December 13 – I don’t write this, I just take dictation

December 13th, 2012

Ok, so I’ve been telling myself I should write, every single night this week. Then I’ve spend a few hours watching t.v. programs instead. So, no more excuses. I need some friends to pull me out of the mindless stupor of the box and back to the final 20,000 words of this book. So, I’m calling on my Novel Ninja friends (a bunch of local Perth-based writers I met during NaNo) to help me challenge myself with some word wars.

Starting from 8pm I’m thinking 20 minute word wars every half hour from 8-11pm. Everyone welcome.

Ok, pulling myself up by my bootstraps to live up to my promise of Word Wars tonight. First one in 20 minutes.

Doh! No idea what I’m going to write, but it’s time. Biting the bullet. Lets do this thing! 20 minutes, go now!

Ok, that’s 20 minutes. 641 words. Not bad given I had no clue what I was going to write when I started. I need to build on the angst in this scene and I guess I’ve got myself in a good position to get started on that. Next war in 10 minutes.

Ok, next one’s up. Here we go. 20 minutes, starting now!

Ok, 774. A bit better. Raced through some dream sequences I wasn’t expecting. Was fun. Wonder what will happen next. lol

Ok, 9.00pm. time to get going again. Another 20 minutes.

Ah ha! 724. And I ended up starting a scene I didn’t even know would exist. Characters really do write these books you know. We just take dictation.

Time to go again. 20 minutes, here we go. (Or I go, whatever.)

Only 605 words that time, but I stopped about 3 minutes early because I needed to pull myself together again. Crying my eyes out, which is ridiculous because I already know how the story ends. Still, I guess if I can make myself cry with these scenes, I might be able to make the reader cry too. And isn’t putting the readers through hell with our characters part of the whole point of being a writer?

I’m fragile tonight I admit that, but even so I do hope these scenes touch my readers as much as they touch me. Still, I’m very aware that I need to go back and give a good working over on Crey’s dialogue. When I write him it comes out me. But I know he has his own voice, his Italian accent, his correctness of language with those few dialectical quirks that are common to a person who speaks English as a second language.

I also have to work through continuity. Things get revealed to me later in the story and I need to go back to make sure they’re woven through at the beginning. To make sure they’re not in conflict with things from earlier scenes/chapters. My beta-readers are catching up to my well edited chapters so I need to make time to go over the second act. It’s not ready for readers yet.

I have doubts about the whole drafts readiness at this point. I know the dialogue in particular needs careful vetting. Along with the continuity. I need to make sure all the notes I’ve taken are put into action. Part of me hesitates to continue when I know I’ve left so much undone behind me. But maybe that’s resistance talking. I just have to get through this fourth act. Only a dozen or so more scenes.

Ok, going again. two more tonight. 20 minutes.

689. Bit clunky I guess. And again, something weird cropped up I wasn’t expecting. Still, it’s interesting, I’ll go with it.

Opps, almost missed the last roll call. Was writing some more. lol Ok, resetting word count, here’s the last round. Ready, set, go!

And that final run brings me to another 775. Time to add up the total of tonight’s word wars.

Sweet! If I did my math right (and that’s always a big if) I wrote 4,208 words. In three hours. That’s damn good. So, even if I was at war with myself it was worth every minute. Look forward to taking another run at it tomorrow night.

Oh, forgot to add the 395 words i wrote between wars. So that’s 4,603. Nice!

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Rebecca Laffar-Smith

Rebecca Laffar-Smith is a publisher, children's writer, and novelist. In 2010 she gave up a successful 12-year freelance career to focus on her three loves; family, community, and fiction. She self-published her debut novel The Flight of Torque in June 2014 and the first three titles in the P.I. Penguin series in from Aulexic in May 2015. At The Craft of Writing Fiction, Rebecca shares her journey of creation and learning with readers. She loves getting to know her fellow readers and writers and can be contacted through Twitter and Facebook, or Email.