Yngwie malmsteen in the CD player, two cups of coffee down and a can of vanilla coke nearly gone, and I’ve uped my word count to 11,750. Woo Hoo! A recent email from nanowrimo was great to read. It was written by a writer who also used to work on a newspaper. She gave some great advice in the email. I would post it here for posterity, but it seems that hotmail is being a pain right now and not letting me access my email.
The points were that when you eat an elephant, eat it one spoon at a time. 50,000 words might not be an elephant (I think someone said that it was only 175 pages or so) it is still by far bigger than anything that I’ve ever written. I’ve gone about fifteen or so pages before before the story died on me. I’ve got other short four page starts to stories. Currently, with 11,750 words I am at around 11 pages. I don’t see how this ratio will turn into 175 pages… I’m on par for only 53. Still, 53 pages is a lot longer than I’ve ever done before.
Another point was that things are written one word at at time. Like a long hike, you put one foot in front of the other. But the best point made was when she said that we are writing our manuscript. Part of the writer’s block for me in the past, and now too I might add, is that I’ve got it in my mind to have everything in place before I put it down. This need to have a finished product in my mind before I can write it. Since I never have a finished product in my mind I never begin to write it. The nanowrimo calls December the editing month, and the writer of the pep email says that in the next couple of months you an edit, re-shape, and work on the manuscript, but that it was paramount to actually have something printed on paper, something physical that you could hold and look at to begin the process.
And so yesterday I went on a leisurely walk in the twilight. I wanted to revisit my druid character and so I wanted to be in the mindset for her. I initially planned for her to be the heroine of the story, but I’m open as to where the story develops. I’ve somehow introduced another main character the day before yesterday. And when I came back I was called by some friend and invited to come over. I had just made my coffee and cranked up the word processor when they called. I wasn’t in the mood for company really, wanting to create, but I went over anyway. I didn’t make their wedding last weekend (opting instead for the work that I could get) and I felt terribly guilty about it. After that I had another friend, whom I don’t see enough, and I never got to sit down and write. I was tired around midnight and thought that if I played some HALO (I LOVE this game) and shot some aliens with rifles and hand grenades that I’d wake up a bit and I could write a bit. Nope… I got more sleepy and finally went to bed.
Today I thought that I was going to write about Jera. But instead I went to the magic user who turned the thief into a dog. What I came up with was, again, a surprise, and I now have two new characters and one of them being quite unique. Of course, how unique can you get in the fantasy genre of writing? It seems that a lot of people in writing in this vein try to outdo each other with the fantasy aspect. I am trying to keep from doing this. I do not want to make the story fantastic… but instead only use the fantasy world itself as the backdrop. Right now I’m just writing out words and letting things go where they go. I have no outline whatsoever. Maybe I can get all 50,000 words (or more) done by Dec 1st and then maybe I can actually edit them into a better story. Who knows.
But now it is after midnight and I am still up (the coffee and coke and late start today) and so I am going to go for a walk to the bank and deposit my one day’s paycheck, give myself a break from the computer screen, and start to think of the next thousand words or so of the story.