Thursday, 5 July 2012

Getting Busy

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.

Bx

Please feel free to visit Laura's blog by clicking here: Office Mango

18 comments:

SJIHolliday said...

Great post - well done on hitting the 5k mark! My ambitious plans to have a first draft finished by the end of June were of course thwarted by work and life and general distractions, but I am pushing on again now. I am trying to take the advice to keep writing and not edit, but I find it so hard to do that! I'm getting there though... I will start blogging about my progress soon when I feel like I am actually making some ;) Great plan for you and Laura to spur each other on like this... keep it up ladies!! x

Laura James said...

Great that you've reached the 5k mark, I'm about half that:) Thank you too for your encouragement, it great having someone to bounce ideas off and generally poke me to get going. It's along way away but you never know, if we keep this up a combined launch may not be out of the question x

Susi, am looking forward to hearing about your progress too :)

Bernadette Davies said...

Thanks Susi :) I was just talking to Laura before about editing and we are both agreed to leave it till after. Editing takes ages and if I start with it now, I think I will loose momentum and probably get discouraged, so I am going to plow on until its done and then go back I think. You must be so close to finishing yours now, I am so envious! And yeah, we have to roll with those distractions I guess...what else can we do! :) x

Bernadette Davies said...

A combined launch...imagine that!! Yes, who knows Laura. You keep poking me, and I will keep prodding you and we will get there x

SJIHolliday said...

Erk... no! I am nowhere near finished, I lost over 2 weeks of writing time last month and am still not firing on all cylinders. However, I will plough on like the two of you and one day we will ALL get there :)

Bernadette Davies said...

Indeed we will :)

Anonymous said...

It's great to hear of all the progress, I find it inspiriing.
I'm no aspiring writer, but I do wish to have sufficient writing ability to get my blog of political rants off the ground.
I actually have some writing ready.
Just caught up in some of the minutia of setting up the blog site the way I want it.

But, I am content to know it's going well for all of you.

Kyl

Bernadette Davies said...

Thank you Kyl. And I look forward to reading your blog. Do let me have the link to it as soon as you are ready :)

Anonymous said...

I am so pleased and excited to hear that you have started at last. You hang in there and we know that you are going to be wonderful and successful writer. It is super to know that you have so many friends encouraging you. Love you lots. Mom xx

Veronica Stewart said...

Hi B!
Wow so exciting!! Well done my friend, that's a huge achievement, before you know it you'll be announcing 25k! I cannot wait to read this story. Keep it going, you know how impatient I can be xxx

*jumps up and down, tooting a horn* Congrats again

Bernadette Davies said...

thank you Mom, I am a lucky girl :) Love you too xxx

Bernadette Davies said...

Hi V,
Ha, the day I can announce 25k is the day we PARTY!! Hear me girl!!
thank you huni for the wishes xxx

Anonymous said...

Well done..... Hurry up so I can retire on he proceeds !

Anonymous said...

You must have finished another 5000 by now. I'll be looking for the announcement.
As I promised, a URL for you

www.theleftlane.org

have fun out there
Kyl

Bernadette Davies said...

Not yet Kyl, but I'm a few words away from 7000...this definitely does take its own time (or I am doing it wrong)

Loving your blog Kyl. Looked for the follow button but cannot find it. :( Also, let me know if you want me to add it to my blog roll :)

thank you for sharing x

Donna B. McNicol said...

Good job getting to your first 5k. It can be a struggle. I second the others that have already said this. Stop editing and just write (and it's a struggle for me, too).

I did this with my second and third chapters and found things flowing much more easily. The characters really did start taking control and I found myself adding unexpected scenes and introducing new characters.

I know some things are a mess but that is what the first edit is for.

Try it, you might be surprised!

Jane Isaac said...

Yay! So pleased to hear this. How exciting - can't wait to read the finished product:)

Katy Huth Jones said...

I'm so glad you're being persistent! Writing is hard work. The times our words flow is glorious, but when we meet that wall of resistance, just keep pushing through it. You are doing beautifully!