James Floyd Kelly

Writer and Swashbuckler-for-Hire

Light at the end of the tunnel

Yesterday I finished up Chapter 18, bringing me almost to the 50% mark of the book in terms of page and wordcount… but in terms of plot, I’m actually closer to the 60%-70% mark.  I could add a few more plot complications in to extend the story, but those new plot lines would likely feel out of place.  Before I started writing, I carefully plotted out the main scenes of the story and I know where the hero starts, where he goes, and where he ends up.

Knowing that I’m nearing the end of the story, I knew I needed to sit down and revisit my outline and make certain I had the remaining action scenes lined up.  As it stands right now, I’ve got a total of 31 chapters planned for the book.  I’m including a screen capture here of my spreadsheet that I’m working from… details are blurred but you can see in the far-left column the dark blue chapters that have been completed and the lighter blue indicating chapters to be written.  (Column 2 is chapter titles, column 3 shows critical scenes in red for certain chapters, and remaining columns list major/minor characters that must appear in each chapter along with notes in the last column to remind me of major plot points.)

If I can average between 2,000 and 3,000 words for the remaining 13 chapters, I’ll be very close to the 80,000 words I’m aiming for… I  know it’ll likely go over 80,000 simply because I need to go back to very early chapters (mostly chapter 1 to 10) and provide more descriptions for scenery and add some dialogue… but that’ll all happen in Draft 2.  I’m already finding myself starting to think about editing and I need to ignore that urge for now and finish Draft 1… it’s irritating to know that back in Chapter 3, for example, that a certain character explained a plot point incorrectly and that I fixed it in, say, Chapter 12… but that’s what my Fix Sheet is for… (and it’s getting quite full).

So, 13 chapters left to write… I’m going to try and knock out Chapter 19 today… we’ll see.  I am finding, however, that each chapter is getting easier to write… I’m not concerned about the odd quirks in dialogue or scene descriptions because I know I’ll be spending a lot of time cleaning it all up later, so it’s letting me just get words down and get these chapters done.  When I started writing, hitting 1000 words a day was very difficult… now I’m finding it difficult to NOT hit 2000 words per day.  This just tells me that the earlier chapters are definitely lacking in the proper level of dialogue and scene development/description.

Okay… enough procrastination… off to get on Chapter 19…

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June 11, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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