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wshaffer
Writing milestone 
10th-Oct-2011 11:10 am
talent, pencil
So, I've just passed 100 long-hand pages written in the current novel-in-progress, a.k.a Summoner (serious working title), a.k.a How I Went to Elf Camp and Didn't Get Laid (snarky working title). That probably works out to roughly 20,000 words. What particularly pleases me is that I've made it this far without getting bored or completely running out of plot ideas, which is what has happened at about 10,000 to 15,000 words in to every previous novel I've attempted, including a previous incarnation of Summoner.

I'm not sure if I've matured as a writer, or if I've just developed more sheer bloody-minded determination. Or if there's a difference.

My coworkers have started to notice my habit of using my lunch breaks to work on my novel. One of them is now writing poetry on her lunch breaks. This is kind of awesome.

Also, I need to make more time to type up my drafts. I've got maybe 300 words of this transcribed to a text file. I really shouldn't wait until I've drafted the whole darn thing to type the rest.

Also, I suck at names. 20,000 words in, two significant characters appear in the text only as "[Elf Dude]" and "[Bad Elf]".
Comments 
10th-Oct-2011 06:22 pm (UTC)
I'm wildly applauding you! And how cool that you've influenced others in such a neat way. Your workplace sounds extra fabulous. :)

It's funny; names are one of the few areas I feel very confident in! If you ever want suggestions and/or feedback in other respects, I'd be more than happy to help. (Although that typing job does sound a bit monumental.)
10th-Oct-2011 08:31 pm (UTC)
It will probably be some time before any of this is ready to show to readers, but when I do get it to that happy state, I'd love your feedback.

The typing thing is daunting, but it also does double-duty as my first revision pass. (Nothing gets you to cut needless cruft like the knowledge that if you just drop that useless paragraph, you won't have to type it.)
10th-Oct-2011 08:07 pm (UTC)
I confess that as late as last week there was a section of The True Tale that said "[GAME CRAP HERE]."
10th-Oct-2011 08:43 pm (UTC)
I do that kind of thing a lot with description or action. I think this is the first time I've gotten this far into a draft while having placeholders for character names.

It doesn't help that every time I write "[Bad Elf]", my protagonist wants to pipe up with something like, "Bad Elf! No lembas for you!"

Actually, I don't know if you've run into similar issues with any of your contemporary fantasy - I keep running up against the fact that my protagonists are the kinds of kids who have read tons of fantasy novels and played role-playing games and stuff like that, and keep trying to apply that to their own experiences in suddenly having to deal with actual elves. Which is great, except for the part where they keep wanting to make Lord of the Rings in-jokes. As a writer, I feel that my characters would definitely do that; as a reader, I can't imagine it not throwing me out of the story.
10th-Oct-2011 09:20 pm (UTC)
Really? It throws me out of the story more when you have a whole heap of nerds and none of them make LotR jokes.

In The True Tale of Carter Hall, I have contemporary characters who are not really nerds, but Carter does, when he finds out what's going down with Tam, go to the video store and get the fantasy movies he can find, in case they're of any use.
11th-Oct-2011 01:09 am (UTC)
In The True Tale of Carter Hall, I have contemporary characters who are not really nerds, but Carter does, when he finds out what's going down with Tam, go to the video store and get the fantasy movies he can find, in case they're of any use.

I love stuff like that - it just makes sense that the characters would use whatever reference material they had available to them.

The LotR jokes just seem really really in-jokey, though. Although maybe the real problem is that they're not very funny. They're not very funny in what I think is a totally plausible way for a gaggle of 15-year-olds, but still...

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