Word count: 25,000
Target word count today: 24,000
I’ve spent most of this week very confused, and yet, enjoying the process of writing this novel more than ever. In my second week of writing, I quickly reached the swampy nothingness that was ‘the middle of the book’, where my plot outline trailed off into vague words and question marks, and I began to skip over large chunks of story, leaving instead notes for myself that said things like: ‘something should happen here’.
But as I said, I’m really enjoying it nonetheless. This is partly because I’ve written a lot of big, dramatic scenes. Lost for what to write, I’ve settled for throwing my MC into lots of awful, difficult situations and making her deal with it. I realised two days ago that I had written her into a particularly bad spot, from which she could easily be rescued by a nearby character. However, this meant turning her into a damsel-in-distress to be rescued by a man. Rather than giving her the easy option, I forced the poor thing to get up and keep going on her own. She does finally get aid from the other character, but only once she’s got herself all the way to her destination under her own steam. I still might come back to this in revision and give her more self-reliance in this situation, but for now I need to move on get the story moving.
My plot outline remains vague now until the end, but I’m hoping that once I’ve got a better idea of where it’s going (by just writing until something happens), I’ll have a better idea of where my character has been, and can go back and fill in those missing chunks. Also, the more detail I create of the world, the more I realise I’ve underwritten the opening chapters and the setting. This, I hope, will be really good fun to go back and edit, because there’s so much there to explore. Something to do in August.
For now, I’ll leave you with another excerpt:
Salt climbed to the height of the low summit. She didn’t know anyone who had been out to the old man’s knee before: with, she hoped, the possible exception of her father, and part of her thrilled to be so far from home. It was only a small part, however; the rebellious little corner that resented her mother and hated Jaunt and didn’t know how to feel about Diota. The rest of her, the parts that still loved the city and its dark, twisting corridors, longed to be back there. She had barely rested for two days.
The moon meant that it was too bright, even at night, and the wide open space made her feel exposed as if she had been staked out for slaughter. She paused for breath at the top of the summit and glanced back over her shoulder. It was the first time she had looked behind her since leaving Diota down in the caverns, knowing only too well that a backward glance would show her everything she had left behind.