Writing reboot progress report, 11 May 2014

I’m still accidentally writing “2013” first try, seriously it’s nearly half the year in I should have this by now.

Today’s music is Mumford and Sons. All of it. I like Mumford and Sons and anyone who tells you they’re no good probably went to De Montford “University”.

Thoughts and Plans:

Today I need to finish off Fiarra getting a bit lost in the old log books. I’m worried about how to make this interesting. The text of the log books would be quite dry, so I’ll avoid quoting the log books. There are two parts to this. Part one is Fiarra’s Dad, whose departure from the island after his sentence was over is recorded in the first log book she picks up. This is an emotional topic for Fiarra. Her coping mechanism in the mine was to imagine scenarios in which she finds him again and they go on adventures. He left when she was a kid, expecting Fiarra and her mum to only be a few months behind.

The second part is the records of meetings in which it was decided that convicts couldn’t have free passage home and would have to earn money through selling their labour in order to purchase tickets home. This was an initiative by Governor Jephon, the guy who was governor from that point in time until the plague.

I do wonder if this would be rather dull, though. And perhaps not the best time to place that particular discovery. I’m not even sure I need to include it at all. I suppose I could weave it into the new Governor’s motivations and backstory. But if that’s the case, it’s still not the right place to include. Maybe I’ll drop it, have Fiarra just get lost in memories of her Dad before snooping elsewhere trying to ignore the cupboard where she found the log book in question. Then go on to her other tasks and then return down to the store room to finish the interrupted confrontation with Prentor. Yes, I think that’ll work better than my original plan. There’s no space for a history lesson just yet.

Starting writing 20:18.


Finishing 21:15, or rather giving up 21:15 having stared at the page for the last five minutes. 956 words. I finished with Prentor responding to what Fiarra had said earlier. I’m not sure how to have Fiarra respond or react to that. I want to get to the point eventually where Fiarra and Prentor are almost friends. Not quite poking fun at one another friends, but certainly getting along fine without residual wariness. That’s still a few steps away, but for now I need to get Fiarra to the point where she’s stopped hating and avoiding him.

With what Prentor has said, I’ve established another aspect of his character: he’s not brave. He’s the keep-the-head-down type. And Fiarra understands that, because that’s how she acted in the mine: avoid confrontation, don’t get hurt.

Whether Fiarra believes what Prentor has said at this stage is still something I need to work out. And if she does or if she doesn’t, what she does or says next. Well, I’ve got the next 23 hours to work out what to do about that.

In other news, the story is now only a couple of hundred words shy of 30,000 words – a landmark I will therefore certainly reach tomorrow. Nearly a third of that has been written this month, so I’m definitely marching forward on this. On the other hand, that’s 30,000 words where I’ve barely even started, or so it feels. I have a rough idea of where the plot will be going in the future. Fiarra’s got some friends to find, some allies to make and some plans to put into action, all before I reach the half way point, and given how long it’s taken me to get to this point, it could be that I’ve got a novel-length manuscript on my hands by the time I reach the half-way point. I don’t want to rush things because I think it’s important that I get all this stuff in, characterisation for the key characters, backstory, motivations, subtle changes in relationships, hints and foreshadowing. Not to mention Fiarra’s voice. And yeah, maybe the editing phase will see some serious cutting, but I don’t think it’ll lose a huge amount. I guess I’ll see.

2 thoughts on “Writing reboot progress report, 11 May 2014

  1. Hi, I have just started following your blog. I enjoy your progress reports and the fact you list the music you are listening to on each one.

    I hope you don’t see it as an imposition but I was nominated for a Liebster Award on my blog and wanted to pass a nomination on to you. If you are interested, please click the link below to see what it’s about:


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