concerned as I am about my rapidly approaching self-imposed deadline, that is going to my goal for December: 250 words a day, for a total of 8,250 words (including the 500 I've already done) by the new year.

The parameters of the goal:

1) Each day's words exist in a vacuum, so if I write 700 words one day in a burst of inspiration, I still have to do 250 the next day.

2) If I miss a day, the words must be made up.

3) The 250 words is in addition to working on scene-building steps 1-4 for future scenes.

4) Blog progress here every day. I know that makes for some boring posts, but it helps get me back on track.

See ya tomorrow!

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