Monday, August 1, 2011

Writing Journal- The First of Many

I'm writing a novel, and I thought it would do me some good to catalog the process. They say writing journals is always a good practice for a writer, and who am I to argue with the great and mighty THEY?

At this point, my novel is progressing, but a bit slower than I would like. (Isn't that always the case?) I'm not struggling, but I find myself mired down in getting my characters to their way points. I know what comes next in the story, but I will struggle to write the correct paragraphs or pages that will allow the story to proceed in a logical and natural way. I've tried just skipping to the next part, but it doesn't feel right to me, and I try to pay attention to those feelings. When I don't, I notice that the story doesn't seem right. Stephen King has referred to a story as a found thing, and the writer's job is to clear away as much of the surrounding rock that holds the fossil. I agree with that assessment more and more. Too often, I see that if I am trying to force my story in one direction, I realize I have been digging in the wrong area. It's better instead to follow the natural shape and make sure I get as much of it out of the ground as I can.

I would really like to have this finished by mid-September, but I will need to write 6-7 pages a day for that to happen. I don't foresee that pace working, but there's no harm in trying. My date in mind is so that I can give the completed manuscript to my wife as a birthday present. There are worse gifts one could receive. I would settle for a mostly completed book, and I think that is a strong possibility.

I think my new schedule is going to be an hour at lunch, and an hour or so each evening. I think that might just get me where I want to be.

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