Word Count: 1,907
And we’re back. Again! Okay so way too long between writing session updates. What can I say? Holidays? Sickness. New Routines. Etc. Anyway I started off the new year’s first writing session with a bag. Nineteen thousand nine hundred and seven words on Everlasting. I was just a bit on a roll. Only took me about and hour and a half as well. Perhaps I’m still in NaNoWriMo mode. I’m not sure. I had the “It is okay to suck” mantra in my head today which kept me from going back and look up too much stuff, although I did learn some history about toilets this session. Speaking of toilets.
Word Count: 99,657
Yeah. We’re less than four hundred words away from one hundred thousand words. That seems amazing. It is also way too big. I foresee my edits being a huge hack and slash of the plot, when I get to them. Here are a few things I found kind of interesting about getting back to Everlasting after taking such a long time.
- I was a lot further behind in the plot than I thought I was. Entire sections I thought I had already written were still in the outline waiting to be written. This turned out to be a good thing as it meant I felt like I could “fix them” rather than having to “write them again”
- Outlines are so awesome. I am totally an outlining person. Being able to see what I had written before as an outline, and what I was supposed to write next, just let me jump right into it without bothering about re-reading too much or forgetting where I was going. Next time I write I’m going to try to fully outline the entire book before I get some serious writing down.
There was a Science Future article published last month that I didn’t announce
I think this is one of the better ones I’ve done so check it out and tell me what you think. I’m sadly not getting any real commentary on my articles which means I’m probably pushing the mediocre line. Not horrible but nothing awesome either. Or worse, nobody is actually reading it.
Free writing is not dead! It is still on hiatus however. With a little luck I’ll get it up and started again next week, appearing Mondays, Wednesday, and Fridays, basically on days that I’m not writing my novel or for Science Future.
Well I’m hard pressed to say there is a writing group. It is back to being just me and Daniel. The other writing group that had Ryan and Steph is no longer meeting that I can figure because Steph has a new obligation in her life. While I am still in contact with most everybody through the internet, it is very different from having writing sessions with other people. But I’m writing on my own now so perhaps I no longer need a group for that and should instead look for a critique group. I am not sure and don’t feel like putting for the effort to try to find one physically just yet. Maybe once I’ve done an edit of Everlasting or Werewolf Zombie Steampunk.
Session Word Count: 1,251
And we’re back to writing for Everlasting and man was it easy. I think NaNoWriMo reminded me some of the rules about writing a first draft. Just write and don’t worry about it. It also reminded me how much I love outlines because I still have plenty of scenes outlined for Everlasting which made it very easy just to jump back in. My word count before I decided to stop and write this was one thousand two hundred and fifty-one, which I think is the highest word count I have for everlasting over the last three months. So I’m rather proud of myself for getting back into it.
Free Write & Science Future
In other areas of writing, Free Write will be returning sometime in the new year probably in a less hectic schedule of two to three times a week rather than five times a week. So be looking forward to that. Also Science Future will be appearing sometime between now and the future, so keep an eye towards EscapePod for the release of that.
Draft Word Count: 97, 750 (Delta: +5,563)
So obviously I didn’t do some updating of word counts before I started NaNoWriMo as my delta is over five thousand. My apologies. Everlasting is still going well. I’m about to dig into the outline and see if I can match where I am with where I want to be when I finish this novel so I can finally be done with it. Ninety seven thousand words is far too big so I’ve obviously gone wrong somewhere but I’m not too worried. Once I have this done I’ll likely be taking a crack at editing Zombie Steampunk Werewolf or starting some small novellas before I come back to fix the problems with Everlasting.
Been awhile since I did an excerpt but I felt it was warranted. So here you go:
[spoiler show="Click to show excerpt"]
Marla stared at the wall of flesh that was writhing lengths away from her and her companions. Most of them seemed entranced by sky. It was exceptionally bright now and flaming debris was falling regularly, setting some of the walking dead alight. It bothered Marla considerably that the afflicted did not seem to care about their burning flesh but instead lifted their arms to the sky as if performing some kind of ritualistic worship of the airship that would more than likely crush them into a second death.
Not all the walkers were content to worship, however, as a few noticed the presence of the three women and began making their ways towards them with unnerving slowness. One was even on fire but Marla had to force herself not to stare. They needed a way out. She glanced to her companions. Olivia was entranced by the wall. She seemed to be whispering to herself perhaps some small comforting mantra. Leanne on the other hand seemed to have gone into some kind of shock, closing her eyes and bowing her head. She was breathing deeply as if trying to calm herself although it did not seem to be working.
They didn’t have time to backtrack. The airship was going to fall directly on their heads and Marla knew it. She glanced up again to confirm this when she realized the mass headed towards her was not the airship and it was considerably faster.
So my writing group has shrunk back down to effectively myself again with the occasional visit from my friend Daniel. I did intend to try to get in contact with other writers via NaNoWriMo but I was too busy to actually attend any of the events. I am somewhat connected to another small writing group that meets on Tuesdays but I still worry that writing alone is going to hurt my productivity some. It might be an unfounded worry since I am alone now and still writing.
Word Count: 21,255 
Total Word Count: 50,016 (Delta: +2,089)
So I totally took a hiatus from updating. I’m sorry. Things just got so overwhelming that I was barely meeting my word count and I didn’t feel like trying to write-up posts after spewing forth more and more words. I actually had to play catch up a lot during the last half because I got almost no writing done during the weekends, which always put me back. And of course I think the draft is a stinking pile of shit. But it is fifty thousand words worth of shit that maybe sometime into the future I’ll actually turn into a novel. Sometime far in the future.
Everybody seems rather close! Sithwith13 and Jeana_Beana isn’t far behind. A friend of mine who didn’t participate but set himself a goal of 25,000 words attained it the other day so congratulations to him too! To everybody else, keep at it! There’s only a few hours left but you can do it!
Next I start finishing up Everlasting. Hopefully this little break has help me get some of my juice back. Also I’ll be writing Science Future articles again over on Escape Pod. Free Writing might also start appearing again, although likely not as frequently as before. We shall see.
Word Count: 1,719 
Total Word Count: 28,761 (Delta: +2,089)
Writing was alright today. I wrote myself, kinda, out of my hole, but the last two or three scenes are complete crap. Mostly me writing through my character’s thoughts on the prior situation that should be summed up in one scene max. Not three. Not enough going on. Only one character. If this was first person it’d be alright and easier to write I think. But I am somewhat at a loss for lengthening out the mystery about what is going on. I’m wondering if I even should. I’m kinda feeling like the last action scene I wrote should open the book, not be twenty thousand words in.
Sithwith13 and I are keeping neck and neck! This has me so excited. I’m kinda worried for the rest of my buddies who haven’t been updating their counts. I”m not sure if that means they’re just not updating or if they aren’t writing. Come on guys! We’re half way there!
Big excerpt today! So what do the people of Fang Pass wear?[spoiler show="Click here to show the Excerpt"]
Deborah was less interested in the people she saw as what they were wearing. Most of the clothing worn by the people she passed were typical autumn affairs. One of the odd aspects of Fang Pass was the extremes its weather took, despite its regulairty. While The South was mostly a uniform temperate climate, north of the mountains weather seemed to takea turn for the extremes. Each day was either hot or cold, regulated primarily by the season, and each night could also be hot or cold, independenat of of the day but also regulated primarily by the season. Summer and winter were easily guessed. Summer days were more often searing hot to just hot while winter days were more often freezing to just cold. It was autumn and summer that made things so difficult with their shifting weather pattern.
This meant that clothing needed to be highly capable of configuring itself between hot or cold as needed. This meant that most clothing was designed to be highly configurable. Jackets had flaps that could be folded or unfolded, linings that could be removed, and fastenings for letting gloves dangle from the sleeves. A particular style of vest that allows one to attach sleeves was popular for a single season before everyone realized the bother and problem of finding matching colored sleeves. Pants and skirts followed similar designs, allowing a raising of the hemlines as needed to provide cooling or lowering to insulate. Removable pant legs were not uncommon and the latest vogue for skirts that had Rosa thrilled were layered contraptions which allowed one to tie up the layers at the waist to expose the under skirt in the heat.
Simple layers of clothing were still common but modularity had mostly won out. Smaller acruments often hung from a villager of fang pass, especially during village duties during the colder season. Belts and buckles worn across the chest, around the waist, or even the hip or arm, allowed one to expand their pockets for tools or supplies for their duty for the day, but take them off when they got too heavy or hot.
This meant that Deborah mostly saw light jackets hanging open and skirts pulled high but it being closer to summer than winter left the one item she really wanted to see, a cloak, in the closets. The figure the prior night had been wearing a cloak. She had surmised while preparing for the day that if the creature had indeed been a werewolf, it might have decided to try and enter the village as a human. It was not unknown. It was also suicide, with so many Clergy in attendance, all of them trained to know the signs of darkness claiming someone’s spirit and body. This creature, however, had already shown a willingness to enter the village proper despite the dangers, likely under the knowledge that her father and half the Clergy were off hunting its kind.
Word Count: 7,178 
Total Word Count: 27,051 (Delta: +2,046)
And I yet still succeed! Nay I am ahead! The last two days of writing have been somewhat torturous while writing, even though I get my word count only to realize that not much time has passed. I find this an odd situation. Writing is progressing. I don’t like what I’m actually writing. I desperately want to make more of an outline but I am on NaNo time and I still want to get more things done. I no longer have day time work obligations but now I need to catch up on the stuff I didn’t do last week. I honestly didn’t even realize I had already passed the half way point! Woo!
Heeee! I’m leading the charge among all my buddies for most words written. I’m only leading by around two thousand words but this makes me rather happy. Most of my friends are a little behind though, which worries me. Come on guys, we’re nearing the final stretch. You gotta get that word count up before the holiday (if you’re in America)!
[spoiler show="Click here to show excerpt"]
“The most likely scenerio is that someone broke into my bedroom. They wanted to steal something. The clawmarks could be from some kind of artifical appendage or climbing tool,” she mused as she began gathering her discarded clothing. With her ribs she wouldn’t be able to do any heavy lifting but she could at lest push her desk out of the middle of her room. “But we know something climbed the wall last night. Is it possible that something decided to break into my room?”
Deborah decided as she gathered up her books and writing supplies that this was not illogical. “If my memories are to be trusted, the creature ran away from me, even when it knew I was chasing it. It was either scared of me or it was trying to lead me to the village. It had no obvious motivation of the later, so perhaps the former. If it was a werewolf. It somehow knew my father was off hunting. It saw me in the forrest. It decided to steal into the village to break into the house.”
Word Count: 5,601 
Total Word Count: 19,873 (Delta: +1,536)
Sorry sorry! Work has been so hectic that I’ve really only given myself just enough time to get my word each day before rushing off to finish it. Hence no real update post. You’re getting an abbreviated one right now as I’m about to go have some fun for the first time in about a week, assuming you don’t count NaNoWriMo as fun. Heh.
Writing is going okay. I know it has problems. But I’m allowed to suck. The last two days were a breeze. Today wasn’t too bad. I find I write description really really quickly. Exposition a little less so. Dialog and action I slow down considerably. I seem to be almost the exact opposite of all the other writers I know, who can churn out dialog like they were writing plays.
Still I’ve made my word count each day, despite excessive working. I’m totally hanging on to my “I am writer!” title.
Speaking of writers, everybody seems to be doing a great job on my list. A few people are a little behind here and there but nothing they can’t catch up on this weekend. Sithwith13 has once again retaken her lead according to the website but I also know sigmad hasn’t been updating and is actually supposedly a day ahead. I wouldn’t bet on him too quickly however as I also know that the game Skyrim is going to kill off that lead, more than likely tonight.
It’s been awhile so here is an extra long excerpt. Reminder this is completely unedited. See how bad raw writing can be!
[spoiler show="Click to read"]
They arrived just in time for the pyre and the fire was just begin stoked to it’s full brightness. A small crowd had gathered but far more than Deborah had been expecting. When a person died, it was well known that what had made the person a person had somehow passed on to become apart of the Spirit. This was proven mostly by the living dead, who rose and attacked the living indiscrimently, be they strangers or loved ones of the prior body’s aquatinence. This was why all bodies were desposed of quickly as possible in a pyre. Loved ones and friends were encouraged to attend and share in the celebration of the dead one’s life and, if the gatherer was particularly devote, their joining with the Spirit.
Fang Pass was a small village. Everybody was at least some kind of an aquatinence if they stayed longer than a week. So when someone died, more often than not the entire village showed up to the pyre. Last night had been an exception, since the clergy and militia had been on duty, and Deborah herself had been in quarentine. So the crowd was made up mostly of people who couldn’t have attended the pyre of the servitor the prior night. Deborah guessed, however, that there were more than that. Some looking to pay their respects again, or perhaps just find something to help lighten their mood.
Since there was no body for a second pyre, small effigies were to be created by the attenddees. Traditionally this would take the form of a twig doll wrapped with the gather’s own hair but that had given way to more metaphorical effigies. Fang Pass in particularly perfered to burn symbols. Words or images written on paper to the deceased or a small personal item, that burned, that reminded the burner of the one who had died.
Word Count: 1,667 
Total Word Count: 3,541 (Delta: +207)
So writing was a little easier today. I was just continuing the scene from yesterday. I didn’t find time to work on more outline, which is troubling, but I did have an idea of what to do next. So I’m not fumbling too much. Writing group isn’t as large as it was last year, with only two of us showing up physically, but we’re keeping each other going. Internet members are always hard to goad on, sadly.
A quick shout out to jagmunoz, laura_williams, and sithwitch13 for keeping up their word count on the NaNoWriMo webpage. I also have it on good authority that sigmad is only a few hundred words behind. A special not to sithwitch13 who has a whopping 5,441 words. Way to go and stop making the rest of us look like slackers! ;)
[spoiler show="Click for Excerpt"]Zombies were not really all that dangerous individually even when they were fresh and they only got worse the more they ripened. The group that was covering on them was small compared to the hordes that used to throw themselves at the walls and most of them looked like they had been dead a long time. A zombie’s main advantage was that it took a large amount of effort to kill a single zombie. They seemed immune to pain and were unfatiguable. So while one person took the time to kill a single zombie, several more could easily just shamble up next to them and lunge. The second advantage a zombie had was that they were strong. One a zombie had a grip on someone it was often easier to cut off the zombie’s hand than to pry yourself away. The best tactics when taking on a zombie horde was to skirmish. Move in and attack and then move away. Keep moving so they have to follow you, attack when they weren’t prepared to lunge. This worked best in teams so each person didn’t have to worry about being ambushed.[/spoiler]
Word Count: 1,874 
Total Word Count: 1,874 (Delta: +207)
(For the uninitiated, Word Count is how much I’ve written since my last update and the number in brackets is how many days it has been since my last update. Total Word Count is how many words are in my novel. Delta is how many words /should/ be in my novel by now, working off the formula of (Total Word Count – (1667*Day of the Month))
And so the insanity begins! Took me two and a half hours to get that written. I’m rusty. Also for account keeping I’m changing the working title I announced in an earlier post from Zombie Steampunk Werewolf to Werewolf Zombie Steampunk (or WZS) just for accounting purposes.
I don’t have the outline that I had for Zombie Steampunk/Everlasting, so I am starting out really rough this year. I don’t have the time to really write an outline tonight, so I might have to take a lot of extra time tomorrow and do some more fleshing out. Nothing like being under the gun! The Great Swampy Middle is going to kick my butt I’m almost sure of it.
Also Free Writes will be suspended for the length of NaNoWriMo. My apologies. I’ll try to write excerpts as much as possible so you have something vaguely entertaining to read.
Nobody on my NaNo buddy list has updated their word counts so nothing to report there.
I am officially announcing my candidacy for National Novel Writing Month 2011. May everybody please have mercy on my brain.
I officially won NaNoWriMo 2010 last year. One of my friends then told me was the prize was that you didn’t have to do the following year. Some of you may remember that last year’s novel was the start of Everlasting, then called Zombie Steampunk novel, which still isn’t finished. And while I’m likely breaking a rule by participating in NaNoWriMo and writing something else that is not Everlasting before Everlasting is completed, I am hoping that writing something else, like my Free Writes, will help me find the strength to finish Everlasting’s first draft, which is well over 100,000 words and nowhere near done, which means something is wrong but that something can’t be fixed till I write the damn ending.
But enough about Everlasting. I will be participating in NaNoWriMo starting November first. For the uninitiated, NaNoWriMo is a month where in writers are challenged to write 50,000 words of a novel in thirty-one days, which equates to about 1667 words per day, give or take. This is a rather break neck pace for most writers who are not professionalism, have day time jobs, and like to do other things with their lives. It is a challenge hosted at http://NaNoWriMo.org that anyone can participate in. You’ll find me there under the user name Nojh (once the website is up and fully functional). Feel free to make me one of your writing buddies so we can keep track of each other’s word counts and try to motivate each other. NaNoWriMo organizes local events with coordinators in order to help people meet this challenge which I encourage you to try out because it turns out to be rather fun and very motivational.
NaNoWriMo usually requires some preparation. My first year back in 2009, I decided to start the day before NaNoWriMo began and while I eventually wrote somewhere around 36,000 words, none of it was actually a novel but instead a world bible for a novel. In October of 2010, after having not touched said piece of work for years, I decided to begin again and actually did some pre-planning and started writing the novel, and won NaNoWriMo. This year I’ve started planning even early (19 days!) and I’ve recently decided on a plot for my new novel. Let me give you a brief overview. (continue reading…)