Friday, June 29, 2012

Writing in the dark

Couldn't do this in my car. Good thing I'm in the SUV.

Beautiful night for hunting

Spider hunting! Actually, I'm going to stay in the car and watch a movie on my ipad while Jeff hunts for spiders.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012


I cannot believe it's already the middle of the school term for me. I submitted my mid-term paper over the weekend and Monday morning found out I got an A+! I really was not expecting that. Now that we're heading into the final few weeks before finals I am using the opportunity to finish the first draft of my manuscript, Zoe Thanatos. I've powered through the last two and a half chapters and am up nearing the 65,000 word range. As I stated previously I wanted to get up towards 80,000 to have a nice, healthy debut novel. The last chapter (18) I had my boyfriend read he really praised, which is quite unusual for him. He's been incredibly supportive through each and every chapter but with this chapter in particular I think he was happy to gain a new insight into the world. It's written through the POV of a character that has not previously had a chapter but who is a very important character to the world. I was so pumped up by his comments that I wrote the latest chapter (19) through the same character's POV and I think it's some of my best work.

Today I've got to concentrate on school work before beginning the first of the last four chapters, chapter 20. I've got a little outline written out on a stickie on my desktop (I love that app!) to guide the rest of the chapters. I can't believe there are only four more chapters left! Once finals are done I'll spend the month of August fine tuning the manuscript, read and re-read it myself, hopefully (fingers crossed) find a beta reader and work on launching the campaign to publish via Amazon. That should take me right into the fall trimester where I'll be taking on a full course load (2 classes) again. It's going to be a busy summer!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Keeping Spoilers to Myself

My boyfriend and really good friend are both reading my WIP chapter by chapter. Both of them are my biggest supporters. Neither of them wants to be spoiled. So basically I have no one to talk to about the intricate (in my mind at least) plot points that are going to be coming and I feel like I could just burst. The two people I talk to the most in the world who know me better than everyone else and I can't tell them what happens next!

I expressed this frustration to my bf and he basically said "I bet that's how JJ Abrams feels". After I dismissed his clearly misguided (albeit sweet) attempt to even compare me in the slightest to one of my favorite storytellers of all time, I decided he was at least partially right. And I wanted to spoil him right there on the spot. 

Other people feel this way, right? I want people to read my story and be surprised at what's revealed but I also wish there was someone in the world I could share the surprise ending with (not fishing for a volunteer, just typing out loud).

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Floating Chapter

Since my last post about how I was going to finish up my manuscript, something strange happened. I stopped writing. This had happened once before after writing what I felt to be a fantastic chapter. Had I drained the well? I spent a day or two plotting out the intricacies of the story that would fit in to this story and potentially carry over into a second book, and the process in and of itself was rather daunting. I was thinking BIG!!! when what I needed to do was think "doable". So I came up with the plot and then still did not write anything.

Finally last night I started writing. The POV is through a character who so far has only been in a few chapters, has never had a POV chapter before. And yet she is one of the most important characters in the entire story. Actually, I like writing from her point of view. The only issue now is I don't know where the chapter falls within the final eight. So far it's a floating chapter that has no real place, but whose content is paramount to the story. I've never written out of sequence for this manuscript and the idea of it frightens me a little. What if I'm unable to connect the chapters around it? What if my brain won't be able to keep up with all of these intricacies?

I'm not nearly done with the chapter yet and I'm not quite sure where I'm going (I have a vague idea) but it's an interesting experience to write through this character's eyes. It's giving a lot of back story that may prove helpful to the reader, and hopefully will be a surprise. I'll just have to see how it comes out.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Writing Update #2: Projections

Since my last update I've surpassed 50,000 words and currently heading towards 54,000. I have 16 chapters broken up into two parts, with chapter 17 and beyond constituting part three. Come to think of it, the first two parts are equally distributed in the amount of chapters. That's a happy accident. I wonder if there are any other coincidences like that?

Part One

  • Chapters 1-8
  • 28,132 words
  • ends on page 104 (based on current formatting)
  • 3,516 average words per chapter

Part Two

  • Chapters 9-16
  • 25,089 words
  • ends on page 206 (based on current formatting)
  • 3,136 average words per chapter 
If I add the two average words per chapter and divide again, I come up with an average of average of about 3,326.

Projected Part Three:
  • Chapters 16-23
  • 26,608 (based on 3,326 average words per chapter)
  • Page count at end of chapter 23: 308
  • Total word count: 80,000
I would prefer to have a higher word count than that but I know this is just the first draft. One thing I've noticed is that I tend to write scenes that are very dialogue-driven without much detail as to what is going on, and I think that prohibits some character development in the finer aspects of their mannerisms. 

I see myself finishing the last chapter, taking a small break from the book in general, then coming back and reading it from the start, editing in and out necessary information. Generally speaking I would like the finished manuscript to be somewhere in the realm of 85,000-90,000 words total. 

Since I am planning on self-publishing I've been coming up with a marketing plan for the book itself. Fortunately I learn a great deal about social media in my Media Psychology grad studies; this definitely gives me an advantage and a sense of confidence about the efficacy of self-promotion. 

Another aspect I'm very excited about is the book cover. I've been playing around with one idea and this morning I think the whole thing came together in my mind. I'll have to fire up my other laptop to get to Photoshop to make it. I hope it comes out like I envision it in my mind. 

And the last bit of update is that I think I've settled on a title for the book. I'm not ready to announce it until I'm sure of what it will be but the one I have in mind is already incorporated into the cover design I have in mind.... so I guess it's fate! 

Now that I know where I'm headed and how many chapters I can write for part three, I can start making an outline of where things will happen in the story. Looking forward to it! :D

Edit: I couldn't resist. I fired up the Dell and set to work on the cover. I may change it or I may keep it. I'm not sure yet. What do you think?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

War on Women?

Honestly I'd like to see them try to say there isn't a war on women. And shame on the 29% of female Senators that voted against it.

Midnight Snack

Cream cheese spread on a (cinnamon) graham cracker and topped with grapes.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Writing update

Ahh! Am I really up and writing this at 3:45 in the morning? YES! Because I just finished yet another chapter in my book and I'm so excited! The writing has been much more difficult lately and this chapter was particularly difficult to get through because it is part of a grand turning point in the middle of the plot.

I am officially nearing 40,000 words with 180 pages and 12 chapters written. It's really coming along!