Daily Divulge: And It’s Ramping Up

I’m trying to be good today. I did my writing to music instead of binge-watching Netflix.

Even made it out for a grocery run (and nearly sweated to death. Stupid Alberta.)

Today is going to be a good day, I’ve decided.

Anyway, plunging into the climax now. Cillian’s been snatched, and Leila is charging off to find him.

However, there’s no way I’m going to be able to stretch this out for another 38 days. I need to find a different project to work on until NaNo. Maybe Cassandra and Damien? Decisions for later.

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A Year of Writing Challenges

So if you’ve noticed my little blog at all before, you’ll have seen my daily ramblings about my writing progress and writing life. I’ve been avoiding an explanation of what exactly I’m up to, in anticipation of this post.

I wrote two weeks ago about writing tips, and mentioned that writing daily is one of the best things you can do for your craft. It doesn’t matter how you do it. Go to a cafe or stay home. Set a progress goal or schedule a block of time. Whatever works for you. As long as you do it.

What I’ve been trying for the last year started as a spur-of-the-moment thing. I was attempting NaNo this past November. As usual, I was falling behind with my word count. (I work retail. November is a rough time of year for retail employee.) So I decided that even if I didn’t hit 50k, I wasn’t going to give up halfway through the month. Because that’s what I always do. So as long as I write at least a few words every day for the entire month, I was going to count it as a win. As progress.

As November came to an end, I was succeeding. And I wanted to push harder.

I came across a free download for a printable chart. The goal was to write every day for 100 days. You’d cross off every day on the chart. The idea was that by the end of the 100 days, writing daily would be a habit.

So I decided to go for 100 days straight. Any amount of writing. Some days, that meant 1000+ words. Others, it was a single sentence. I didn’t keep track, but I averaged about 200-300 words a day, at least.

I finished the entire first draft of my NaNo project. Hit 50k partway through December, and then finished it shortly afterward. I started working on yet another draft of my shaman project.

I took a day off. (I needed it. On Day 100, I worked until 2am at the bookstore, was at my mom’s store from 10am until 5pm, and then I was back at the book store for another 9-2 shift. I was exhausted.)

And then I started another 100 days. This time, I had to write at least 500 words. If I wrote more than that, great. If I fell behind, I had to catch up the next day (even if my net total was up.) It gave me a chance to experiment. Writing as soon as I woke up, before I even got out of bed. Writing before I fell asleep. Writing while watching movies.

I learned a few interesting things in the process. I worked more efficiently with the TV off. So that meant either listening to music or in bed. I can bust out 500 words in about half an hour. And if I don’t start my day by writing, everything else goes screwy. (I have some mild-ish obsessive tendencies and like lists and routines.)

I kept track of my word count for that round. Over 100 days, I wrote 59, 113 words. I wound up switching from the shaman to an aborted NaNo project (I think I’ve mentioned it way back in my archives, about Dassyr the Trickster.) It was during this time that I had some serious problems with Novlr. I finished the draft a few days early, and spent some time bouncing around a few short stories and poking at another novel-length project that I’d hardly started.

So I’m now on to my third round. This time, I’m aiming for 1000 words a day. I kept bouncing around for a while, finishing up incomplete short stories. I struggled to hit 1000 words a day because I was lacking focus.

And then I ran out of short stories to finish. And I couldn’t think of any more to start.

The only thing I wanted to work on was the novel I was planning to do for NaNo. It’s the first part in a duology (possibly longer, I haven’t decided) that has its origins in the Beauty and the Beast story. With kink and witches and stuff.

So I changed my plans. I’ll be working on part two for NaNo. I’m actually almost done part one now.

The good part is that writing every day is a habit now. The bad part is that I think it’s crossing over into “compulsion” territory. When I have a bad day (like I have been all week,) I don’t want to do anything but write. I try to stop once I’ve hit my goal, so that I have somewhere to pick up the next day. But on bad days? Stopping is torture.

This might not sound all that bad, but when you’re trying to get a home business to thrive and do simple things like keeping up with dishes, not being able to focus on anything but writing is rough.

That being said, I’d rather obsess over writing than other things.

Anyway, when this round is done (39 days left, including today) I will have several weeks until NaNo starts. No clue what I’m going to do during those weeks. Write something, obviously.

I’ve got 39 days to figure out what.

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Daily Divulge: Misplaced Motivation

Ha, I almost posted this on the wrong blog.

Been having a rough week. The writing is continuing, which is good. But I’m definitely in the head space where I don’t want to do anything but write. And yes, that’s a bad thing when there are a dozen other things I should be doing in a day.

Like going grocery shopping.

Anyway, I have a blog article to write. Then at least I’ll be able to say I did something else today.

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Daily Divulge: Ramping Up

So I wound up skipping ahead to the climax. Or rather, the lead-up to the climax. Now I have momentum. Stopping at 1000 words was tricky, but I have other things to do today (yesterday, I managed to eke out 1000 words and nothing else, so I have to play a little catch-up today.)

Cassandra and Damien are demanding more and more time, too, so I will probably work with them later. After I’ve caught up on shop stuff. And stop getting sucked into the unending pit that is Facebook. I hate my attention span sometimes.

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Daily Divulge: Oh, Hello Monday

Forgot to update yesterday. Oops.

Got my Shakespeare fix last night. We went to see a local production of The Merry Wives of Windsor. I’d never seen or read that one before, but I managed to follow along just fine. (I did read the synopsis of the play, so I knew who the major characters were and what they were up to, but I didn’t get lost in the language.) It was fun! I haven’t seen many of the comedies before, because all I ever studied in school were the tragedies.

Yesterday’s writing was…well, I had no idea what I was going to do. The characters are still about three weeks away from the lead-up to the climax, but they’re settling into a routine. I can’t think of anything else to throw in to shake things up. But it turns out that I can eat up a lot of word count by writing kink scenes. So…yay. That was the entirety of today’s writing. The scene’s nearly done, so I think when I’m done it, I’m just going to jump ahead a couple of weeks.

I’ve also been…cheating? I guess? But not in a bad way. Is there another word for that? The only thing I can think of is “cheating.” The last couple of days, I’ve been left just wanting to write, write, write. So when I’m done everything else, I’ve just…started working on something else. By hand. I’m not counting it toward my daily word count. I could, I guess, but I don’t want to get too distracted from my other project. So far, it’s just a scene that I’ve toyed with on and off for a few years, with a new type of vampire. I want to spin it into something bigger, but it’s not there yet. It’s been a few years since I’ve touched the character. I couldn’t even remember her name at first.

Maybe that’s what I’ll work on once this round is done. I’ll have exactly eight weeks until NaNo starts, and I need something to work on in that time.

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Daily Divulge: Productive Saturday

I’ve been remarkably productive today. Just a little procrastination so far. Word count hit, shop listing up and shared eight ways from Sunday, laundry started. Not too shabby for a lady with some serious attention deficits.

Almost forgot to do this, but I didn’t! See?

Now, to decide what to do next. Practice Greek? Start making a plan to tackle prep for my next market in September? Read? Scribble down ideas for another novel? Too many options.

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Daily Divulge: Three Day Weekend!

Not from writing, of course. That would defeat the purpose of writing every day. Nah, just from the book store. Three days of not sweating to death while throwing around boxes and books and unwrapping 8000 pens (the new season of stationary is coming in. Hurrah.)

Today’s writing was a follow-up scene to yesterday’s genius idea. I did have an smaller idea for a detail to mix in this morning before I sat down to write, and that expanded the word count significantly.

No idea what I’m writing tomorrow.

Anyway, off on errands for me. And then back home for more writing. Article going up on the other blog tomorrow (I hope.)

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