Friday, April 26, 2013

Springing Into Spring...

Once again, I can't believe this is happening to me...
All winter I struggle to get things really rolling with a manuscript and like NR, this one is really starting to suck me in...
And just like NR, I find myself being sucked in only a few weeks before summer vacation starts.
Never fails. *SIGH*
The bright side of this is that I still have about 7 weeks left to go before I lose full writing days and I'm going to shove as much writing into those days as I can! 
I had only one writing day this week. Normally Fridays are writing days too but today is an inservice for the schools in our district. That's okay because I think I may have overdone it again with my last writing day... I managed to get an ENTIRE chapter added in ONE day and since that hasn't really happened since I started writing FP (NR's sequel), that's GOOD. By the time my son got home, I wasn't quite finished so I quickly wrapped up Chapter 8 while he watched TV. Thank the stars I had only a few paragraphs to go before I could finish that chapter! 
I am slowly starting to get things moving between the main characters. How, I'm not saying publicly, only my mentor knows exactly how things are going to play out, and there are several bonding moments between the leading lady and others in the story, some sweet, others are more humorous, and in time, more serious.
I'm also slowly working toward the gem of the idea my mentor shot at me a while ago... Something that "ran naked through her head" and wound up being exactly what I needed for this story! Y'all know an idea is GOLD when you can actually "see" the events unfolding in your mind, after reading only ONE small sentence! 
Correction, make that PLATINUM... 
Anyway, things are slowly leading into this and I'm hoping to show more of the leading lady's personality, etc. in the next few chapters so certain things do NOT come as a complete surprise to the reader... But at the same time, I do NOT want to give away exactly what's ahead for the main characters. It's a really fine line to walk sometimes and once in a while, I have to go back, read everything and make sure I'm not giving too much away and am only dropping hints here and there.
Today is another editing and jotting down ideas day since my son isn't in school. With the eyes acting weird (I need new glasses), maybe it's not a bad thing and it may even help recharge the batteries for my next few writing days next week.
Have a lovely weekend everyone!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

A Great End to a Sad Week...

After the sadness that began the week, things continued on as always here...
Wednesday was another writing day for me, and after going by fits and starts, I finally settled into getting some writing out of the way. Chapter six was finished and chapter seven was started. I did have a loose game plan on what to do and where to go with it but other than that I winged it and believe it or not, it came out a lot better for a first draft than I had hoped.
I took Thursday off from writing although I did do some editing. Good thing because I did catch a few typos, etc and smoothed things out a little more.
Friday was another day I wrote by the seat of my pants and I wrapped up chapter seven. I was going to start chapter eight at that time but I had only forty minutes left before the bus got here and I didn't want to be in the middle of a scene when my son got home from school. When I'm in the middle of something like that, I prefer to finish it and the next scene was going to be a long one so I gave up for the day and did the first edit/reread on everything instead.
Like my mentor once told me (or did she tell me several times?) it's great when the story writes itself!
I think I overdid it this week though. Yesterday I could barely see, my hands were acting up (I have carpal tunnel syndrome for the second time) and my entire brain was fuzzy... So I did NOT open Word at all and wound up spending most of the day away from the computer, relaxing with the cat... Cat really enjoyed it and slept on my lap most of the day! She's a cuddly fat thing and loves to snooze with me!
Today I'm not going to be actually writing but if the urge strikes me, I plan on editing or jotting down ideas. The story has sucked me in, big time, and the more I work on it, the more ideas come my way
Just like its predecessor... LOL
I hope everyone has had a lovely weekend and if you're in my part of Nova Scotia, enjoying that sunshine!
Congrats to my NHL team, the Toronto Maple Leafs, who clinched a spot in the Stanley Cup playoffs for the first time since 2004!! Y'all know I hope they get the cup, they haven't had one in over 40 years (1967 was the last time they had it!) and I would love to see them get it at least ONCE in my lifetime! 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Plugging Along...

Before I begin, I would like to say my thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected by what happened at the Boston Marathon yesterday. I have relatives in that area and thankfully, none of them were near the area at the time. Out of respect for all involved, I didn't post a writing update yesterday and kept my author's page silent, minus an acknowledgement that is.
To those who have family members who were hurt or lost a family member or friend, my thoughts are with you.
Update on the writing:
Two more writing days have passed, and things are slowly coming together bit by bit...
Ideas for the gem that my mentor gave me have waned a little bit so I decided it was time to get back to attacking the main manuscript file. I was stuck in the middle of chapter 5, while working on a later part of the story, and wanted to get moving on in the main file again.
I wasn't sure how to proceed. At first, I thought I'd toss in a comical scene but decided that something serious would be better instead... This scene is crucial to the storyline itself because it is a very early lead in to what happens near the end of the book. The leading lady starts another journey that co-insides with the one she has already started and things will start picking up steam from here. The leading man will be with her on the second part of the journey and things are starting to line up for that to happen. There is some humor inserted into key areas because it is needed but for the most part, the last few scenes in this story have been serious.
What can I say? This plot is just as complicated, if not more so, than its predecessor NR, and so far, it's been a little harder to write because of the nature of the backstory, etc. 
I'm also trying to keep things on track with remembering everything that happened in NR and everything else. Having a notes document and timeline is a BIG help with that. The timeline for everything is almost finished, but I do have a couple of tiny gaps to fill in. That's minor though, and I'll probably get those done while I'm writing by the seat of my jeans, like I've done so many times while writing NR and other parts of this one.
Things are moving slowly by times but I find once I really get into it and get going with an idea, it's not so bad. It's not nearly as absorbing as NR was this time last year but I'm hoping with a little luck, it will get there at some point. 
In other news, my mentor is now getting things ready to publish Book 3 of her Keyholder's Castle series and that should be available on Amazon sometime next month. Again, I helped her with the cover for it and am very happy to be involved with her projects, even on such a small scale! I can't wait to help her with Book 4's cover too, whenever that will be ready. It's still in the "prewriting" stage at the moment so it will be a while before I get moving on the cover for that or anything else my beloved mentor needs help with. Taking a break from my writing to help a friend is a good thing after all!
Have a wonderful week everyone... I have two more writing days scheduled for this week so hopefully I'll have more to report over the weekend.
~Valerie J~ 

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Filling in More Gaps...

Two more writing days have passed and things are progressing nicely in that gem that my beloved mentor suggested to me a few weeks ago.
I did a word count on JUST that area and it's up over 20,000 words so far... Now for something to come THAT far in only a MONTH is only saying what an awesome idea it was! And I'm not writing every single day... 
Imagine if I was able to... I'd probably have this section finished and ready to be spliced in, and I'd probably be a LOT farther along in the main manuscript file, and probably other files I'm going to splice in as well. Heck if I was able to write on a daily basis, I'd have this manuscript finished before the end of THIS year instead of the end of next year, which is my mental deadline. I'm keeping it real and giving myself PLENTY of time to get this one's first draft finished due to time restraints, and other factors.
I'm not sure exactly how many pages were finished yesterday because I was filling in gaps and adding a little bit to different spots, while taking out some irrelevant stuff. It's close to 4,000 words, I know that much, because I managed to get TWO entire scenes written up yesterday, plus fill in the remainder of another scene and get some more stuff added to yet another one. 
I'm not sure how many chapters this area will cover, but I'm thinking at least 3 or four. Yeah, there is a LOT happening at once over a 48 to 96 hour period during the story, and if I don't put in details here and there about different things, some of the action will be missed
It's still pretty intense so of course, it's hard work. Stuff like the characters acting silly, etc is rather easy to do for me because it doesn't require a lot of mental effort, but something like the part I'm working on right now IS quite hard to write up... For me at least. I don't know if it's the fact that I'm a perfectionist even in a first draft or the fact that I know a lot of the characters so well that having them go through something so heartbreaking and scary breaks my heart... But this is necessary for the story to work the way I want it to go.
Thankfully, my beloved mentor has been keeping me on track with things and thanks to her, I'm getting more and more ideas as time goes on, and not just for "this" particular part of the manuscript. All I have to do is mention a small idea to her and just talking to her about it expands it into something a thousand times better, whether she gives me another idea or not!
I have a weird feeling that FP is going to turn out just as long as its predecessor, NR, or almost as long at this rate... Think about it... The part I'm working on NOW is over 20 thousand words at this point, the main manuscript is only in Chapter 5 and getting close to that number, and I have a LOT to fill in between where I am in the main manuscript file and the area I'm working on now, which is the build up to the finale... I still have to write the epilogue (I'm going to wrap things up VERY nice and tightly so I can't write more sequels!) and other things... 
I'm feeling a little overwhelmed at the moment when I look at things and realize just how much I have left to do on this story, but then I take a look at NR, and remember that I HAVE done it once, so yeah, I CAN do it again...
Even if it's the last thing I ever do! LOL
Have a great weekend everyone!