I have just passed the 5000 word mark on the novel that I am writing. Yes, I actually typed that - the novel that I am writing. 5000 words does not seem like such an incredible landmark, but it has taken me literally days to get there. It's a hell of a lot harder than I ever thought.
I wont get into details about what it is about, but I will say that as I write I am now being faced with a lot of potential questions that I have no reference to answer. Well, that's my problem to solve I guess and considering it's my book, I can potentially write whatever I like and make it up as I go along? However, I need to make it at least slightly believable, right?
I now find myself lying in bed at night wondering how I am going to explain this, or how I am going to make that happen. Then, realising another huge obstacle that I will need to have some sort of explanation for to make it sound legit. Urgggg!! Its crazy!
Getting one page done can take ages. I'll type a sentence, read it and then backspace and do it over, differently, so it reads better, and then backspace again. This is why reaching those 5000 words is such an amazing landmark for me, I've literally written 15000 words, but deleted and rewritten most of it.
I have had so much encouragement from so many wonderful people I cannot even begin to say, though I will try to mention some of them now.
Mark Frankcom has been a huge encouragement. He is a published author and is constantly asking me how I am getting on. Most times, I have had nothing but excuses, but he has egged me on relentlessly. Jane Isaac too, another published author, who I have blogged about quite a bit has been a treasure house of information and encouragement. She has shared with me ups and downs and tried to advise me on how to proceed and I have taken every little bit of information straight to heart.
My daughter, my biggest encourager pokes and prods me and asks me when I am going to get started writing and has patiently listened to my ideas and come up with her own ideas and is now avidly reading and the look of excitement on her face only makes me want to do more more more! I fear though, that she would love it even if it was a epic fail.
Veronica Stewart, who I have practically known my whole life has recently started writing and we bounce off each other too. She has this giddy, excited attitude, which rubs off on me a little and I think, in a sense, we spur each other on. But the best thing to have happened to me recently, and what probably really got the ball rolling on this 'novel' is Laura Jamez. I met her on twitter and reading her blog and her tweets I realised I was looking at another me. Our situations are very similar. Around about the same age, with the same ambition, with the same life distractions. So together, we came up with a plan. Once a week, every week, we pass on a chapter to each other. We critique it and encourage each other and advise each other if we get stuck. The good thing about this is that I am now forced to type something. Granted I have a whole week to do just one chapter, but I now need to be disciplined enough to sit myself down and ensure I have that one chapter done. Instead, I have found, I don't stop writing, and its this that has been powering me on to be able to tell you I have reached 5000 words.
Its early days I know. I don't know how long we will continue to do this before some life distraction intervenes, and I am a realist and know that things constantly change, but I do hope that we will continue to do this for as long as it takes. Because its good for me, and it's getting me focused.
Whether this novel ever actually gets finished remains to be seen, and if it does, whether it gets snapped up by a publishing house is a bigger hurdle to face. There is always the self-publishing option to consider but right now, I need to focus on the next 5000 words. Hopefully I will get there quicker than the last 5000 took.
Please feel free to visit Laura's blog by clicking here: Office Mango