Daily Writing Check-in: December 16, 2018

Words/Time: 1 hour, 22 minutes putting my 2018 NaNoNovel into Scrivener by the scene.

I made some serious progress today! I had to boil down the rest of the scenes in a sentence or so each, and then figure out where all of the “past” events best fit in as flashbacks in the “present” time. It was written all out of order. Sometimes it was obvious where the flashbacks belonged, but in a few places I had to jot down some new things that could happen or be discussed in the “present” time, to prompt a flashback.

I am pretty happy with the layout now, which is basically a new outline. I suspect I will make some further changes when I get into revision, but that’s going to be much later. Tomorrow, I will copy and paste the actual scenes into Scrivener in the order I came up with today, and then I will be moving on from this novel, letting it rest for a while.

After that, I’ll move on to goal #2 in my list of short-term writing goals.

goal tracker 12-16

Definitely not slacking off this month!


Daily Writing Check-in: December 15, 2018

Words/Time: 21 minutes putting my 2018 NaNoNovel into Scrivener by the scene.

The draft I wrote last month was written in a somewhat complicated way, or at least it will be complicated to sort it out if I wait a long time to do it. I may have forgotten my plans by then. The novel starts in “present time,” then the bulk of the story is told in flashbacks, sometimes even going further back during those scenes. But as the month went on, I added quite a few unplanned scenes to the story, and I don’t have the organization figured out yet. So I put in the first half of the story, the organization for which I knew. And now I have to outline the rest of the scenes and see if I can figure out the best order.

If it turns out to not be doable without writing more, or without too much work, I may actually leave it for later and decide that fresh eyes might actually be what’s best for it someday.

I did not post the previous 2 days, because I did no writing work. It was not out of laziness, however, it was due to working too late. I’m trying very hard to balance family, work, and writing for the first time since starting this job, but an overwhelming project came to a head and I just couldn’t get to my writing work until it was too late, or until I was just too tired. I was very happy to get some work in tonight though.

Daily Writing Check-in: December 12, 2018

Words/Time: 60 minutes finishing a spell-check on my 2018 NaNoNovel.

I was less than halfway through after starting the spell-check yesterday, but I decided to get the rest done tonight. Fortunately, I had time to do that. Tomorrow I’ll re-start putting scenes into Scrivener. Even just doing a spell-check, I was reminded about how much I really enjoy this story. I can’t wait to dig into the revision, but it really does need to wait.

Daily Writing Check-in: December 11, 2018

Words/Time: 30 minutes doing a spell-check on my 2018 NaNoNovel.

I removed all of of the junk that I left in for word count that was pepped throughout the draft, and went to start putting scenes into Scrivener, at which point I plan to leave this story alone for a while. However, as I was copying & pasting scenes, I realized that it would be a lot better to fix the obvious spelling mistakes now, rather than doing it by the scene in Scrivener. In 30 minutes, I got through not quite half of the novel. I sure did write this draft fast and messy.

A Monday Moment: Ghosts

For today’s Monday Moment, I pulled a card from my Story World: Christmas Tales set. I got this a few years ago, but have never done much with it. For one thing, I am definitely the type of person who prefers to keep Christmas-related things for the Christmas season. And I guess I just never think about this during that time. But last night I realized I needed to write something to post for today’s Monday Moment (I prefer to post something I wrote new during the last week, to push myself to do some actual writing practice, even during the revision phase), and I realized this was the perfect time to use this.

“Did you tell her about your dream?” Max asked.

“I told you it wasn’t a dream,” Clark said through gritted teeth.

“What dream is this?” Cathy questioned with a smile.

Clark sighed. “It wasn’t a dream.”

“Well, it certainly wasn’t the ghosts of your dead parents,” Max muttered, going back to his work.

“Ghosts?” Cathy echoed.

“I saw them, Cathy,” Clark insisted. “Standing right here, plain as you and me.”

“Surely you don’t believe in ghosts,” Cathy said with surprise. She had always thought Clark to be much more level-headed than that.

“Why not? I can do many things that would seem supernatural to some people. Sali was able to bring people back from the dead. Who says ghosts are completely impossible?”

“Sali wasn’t exactly…that doesn’t matter right now. What did your parents say?” She might not believe that he actually saw the spirits of his dead parents, but the encounter still meant a lot to him. It was worth hearing what he had to say about it.

“They didn’t say anything. Not with words. But they were together, and they were happy. Somehow I just knew that they were both happy wherever they are now.”

Cathy frowned but tried not to be very noticeable in her reaction. “Why do you think you saw them now?”

“I have no idea. And I knew you wouldn’t believe me, which is why I didn’t plan to tell you!” His last few words were aimed at Max, who chuckled without turning back around.

“This time of year…it’s always hard on people who have lost loved ones,” Cathy pointed out.

“I know. I’m sure it’s hard on you too, though at least you still have some family to spend it with.”

“Hey, I’m standing right here,” Max protested.

“I know.”

“Was Christmas a big event in your family when you were young?” Cathy asked.

“Wasn’t it a big event in everyone’s family when they were kids?”

“Not mine. My parents barely acknowledged the holiday.”

“Really? Why?”

Cathy pulled a chair out at the table and sat down. “They didn’t think the original purpose behind the holiday had survived enough, and decided that it was too frivolous now. When I got older, I tried to convince them that we could simply make sure we focus on the true meaning of the holiday, but they didn’t want to do that.”

“But you are celebrating with them this year, right? I thought you said you were going to be with them for Christmas.”

“Yes, things have changed since my mom died. My brother and his family love celebrating the holiday, and even my dad joins in with them now.”

Clark walked over to sit next to Cathy. “I’m glad you’ve reconnected with them.”

She smiled at him. “Just as I am glad that you have your uncle to spend the holiday with.”

“Oh, not Mr. Scrooge here,” Max said, turning back to face them. “He said he wants nothing to do with Christmas this year.”

“Clark?” Cathy questioned.

He shrugged. “What’s the point?”

Cathy looked at Max who nodded at her.

“Listen, you are going to celebrate the holiday this month, and I’m going to be right here with you.”

“What about your family?” Clark asked, uncertain about how he felt about her declaration.

“I will be with them on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. But the day after, I am coming here, and we’re going to have a traditional Christmas Day, just one day late.”

“You don’t have to do that, Cathy,” Max said. “I appreciate it, but you really don’t have to.”

“I don’t have to, but I’m going to. She looked from Clark to Max, and then back again. “After all, you two are my family too.”

Christmas ghosts

Card used

Daily Writing Check-in: December 9, 2018

Words/Time: 32 minutes removing “NaNo fodder” from my 2018 NaNoNovel.

I have removed all the rest of the junk that I left in for word count. There are still many notes that I wrote myself that need addressed, but with those removed, the official first draft of this novel comes in at 81,000 words.

Next I am working on putting the scenes from this story into Scrivener so I can begin to organize it. I left the order pretty messy.

I’m still tracking my progress this month on the NaNoWriMo site, with a goal of about 20 minutes per day worked on writing. However, I’m not needing that extra push these days. I’m still pretty excited about this story, so it’s easy to make sure to work on it every day, even if only for a short time.

goal tracker 12-9

Daily Writing Check-in: December 8, 2018

Words/Time: 44 minutes removing “NaNo fodder” from my 2018 NaNoNovel.

I removed 1637 words and got through the rest of the story! However, this time through, I was spotting the places where words needed removed manually. I did a search afterward for the marker I used while writing during November to flag myself later to fodder, and found 95 more instances that I’ll need to go through and get. I’ll do that tomorrow, but it should be all done tomorrow then!

I almost forgot that the rest of #1 on my list of short-term goals is to organize this story into scenes before I set it aside for a while. I’m glad for that, because I didn’t really want to move from it yet. I’m really excited about it (which is saying something for a novel written during NaNoWriMo, especially when it’s still so early in December, and I’m more often thinking back on the novel with disgust still).

Daily Writing Check-in: December 7, 2018

Words/Time: 20 minutes removing “NaNo fodder” from my 2018 NaNoNovel.

I’m now on pg. 92/132,  and I removed 528 words.

I was doing good to even get to my writing time tonight, because I’m working on a huge project at work that just won’t end. I know I’m going to have to work on it all day tomorrow too, so I figured that the more I could do this evening the less I might have to do tomorrow. Truth be told, I’ll probably still work on it all day tomorrow too, and it still might not be done.

I was tempted to just call off tonight, or cut my time short, but I pushed ahead anyway. I barely feel like I’m making progress getting rid of the NaNo fodder, but at least this is more fun the the work project (on which I also feel like I’m barely making progress).