Blog No. 350
It’s August, and you know what that means. Nothing in particular. Oh, it also means that I have a month left to keep working on the Invasion Novel before I
have to have decided to start the novella. I started earlier for Neon Heart (than Thinking Machine) giving myself lots more time to edit and do the layout, and still felt rushed at the end. It was a lot better than Thinking Machine (and I think it shows) but I want to give myself even more time to edit and get beta reads. This next novella, Broadcast Wasteland, should be shorter than Neon, but longer than Thinking, if I manage to write it the way I’m planning. I don’t want to take a break from the novel, but I’ve had to come to terms with the fact that I’m not getting as much done as I’d hoped (and the novel may be bigger than I had planned). I don’t think either of those things are too terrible (especially the bigger, that should come in handy with the edits) but since I’m going to be taking a break, I’d like to get close to the halfway point before I do.
That gives me the rest of the month to knock out about 15 000 words. I’m currently sitting around 45 000 and given the place I am in the story, I expect the first draft to be well over 100 000 words (maybe even 120 000). That’s not to say that’s how long the final book will be. Since I’m still figuring things out with the story and the tone, there’s going to be some (potentially) big rewrites for the second draft. There is certainly going to be some dead weight to cut too. I’m bad for repetition and belabouring points in multiple scenes (I think it may come from my slower first draft pace) so I expect that there will be similar scenes close together that will have to be culled, merged, or otherwise addressed. I don’t usually have a pacing problem (some people have said the novellas are even on the too fast side) but I’ve only finished one novel before and I haven’t even edited that. It’s probably a mess. Since I fell like I’m overwriting the book, chances are, things will have to be cut in order to keep the story moving. Therefor, too much is better.
That’s my logic anyway. In the end, I won’t really know until I’m finished and trying to edit it all. I’m head down, forest for the trees, writing right now. I’m more concerned with getting through (or to) the current scene and moving on to the next one. I’m really only at the first of multiple big interactions in a chain of them that are the crux of the story. (Does that make sense?) The protagonist has to go to multiple groups that will all need convincing of something in different ways and it’s all supposed to be linked and interact. Think of the old point-and-click adventure games. Get the fish to entice the cat which will knock over the jar onto the person who will leave to go get cleaned, leaving the door free for your character to go through (known as Moon Logic Puzzles). Or something like that.
Wherever I end up at the end of the month, I’ll have to try to get Broadcast Wasteland finished in September so I can get the editing process started and get back to the novel. Events will be picking up again in September too, after a slower summer for that. Seeing as I plan for the novella to be somewhere between 30 000 and 35 000 words, it’s a lot for one month, but again, the pace is very quick, so I hope that will keep me moving. I’ve manage to get the first chapter done during the few down periods I have at the day job. I may be able to get chapter two finished before September too, which would be helpful. All of this is conjecture, though. If I don’t get Broadcast Wasteland written in a month, I’ll just have to take longer. Since it has a deadline (April 2020) I have to get it finished before I worry too much about the novel. But the novel is the long term project that I plan to send out to agents, so I need it for my career to advance at all (even if it doesn’t get picked up, it’s a step in that direction). I guess, it all comes down to writing more, more often. A constant an ever increasing goal.