First Draft: week 3

August 5, 2011 at 10:20 am (Writing work)

A really good week: 2800 words/day, on average, mainly because of a couple of very good days.  I’m pausing mid-chapter, but intend to get some writing done tomorrow (hey, last Saturday yielded 3000 words) and so have stopped just before a nice hand-to-hand fight, so I won’t be sitting around at the beginning of the writing time trying to figure out what comes next.  Pausing mid-scene like this does give it a somewhat weird, rollercoaster feeling when I reread the first draft — a cliffhanger every X words isn’t exactly a good thing, but it does work to keep my writing momentum up in this stage.

In lieu of summarizing what I’ve written this week, here’s a look at my thought process while writing a chapter.

  • Why didn’t I outline this more clearly? Dammit, there’s gotta be more to this chapter than just “and then the shit hits the fan.”
  • Who’s got the [redacted]? Okay, so [character] had it last chapter, better mention it so we don’t think it got lost in the fracas at the end of the last chapter.
  • Heh. “Fracas.”
  • Good, good, creepy . . . waitaminute, why am I writing this scene as if we’ve moved to Silent Hill? Dammit, I don’t want my characters to be in Silent Hill! The last thing these guys need is Pyramid Head lurching around a corner at them.  That’s the trouble with dipping into the well of one’s subconscious; sometimes there’s stuff floating in it.
  • How long till the ninjas? How long till the ninjas now? How about now?
  • You know what would be great? If [character] manages to do [cool thing.] What would he need for it? Not the [redacted], but the [trivial thing] . . . oh hey, I had him taking it away from the abandoned building before! Sometimes my muse is smarter than I am.
  • NINJAS WHERE?
  • I’ll need to renooberate the descriptions here, given that this is happening during a cloudy night. Some things shouldn’t be visible.
  • Okay, fine, the necessary details to set up later events are now added. Time for ninjas!
  • I really shouldn’t feel sorry for my characters, but I’ve really put these guys through a lot. Poor little muffins.
  • Huh. Guess I didn’t need the [redacted] at all.

As you can see, this is probably the least serious way to go about this sort of thing.  But having this sort of meta-commentary in my head is useful not just for distraction, but for how I’ll think about it when I go back through the draft.

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