Progress report: One Million Words, week 11

This week’s been pretty good for my wordcount. 5,747 words added this week – about a thousand words more than last week. The average daily output for this week is 821 words a day – quite a bit higher than it was even just a few weeks ago. I’m definitely getting into the swing of things now. The habit has been formed, and my sessions are being more productive than ever before.

My overall wordcount stands at 38,933/1,000,000, or 3.89%, so I’m fast closing on my fourth percentage point. I might even reach it tomorrow. My streak is at 71 days now.

Day by day summary

Monday: 814 words

Tuesday: 872 words

Wednesday: 712 words

Thursday: 1143 words

Friday: 1033 words

Saturday: 536 words

Sunday: 637 words.


I’ve still mostly been writing in the evenings, except on Wednesday when I had a long afternoon shift at work so decided to get it done while I had the energy (though as it turned out, I was less tired on Wednesday than on Tuesday).

Saturday was my weakest day this week, but I don’t think there’s anything in that. I wasn’t working but I was productive in other matters – household chores and suchlike. I may have simply still been tired from a long Friday. On Friday, I was more productive than I expected – I got home from a party at 10pm (party animal, me!) having consumed one alcoholic drink (which is also my total for September overall, so not insignificant) and managed to write a fair bit.

Still, tiredness has been my main opponent this week. Extra work shifts midweek, and early starts this weekend (Matt had to be at work at 7am yesterday, and I got up at 4:55 today to watch the Japanese Grand Prix). Coffee has been an adequate solution, but I’ll have to catch up on sleep tomorrow.

The Story

I have only worked on the Kell story this week. No prompts. I’ve had extra shifts at work, done some taxiing for my fiance who has just started a new job himself (and doesn’t drive) and have been working on other aspects of writing that don’t show up in my wordcounts – research, typing up the Mountain Story, and so on.

I feel like the overall plot idea I have for this second chapter of the Kell story is fairly decent. It introduces two new world elements at different points in the story, including one which is particularly relevant to Kell, and gives my characters some adversity to overcome as a group. But there are some large sections I’ve written one day and crossed out the next (I use strikethrough on Word so as to keep the text for later cannibalisation ro reuse at a better time, and maintain the wordcounts). I guess that’s part of what discovery writing is about, writing something and then having second thoughts, reworking things to flow better.

I have noticed that when I’ve got a longer conversation, I tend just to write lines of dialogue, one after the other, with almost nothing else to interject Kell’s thoughts, the body language of the speakers and listeners, and so on. Something I’ll have to work on improving, but when I get to conversations like that it does get to be all about what’s said.

Take away points

  1. Coffee good. Love coffee. Love coffee mug with Greek alphabet on. But love being able to keep eyes open without them stinging too, so some sleep is probably a good idea occasionally.
  2. I need to slow down with dialogue and think about more than just the words being said, but also what else is going on around the words.
  3. I’m getting that it’s okay for something to just not work, to write something one day that won’t make it. Sometimes I need to try something out and let it sit in my brain half a day before I can realise it’s not right for that moment.

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