*crawls into the room on hands and knees and collapses on the floor*
WELL. I didn’t specifically say that I was going to completely disappear for a month and a half (because…I didn’t know myself), but judging by the subject of my last post, I doubt anyone is particularly surprised.
But I know what you’re wondering: Did I win Nanowrimo??
(If you want to burst into uproarious applause, I won’t stop you.)
But the crazy thing is that, while I finished the month of November with just over 51k…I WASN’T DONE YET. Which is…weird for me. Before now, the longest book I’d written was 52k. (I write short books, ok?) So I assumed that if I wrote 50k in November I would be finished with my book and free to crash.
NOT SO. At the end of November I was feeling so burnt-out, but I couldn’t put the thing away yet. I didn’t want to completely lose my momentum.
You see the problem, yes?
Long story short, I continued writing almost every day at a much slower rate until the day before yesterday when I finally FINISHED THE STINKIN’ THING.
(…You can applaud again here, if you want.)
Clocking in at just over 66k, it’s about 25% longer than anything I’ve ever written. So yes, I am reduced to a dead blob on the floor, but I’m also quite proud of myself.
But enough of this blather! Let’s hear some more about the actually writing, shall we?
I’ve never done this before (with Nano or any other book), but I decided to keep a writing journal in which I wrote a page or less about how the writing was going at the end of the day (only for the month of November, though. As soon as we crossed into December, it completely flew out the window).
Here are some snippets from that journal.
What do people at castles do?? Read documents and go to meetings and sit on thrones and eat meals at super long tables?? Help. I’m so upset that I can’t have crock pots and cheap awful hotels. I miss writing contemporary.
Clearly adjusting well to the setting. (But don’t you ever get that where you see a crock pot or a spatula or a neon sigh with half the letters out and you think THAT SHOULD BE IN MY BOOK…but then it can’t be because they don’t have those things in the genre you’re writing?)
I enjoyed writing the dinner scene (even if all the other people at the table were actual cardboard cut-outs. Who invited them? We don’t know and neither do they.
Yeah, we have no clue.
I feel like things are starting to get better–I mean obviously. I just introduced the CAT.
One of Roland’s cousin’s had a cat, so Roland automatically adopts her. She has nothing to do with the plot, but I love her dearly.
Whenever I have a cat in a story I just…talk about the cat.
I mean, what else should I be talking about??
So I’ve pretty much abandoned actually trying to make people sound old-fashioned (except sometimes I still do, so woot for lack of consistency). Suddenly seeing the appeal of writing like a Disney movie where they live in castles but use modern lingo.
…Not that I was trying that hard to make them sound old-fashioned to begin with. Mostly just replacing “I guess” with “I suppose” and “maybe” with “perhaps”.
This is how the professionals do it, kids.
When a king summons his nephew to talk, where the heck do they talk? The freaking throne room?? I conveniently left out any specifications of place. Which is great writing, am I right?
So tired, guys. I’m just so tired.
Didn’t write at all this morning–because I was busy writing down a pretty rad dream where I almost fell asleep in a dirty laundry pile. But my name in the dream was Roland, so it should count towards my wordcount, right?
It was SUCH A GREAT DREAM. Seriously. It had more plot than some stories I come up with when I’m AWAKE, how did this happen.
(Also, I’ve been having several dreams lately where I’m falling asleep/wanting to sleep. I’m so sleep-deprived that I’m even tired when I’m ALREADY ASLEEP. Help.)
Me: Roland is finally gonna start investigating, searching for clues, getting info from different people!
Roland: *talks to one person*
Roland: Ok. I know exactly what happened now.
…Why are you like this?
Why is he like this?? We’ll never know.
So, the jester exists solely to say cryptic things to Roland and I’m having way too much fun with it. Seriously. Half of my notes are just random cryptic/shady things the jester says at one time or another.
I don’t think I’ve mentioned the jester yet, but he’s kind of the greatest. Why was he so fun to write??
Roland continues to hear one small hint and proceed to construct an entire explanation and just…why, child. But, as my motto for this book has become: We’ll Fix It Later.
It’s my motto, my slogan, my catchphrase. It’s actually the subtitle of the book.
I was getting tired of all the scenes just being people sitting and talking or standing and talking, so I thought “Hey! Let’s make them be doing something during their conversation! Like…like sword fighting! Sword fighting is cool!”
…except now I’ve set myself up to write a scene where they’re essentially fencing the whole time and…???
Thrust. Parry. Parry. Thrust. Stab stab. No clue what I’m doing.
But it will be dramatic, hey? Does anything else matter?
(Don’t answer that.)
Being dramatic is ALL THAT MATTERS.
Sometimes Roland randomly has to scream into a pillow and just…whatever floats your boat, child.
Yeah…he kept doing that.
So he’s traumatized again now, oops.
Basically every book I ever wrote in a nutshell.
Overall, considering that this was my first ever attempt at writing a mystery… I’m pretty proud of the result. It certainly needs a lot of work but, as I frequently screamed at myself in my writing journal, it’s a first draft!! There’s a quote I read once about how the first draft is the author telling the story to themselves, and that’s exactly what this is. Now that I know the story, I can start shaping and refining it (but not for a while, because good gravy I am putting this book down for at least a six month nap).
What that you say? You want snippets? Well, I suppose, if you insist…
That awkward moment when you realize you’re moving into your dead cousin’s room…
Aunt Eleanor! She basically hates everything, and I love her 🙂
Tough luck, kid. You’re the protagonist. You’re stuck here.
At least somebody was confident the mystery would eventually be solved (’cause I wasn’t).
That’s it for now, folks! *disappears in a cloud of confetti*
Did you participate in Nanowrimo? If so, how did it go? Do you tend to write longer or shorter books? Have you ever written a mystery? Would you be chill with staying in a room that had belonged to your dead cousin? Do tell!
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