In today’s Journal
* Quote of the Day
* The Writing: An Update and a Challenge
* Of Interest
Quote of the Day
“Writing is an on-going, self-sustaining compulsion….” Robert J. Sadler
Welcome to Daun and any others who have joined our little community recently. I hope you find the Journal interesting and a source of knowledge and inspiration for your writing. This Journal will always be a no-fluff zone.
The Writing: An Update and a Challenge
I usually finish a 35,000 to 50,000 word novel in about 14 days. In fact, the last few novels I wrote all came in at exactly 14 days.
So I’m kind of in different territory on this one going into Writing Day 17. I’m not worried at all, but that’s part of what made me realize this is kind of a practice novel.
I mean, it’s a good story and I’ll definitely publish it after my first reader has a look at it. But I’m using the writing of this novel to get back into the practice of writing fiction after my long, forced hiatus.
So I’m not too worried about the decreased daily word counts and the time it’s taking me to finish the thing. Actually, at the moment, I suspect I’m not quite halfway through the story. (Of course, I don’t have any way to gauge that except experience.) So this one might take a month or even a little longer to reach the end. And that’s fine.
The writing’s going all right. The daily numbers aren’t as big as I had hoped they’d be, but my restart is still in its early stages. And it’s a good idea to work your way up to spending more time in the chair. So I’m just saying, If you’re going through something similar, don’t let it get you down.
Every book writes differently, and in my case, every series writes differently too. The Blackwell Ops books take a little extra time because there are at least three or four pretty vibrant scenes that take place in locations I’ve never visited.
So at times, I have to do what I call “spot research.”
Whatever that term means to anyone else, to me it means from time to time I have to pop over to the business computer, go online, and look up, for example, an area in New York City, or a tiny town in the south of France an hour or so southeast of Marseilles, or Maputo, Mozambique. or whatever other area in which my operative is about to have to function.
I like to be as true as I can to the terrain and the people. I use Google Earth and Google Street to visit and get a feel for the landscape and terrain, the houses, etc. I even did a little research on the monarchy of Mozambique.
Of course, all of the Blackwell Ops operators are well-travelled and far more knowledgeable than I, so really all I have to do is sit back and watch and listen, and try not to miss too much.
But I don’t dive down a rabbit hole with this stuff. I just find what I need and go right back to the novel. Usually I’m away for only a few seconds. Still, doing even that much takes time and interrupts the process.
Of course, it requires a bit of an adjustment to go from from writing with the creative subconscious to researching with the conscious mind and then back. If the research dive is longer than a minute or two, I typically take a break and come back to the writing later.
So writing a Blackwell Ops story is a bit like stumbling from one tree root to another to another while traversing a wood in the dark. The forward momentum is always there and I never quite fall, but there seems always to be one more bit of spot research to be done. (grin)
Exiting The Bad Place and a Challenge
I have no idea what my next novel will be, but more than likely it won’t be a research-heavy Blackwell Ops book. I need to cut loose and really let the story run again.
Also, since this is the novel I’m using to drag myself up out of what I’ve come to loathe as The Bad Place, I’m going to start a new challenge with my next novel.
With that novel, I’ll challenge myself to a new daily word count goal of 3000 words of publisable fiction per day. That’s at approximately 1000 words per hour, so about 17 words per minute.
Also, whatever day I start that novel will start my personal 365-day calendar, during which I’ll strive to write and publish at least 1,000,000 words of fiction.
It shouldn’t be that difficult. If you divide 1,000,000 words by 365 days, you’ll find the average number of words you need to write every day. Surprise — it’s only a little over 2700 words per day. Yes, really.
How many novels and/or short stories will fall out of those million words and run off to readers? Who knows? And it really doesn’t matter as long as I get to have the fun of writing them. (grin)
Thank you all for being here. It’s great fun being on this journey again with all of you.
Talk with you again later.
See “Some More On Licensing Expo” at https://www.deanwesleysmith.com/some-more-on-licensing-expo/.
See “Confessions Of A Blown Deadline” at https://killzoneblog.com/2022/06/confessions-of-a-blown-deadline.html.
See “It’s Always the Time for Meter and Rhyme” at https://www.thepassivevoice.com/its-always-the-time-for-meter-and-rhyme/.
See “A New Book Expo? Not By a Long Shot” at https://www.thepassivevoice.com/a-new-book-expo-not-by-a-long-shot/.
See “How Writers Fail (Part 4): Aging Writer Edition” at https://kriswrites.com/2022/06/08/business-musings-how-writers-fail-part-4-aging-writer-edition/.
See “Licensing Expo 2022” at https://kriswrites.com/2022/06/01/business-musings-licensing-expo-2022/.
The Journal…………………………………… 940 words
Writing of Blackwell Ops 8 (tentative title, novel)
Day 10… 2303 words. Total words to date…… 20106
Day 11… 3134 words. Total words to date…… 23240
Day 12… 1257 words. Total words to date…… 24497
Day 13… 3078 words. Total words to date…… 27575
Day 14… 1597 words. Total words to date…… 29172
Day 15… 1901 words. Total words to date…… 31073
Day 16… 2569 words. Total words to date…… 33642
Total fiction words for June……… 27658
Total fiction words for the year………… 39435
Total nonfiction words for June… 10100
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 90710
Total words for the year (fiction and this blog)…… 130145
Calendar Year 2022 Novels to Date…………………… 0
Calendar Year 2021 Novellas to Date……………… 0
Calendar Year 2021 Short Stories to Date… 0
Novels (since Oct 19, 2014)…………………………………… 66
Novellas (since Nov 1, 2015)………………………………… 8
Short stories (since Apr 15, 2014)………………… 217
Short story collections……………………………………………… 31
Disclaimer: I advocate a technique called Writing Into the Dark. I’ve never said WITD is “the only way” to write, nor will I ever. However, as I am the only writer who advocates WITD both publicly and regularly, I will continue to do so, among other topics.