Saturday 29th April 2017
I woke at 4am with the view that perhaps my strategy of having a ‘blow out’ before a weekend of writing was a bad one. I drank a load of water and felt queasy for about an hour, before falling back asleep.
I woke at 8am, 12 hours after I not so much went to bed as passed out in bed. Thankfully the water I drank had taken some of the edge off my hangover. But I still was questioning my questionable strategy. Hey, Adrian, get drunk on the Friday of the weekend you want to write loads. Great Idea!
As it turned out, it wasn’t a bad idea. Who knew? I shall pretend that I did! Yay me!
The morning was a bit slow, mainly because I was trying to feel human again but also because I was having to write The Climb (as I was too drunk to do it last night). Despite breakfast and lunch I still did not totally feel myself but come the afternoon I was ready to write.
As I mentioned yesterday, my big problem is that the busy day job at the moment has resulted in me not finding a lot of time to write the novel. It’s a bit like a book you keep putting down and forgetting to pick back up. Sooner or later you’ve forgotten what you’ve read and don’t bother picking it back up. Likewise with writing, if I’m not regularly writing, all I’m doing is dwelling on chapters which just makes me focus on how bad they are. As you can see from The Climb, I don’t write every day, but you’ve got to stay attached to the project your working on and so writing as regularly as you can is pretty important.
But over two writing sessions this afternoon I found my groove again. I moved things on enough to not dwell and as a result I found the prose started to be a little bit of fun, both in the act of writing as well as how the characters acted on the page.
I really want to get this done by Monday. Not only would it get it out the way before another busy work week, but it would tie in great with The Climb #100. After the work this afternoon I think I can do it.
My only commitments this weekend were the Godalming School of the Sword social that happened this evening and the sparring tomorrow morning. However, the chapter after this one is the big finale and so a couple of long drives are a perfect time to work out what will happen. After that, it’s just a few concluding chapters.
I still have worries about this novel though. The secondary characters are a mess. They need a lot of work and in some cases, expanding. That’s just as well as this draft has come in 40,000 words under. Now I typically underwrite so by the time I put in a lot of the missing description and expand some characters, adding 20,000 words would not be unlikely but I’m still panicking about it a bit. I’ve always written books that are as long as they are long but I would suspect that any publishing contract would expect a novel at a similar length to the first book.
But all that can be fixed in the next draft I keep telling myself. Just get the first draft done and worry if you have to add another subplot later.
I do like how the book concludes though. That’s feeling pretty tight and a nice natural conclusion. It’s almost as if I planned it! If I can just get the big finale to be an awesome action scene then I’ve got this in the bag. Of course, Book 2 does not have quite the epic scale of book 1 and I do worry some readers may find it lacklustre in comparison.
There wasn’t a lot of time to think about this though. After 4000 words over 2 writing sessions, it was time to get ready and head out to the social. It was a bit of a long drive for a meal, especially as I came back home tonight ahead of going to Reading sparring tomorrow, but the company was good and I figured that it was an incentive to get a lot of writing done this afternoon.
We went to a bar afterwards but I wasn’t drinking because I was driving. After last night, I suspect I wouldn’t have been drinking even if I had been staying over. I left about 11:30pm and then drove home, feeling incredibly tired.
From messages I got whilst in Godalming, it looks like I’m also going out for a meal on the 17th in Winnipeg. I had my memory cards turn up today and with the news on the Northern Lights I’m now getting very excited about this trip. People I chased with last year are chasing as I write this (their livestream is on the other monitor) and have just had an incredible close encounter with a tornado. Can’t believe that in a couple of weeks I’ll be out there with them.
So my plan for tomorrow is to work out the layout of the final action scene on the drive to and from sparring. I still have a scene to finish in the current chapter, but once that’s done I’d like to get straight into the action scene and possibly complete that chapter by the end of the day.
If I can manage that, then completing the novel on Monday remains a very strong possibility. As much as I love it, I will be glad to get this draft done. The day job has seen it take far longer than I had hoped and I’m getting to the stage where I just want it over.
Then I can leave it for a few weeks or months before picking it back up and searching for the missing words and character motivations. I still have plenty of work to do though. I have a short story due for an anthology that I need to write, and the editorial comments for Black as Knight are due back soon.
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