Novel in Progress: Week 3

I’m glad that I assigned myself to write only 5,000 words this week. I wouldn’t be able to do more, unless it was total garbage. Not that these five thousand were pearls of wisdom. 🙂 I just typed whatever came to mind, knowing that I’d go back anyway at some point, and plow through every paragraph and sentence and word, over and over, until I felt satisfied, more or less.

Well, that’s the thing: I think I’ve finally reached the point when I’ve got to stop writing new scenes, but go back instead, to the very beginning, and start revising all over again, chapter by chapter. And while doing that, I’ll simultaneously jot down the steps of my plot in a separate file. So, since I write organically, I’ll do my outline in reverse. Actually, I’m excited about it: I’ll be able to see my novel in miniature. Also, parallel to that, I’ll do some research on the Internet, which I haven’t done in a while.

So, my accomplishment this week is nothing to brag about. I wish I could say what Elizabeth George said in her wonderful book, Write Away, about her routine: “I approach my daily writing with anticipation, joy, and delight. Really.” (177)

Lovely! Unfortunately, I can’t say the same thing about my work. Some days, yes, I’m very excited, tickled with anticipation of what will happen with my characters. But other days, when I’ve no idea whatsoever what I’ll write about, I dread sitting down at the computer. Then, luckily, I remember the advice Isabel Allende gives to writers: “Show up, show up, show up!” And that’s exactly what I do. And did, this week. In fact, upon completing my self-imposed 30-day writing marathon, I haven’t missed a day of work. And that on its own makes me smile. 🙂

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