Not much to report today. Writing is proceeding apace, and I’ve just completed Chapter 6. I added a bit of it to my WriMo profile excerpt thingy, because it didn’t seem completely stinky. Both that and my word count from the past two days were surprising, because I managed to clock myself on the head with a ceramic bookend on Sunday. It’s a long story, but it meant I was writing 2000 words a day even while K watched me to make sure I didn’t have a concussion. Who knows, maybe it knocked out my Inner Critic instead.
Onward and forward!
If you’re paying close attention, you might have noticed that up until today I was blogging my NaNoWriMo progress once every two days. That was no coincidence; my evil plan had me finishing a chapter every second day, with 15 chapters in all. That worked until yesterday, a day when my productivity crashed so hard I actually fell behind the projected schedule, despite an early lead. I was no longer just Not Exceeding Expectations; I had entered the realm of Falling Behind.
It’s what WriMo founder Chris Baty calls the “Week Two Wall—a low-point of energy, enthusiasm, and joie de novel that strikes most NaNoWriMo participants between days 7 and 14.” And boy, does he get that right. I’ve been avoiding the novel like it was some kind of thing people avoid all the time, choosing to do anything else instead of work on it. Because that’s what it had become: work. Even space monkeys couldn’t help me out of this pickle, because it wasn’t so much about not wanting to write, but more about not wanting to suck.
It’s late and I’m tired, but I just wanted to let you know that I posted an excerpt over on my WriMo author page. It’s probably horrid, but I was particularly proud of it just after having written it, which was about five minutes ago.
…and that’s the real problem with the excerpt thing. I’m writing, writing, writing ever onward, never looking back, right? Well, that’s a problem when I want to pick something out to be representative of my work. This is supposed to be the Shitty First Draft That No One Reads ™, so I can’t just pluck something out and hope it’s excerpt-worthy. Neither can I go back and read through it looking for gems, because that would be ever backward, not so much onward. Even if I did find something, I’d be tempted to edit it, another no-no.
So instead, I just grabbed the last few paragraphs I’d written without cringing and uploaded them. Enjoy! (No space monkeys in this section, but maybe tomorrow. I haven’t a clue what the next chapter is about.)
I just finished Chapter 3, and my main characters have finally had a chance to catch their breath. The space monkeys are no longer chasing them, so they got to introduce themselves a bit and get through some exposition. Writing that was pretty easy, I just chugged along filling their mouths with dialogue.
And if you believe that, I have some space monkeys I’d like you to meet.
So this is when it gets hard. That didn’t take long.
I just finished the second chapter, and boy was it a tough one. My main character gets put on trial for something she didn’t do, and things have to get really bad in order to get her in the right place to make the rest of the novel happen. I spent the last two days putting it off, either not writing at all or writing things that weren’t the actual trial.
As it turns out, I hate the idea of writing dialogue for characters I don’t like, especially when they’re doing bad things to my protagonist. The scene required Bad People to do and say Bad Things, but I just couldn’t bring myself to make it happen. (I even invented a new character so that my other main character would have someone reasonable to talk to while witnessing the whole thing.) Fortunately, once I realized this, I did what any good WriMo writer would do: I called in the space monkeys.