Good morning everyone!
Welcome to day 2 (of 30) of NaNoWriMo!
Daily ending word count goal: 3334
Weekly goal: 11,667
Yesterday’s target: 1667
My current word count: 1741
Well, I made it. Was it easy? No. It wasn’t one of those magical days when the draft writes itself, that’s for sure.
As I mentioned yesterday, I had planned on making progress primarily on the labor/delivery part of the draft. I suppose I technically did… but just a couple of sentences that go at the very end of that chapter. Didn’t make much progress on that chunk – not for lack of trying!
I think my own expectations were getting in the way, as they often do. See, there’s a difference between “I can’t write anything at all” and “I can’t write well enough today to live up to my own standards.” And in general, I’ve gotten to the point where I can write SOMETHING most days, by just shutting off the caring switch – and giving myself permission to write something just okay or even bad (with the expectation that I can edit it into something better later).
But if it’s a scene or chapter that I’ve been really looking forward to… well, I start not being able to do that. This L&D scene is something I’ve been dreaming/thinking about for a couple of books (this project is book 5 in a series). So I have it waaaaaaay built up in my head to the point where I have made it so I can’t live up to my hopes for it.
I find the same thing happens when I go on vacation. I have to be really careful not to think about the trip too much before we leave – otherwise, I’m disappointed when we actually go. Reality has a hard time competing against my imagination – and so do my own words sometimes.
But it’s not all bad news!
When I felt that "stuck"ness on that one scene, I pranced off to another scene that dramatizes a pretty unconventional love story between a couple of immortal monsters – and I sat there editing it, which mostly didn’t move the count… but then I found myself adding a few sentences/clauses here and there to spice things up (funny/poetic ones occurred to me as I was messing around) – and ended up with a couple hundred words that way.
Still not enough. Grr…
At that point, I just kind of scrolled through my draft for a bit until I found a quote by Aristotle that starts one of the chapters – and after recovering from the pretentiousness of past self, I realized I hadn’t written that chapter and remembered I had a hard time figuring out how to get into it (it involves some planar travel – which can be hard to explain and I’m trying to do so creatively and make it particular to each plane, as a treat for the readers?).
But then I remembered a chat I had about how to introduce that plane – and even found my notes on it (which I’d forgotten to transfer over to my project file/draft) and it hit me like a bolt of lightning.
I figured out a major plot point and character arc mystery I’ve been chewing over for a while. And it was perfect! I was even able to link it back to something that happens in the very first scene in the first book. It was wild… like it was always meant to be.
Anyway, I easily wrote the rest of the words in that scene – and I have a good foothold in that part of the draft to write more there later.
But yeah! Sometimes I’ve found that is the way to make progress on days when you feel like you “can’t” write – if you’re writing something long like a novel, try switching to a different part of the same project. You might just be surprised.
I think editing/polishing another part also helped – it got me engaging with my own writing voice but in a way that felt casual/natural.
But yeah! That’s my update.
I still owe myself an organized list of what I have left remaining to write. I’m hoping to do that after I finish today’s words… would have done it yesterday but I had a TON of other writing to do and a medical appointment.
How are y’all doing?
It’s okay if you didn’t make it – just keep checking in and letting us know how you’re doing (even if it’s mostly planning or something).