Progress Report: One Million Words, week 3

This week’s total is 3,330 words. This is about 400 words more than last week, so I’ve done well. I think writing every day is paying off. My streak is now 15.

My total is 7.939/1,000,000, or 0.79%.

Day-by-day summary

Monday: 555 words

Tuesday: 513 words

Wednesday: 247 words

Thursday: 418 words

Friday: 580 words

Saturday: 406 words

Sunday: 611 words.

Analysis

My daily average is increasing. This week it’s 476, which is a significant increase compared to last week’s 418. I was a bit more consistent from one day to the next too.

Wednesday was again a weak day. I did work on that day, but in the morning, and wrote in the evening by which point I’d had plenty enough time to recover. I also worked Monday, Thursday and Sunday this week, and those days were all respectable. I wouldn’t call this a trend yet, but I’ll have to keep an eye on Wednesdays. When I’ve got more data I’ll do a breakdown by weekday and see if it’s a problem day.

Tuesday’s dedication to finally completing Mum’s crochet blanket didn’t have an adverse effect on the writing. I was done by 7pm, and had time to rest my hands before I started writing at about 9:30.

On Friday I wrote in a new location. I was babysitting in the evening, and I wrote from about 10pm til just before 11pm – marginally later than normal, but within the range. I had been reading before writing, and finished the book in question, leaving me with nothing to do afterward but watch TV (I didn’t have the wifi password). I couldn’t go to sleep either. That may have contributed to the good progress that day.

I have continued working on the Mountain Story. I think there may well be a lot I can eventually cut from Monday through Thursday’s writing, as I struggled a little to move the story forward and may have overdone some of it. But from Friday until today I’ve been getting into the proper climactic stuff, and I think that may have helped with the higher wordcount today. I was more excited about the story today.

This week I did not end up writing earlier in the day at all. On all days, I wrote in the evening, starting some time after 9pm. Next week I’ll create appointments in my Outlook calendar to write in the mornings on Wednesday and Friday, and hopefully I’ll get two sessions in those days.

The story

While I was writing on Friday I wrote down a phrase, in the dialogue for the non-POV character (Popacha) of the two characters in this story, that is something my fiance sometimes says to me. The POV character, Cheta, responded with a line very much like something I say in response. It fit, in the context of where the story was at that point. It fit because of what led up to it (the way in which Popacha helps and supports Cheta within their relationship) being fairly similar to exchanges between myself and my fiance too. And I didn’t notice until I wrote the words we say.

It brings back that old advice: write what you know. I think that’s advice that has taken a while to click with me, and has done so in stages. I don’t know if this exchange makes the story too close to my own relationship or if it ruins the story, but I don’t think it does. I think it just reveals a bit about the relationship between Cheta and Popacha. When it comes time to share the story with others I’ll find out for sure. It did make it fairly obvious to me how much of myself I’m putting into Cheta, though.

There was something else near the start that was a bit “yeah that’s got a real world parallel in my life” too. Maybe I just needed to get some of my anxieties out with this story, even if the specific situation is fully in the world of fantasy.

I’m not finished like I predicted I would be last week. Maybe I shouldn’t make predictions. But I’m definitely much closer to the end and mostly happy with my progress, even if I know there will be some harsh cutting from the work done in the first half of this week.

Take-away points

  1. I’m not bound to my desk. I wrote a lot, and I wrote words I’m happy with, on the day I was based elsewhere. This week I may see if other locations are suitable.
  2. Counting the words takes ages if I leave it til the end of the week to do. It took about 30 minutes tonight. Maybe for the next story, when this one is finished, I’ll try typing again.
  3. I’ve discovered how long a cartridge of ink in my pen lasts. I’ll need to buy some more when I’m in town tomorrow, because the fountain pen I switched to after my main pen ran out was annoying and scratchy compared to the smoothness of the lovely Parker rollerball my former colleagues bought me as a leaving gift.
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