I made a commitment to write every day and I am pleased to say I’ve stayed with it.
The thing I have to admit is that I haven’t always been working on my novel. Still, I am up to 71 pages. Not as far as I’d hoped, but much more than my usual output. I’ve been distracted by making comments on Facebook (does that count if they’re very well-thought out comments?) and emailing my kids about what to get their kids for Christmas and then ordering the grandkids’ presents on the Internet.
But every day I make myself work on the novel. I think I will call it “Six Weeks” because that’s how long it takes Karyn (the heroine) to realize what she truly wants from her life. I’d like to think I could finish this in six weeks, but I’m trying to be realistic.
The outline helps. But I have discovered after five chapters that I haven’t kept to it very well. I’ve left out some things and added others that weren’t on the list. But the story itself is going forward.
Today I didn’t work on chapter six. I went over the first five chapters to make they fit in the corrected timeline. I added some scenes, and some internal dialogue to strengthen the character’s point of view.
And then I corrected the outline to match what I had actually written. How lame is that? Is someone going to come in the house, commandeer my computer, and check? I think I have issues with outlines that I haven’t seen addressed in any book or workshop.
There is another step I need to take before going on. I tore out pages 49-50 in last months RWA Report. The article, “The Writer’s Toolkit,” was “Fleshing out your characters.” I plan to go over this and fill in the blanks for the main characters in the book. I can see them in my head, but after I gave Karyn hazel eyes in one scene and brown eyes in another, I think I’d better do this exercise before proceeding.
Yes, there is more to writing a book than sitting down and writing. I can say I’ve published five books, and have written four more that are either abandoned or going the rounds. so why am I making a change now?
Because I want this book to be better. And now that I have the tools to make it better, why not use them?