Tuesday, July 8, 2008

One step forward, ten back

I got more than 16,000 words written and deleted over vacation last week. So it goes when I write. I wish I was someone who could get it right the first time, but my first drafts are always awful, so I need to rewrite and rewrite until I drive myself insane.

However, the second act is coming together, yay! And will help me substantially revise the first act. The point at which the writing becomes easiest for me is the end of the second act. By then I know all I need to know about my characters, all of the storylines are laid out, I just need to write the finale - I've been able to do the entire third act in two days before - and then retool the first act. There's always a lot of junk in the first act at that point; stories set up that I don't need, or holes where I need to set up a storyline. I also rewrite the beginning last, so that I've got a good grasp on my characters and how they'll play to the reader.

I found this nifty device that shows progress on a book:

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
23,560 / 55,000
The thing is, it's made for people who make linear progress. I'll cut, delete, and then write in such huge chunks that this word count will bounce all over the place. The total word count is also a complete guess, which makes this of limited use to me. My books usually come in around 60,000 to 70,000 words. Whether this one gets that long depends on how many subplots I stick with.

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