Saturday, December 27, 2014

WIP Marathon December Update

Things I'm glad I did in 2014:

Most of the things I did in 2014 were little things--progress, but not huge leaps. It's hard to pick things out individually. I continued to put together an organized draft of the WIP and wrote a bunch of new scenes, many of which will have to be rewritten. I continued a very productive and encouraging CP relationship with Ifeoma. I became a lot closer to RL friends. I am surviving med school. My roommate brought her cat to live with us and I learned to cook some new things. I read a handful of books I really liked and a lot of books I couldn't really get into.

In 2015, I'd love to:

-Finish and revise the WIP
-Start querying this summer or fall
-Start writing Book 2 (not gonna lie, the main reason I want to publish Book 1 is that it gives me an excuse to write Book 2)
-Read books I'm excited about

***

Last check-in: Decided to put chapter 25 on hiatus (85,931 words)

Currently: Found an old version of a chapter 25 scene (not the one I was having trouble with). It will need revisions, but it will help a lot in writing the new version. Wrote chapter 26 (then added some edit notes). Revised chapter 27. Revised the first scene of chapter 28, then came up with am editing plan for the second scene. Revised the first scene of chapter 29 and wrote the second scene. Revised chapters 30. Revised chapter 31, then added some edit notes for further scenes. Started writing new scenes for chapter 32.

Current word count = 105,580 words

WIP issues this month:

As you can see from above, a lot of these scenes have already been written, which was why I was able to make such good progress. I'm finally on Part Three, which is where the plot really takes off.

One of the biggest issues right now is the word count. I have about ten more chapters to write, and it's already over 100,000 words. The worst part is that I keep on getting more ideas for scenes to write. (Like "My protagonist should take a more active role. I'll write a scene where she does that." or "This secondary character's family and backstory is completely underexplored and probably not very believable. I should fix that.") I haven't yet written either of the scenes in question, but I strongly intend to do so.

I've also been trying to think of ways to cut down or replace earlier scenes, so that I can get maximal use out of my word count.

Things I learned in writing this month:

1. Do you ever have that problem where you don't want your character to know something right away, so you figure out 100 different ways to delay an important conversation? This can work, but sometimes it just makes more sense for them to sit down and have the conversation. See where it goes.

2. A lack of female characters is always a choice

3. I had a really frustrating conversation with a friend about book piracy. I'm not going to get into the discussion because it makes me really angry, but I basically had to explain to him that no, authors do not benefit from illegal downloading. (Beth Revis had some really good things to say about this.) If you can't afford a book, go to the library. If you think the mainstream publishing industry is corrupt and you don't want to support it, there are a million indie authors and small publishers you could support instead. If you illegally download a book, the only person you are supporting is the lazy fuck who is earning advertising dollars on other people's hard work. (And don't even get me started on people who illegally download self-published books. Leigh Ann Kopans once tweeted something along the lines of "Guys, my book is cheaper than a latte.")

What distracted me this month:

An exam, a weekend retreat with some friends, spending time with friends and family in St. Louis.

Books this month:

-completed:
   *hangs head in shame*
-started:
   The Lowlands (audio)
-still reading:
   Arclight (I'm only 30 pages away from the end)
   The Twistrose Key

Goal for next month: Finish the first draft

Saturday, December 13, 2014

2015 Books

I've been having trouble getting into books these last few months, and today it finally occurred to me that the problem might not be me--maybe it's the books. I looked over my list of 2014 books, and realized that out of all 28 books I read, there were only five that I loved. (The Bitter Kingdom, Vicious, The Night Circus, Born Wicked, and an unpublished WIP I critiqued) There were a few others that I liked, but when it comes to books, I want to get excited about them.

So this is what I'm going to do. In the next month, I'm going to finish Arclight and The Twistrose Key. Then, in 2015, I'm going to read books I'm excited about. Here is my list:

Books I already own:

SOME GIRLS ARE - finished!
CHARM AND STRANGE - finished!
DARK PLACES - finished!
THE DIRTY STREETS OF HEAVEN - finished!
SORROW'S KNOT - finished!
FEED

Books to buy/obtain from library:

WE WERE LIARS - finished!
THE ARCHIVED - changed to A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC, b/c it sounds awesome - finished!
BLUE LILY, LILY BLUE - finished!
STAR CURSED - finished!
POINTE - finished!
PANTOMIME - finished!
OTHERBOUND - finished!
SERAPHINA - finished!
WILD AWAKE - finished!
IN THE SHADOW OF BLACKBIRDS - finished! (audio)
THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE - finished! (audio)
FALLING INTO PLACE - bought!
FIENDISH
ETA: THE GIRL WHO NAVIGATED FAIRYLAND IN A SHIP OF HER OWN MAKING  - bought!

Books that are coming out in 2015:

UNDER A PAINTED SKY - finished!
PLEASE DON'T TELL - coming out in 2016
MADE YOU UP - finished!
NONE OF THE ABOVE
WATCH THE SKY
BLACK DOVE, WHITE RAVEN - currently reading
ETA: WALK ON EARTH A STRANGER - bought!

Also, I'm going to add a couple of books that are receiving major hype that I can use for Summary Reactions posts:

AN EMBER IN THE ASHES - finished!
RED QUEEN - finished!

That's 28 books, so I'm confident I can get finish them all in a year and hopefully still have room for other books.

Edit: Apparently, some of my friends are doing a book/movie club, so I get to add more to the list.

Book Club 2015:

THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES - finished!

Edit: Other books I've decided to read.

Other Books:

THE LOWLANDS (audiobook) - finished!
GONE GIRL (so I can read blog posts about it without being spoiled) - DNF (had to return to library)
THE CASUAL VACANCY (audiobook) - DNF (boring)
A PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY (audiobook) - finished!
THE SECOND MANGO - Shira Glassman - finished!
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