Of Changes, Achieving Goals and Beating Procrastination.

Hello to you, Dear Reader.

Firstly, my apologies if you popped in to read my blog yesterday. I have decided I want to finish the manuscript for The Department of Curiosities by October – at the latest. This means I have to knuckle down and work more my manuscript. To achieve this goal, I had to make some hard decisions.

This leads to my second apology. I can only write so many words in a day, or a week. To achieve my writing goals, I need to write more of my story; this will mean less words for my blog. At this stage, I am planning to  provide you with two blog posts a week. I will be working around my day job, so this will most likely be a Wednesday/Thursday and Saturday/Sunday.

After a a few days of collecting my thoughts together, I had reached that point where I needed to start work on chapter 5. I faced yet another blank page. I choked. I wrote a couple of sentences, crossed them out and then rewrote them – almost word for word.

I find a blank page a very scary thing. Since the last time I wrote on the problem of blank pages and scene changes, I have read  actively on the subject. I then engaged anti-procrastination tactics.

  1. I spent a day creating a quick plot outline, from the many ideas that were bouncing around in my brain.
  2. Next I tried to order them in a more logical timeline (pushing some into chapter 6)
  3. I listed the clues and character background I wanted (or needed) to reveal in this chapter.
  4. I penciled notes into previous chapters, to give hints on some of the upcoming clues and characters, so they did not just plop in out of nowhere.
  5. I took a long shower . This usually ends up with lots of ideas and sentences spilling out of my head. (I really need to find a waterproof notebook or recording device.)
  6. Concentrated on creating a specific character before he began walking and talking in chapter 5

I managed only 550 words, so brought out the big guns.

7. I went to bed to get some sleep. Words started tormenting me. Within 20 minutes I was grabbing the notebook, I keep my the bedside table, and was scribbling down a few pages of ideas.  Any ideas… whatever came to me.

Today, I managed to add 1400 words to my tally on the previous day – though not on chapter 5. I had been concentrating on the character of the Big Bad – more commonly known as the antagonist.  I was resisting the urge to make him a short, snivelly and bald cliche.  In the end I wrote both his first and  final scenes in the story.

Having now filled out his character, weaknesses, background and motives, I am ready to plough on with chapter 5.

Manuscript Word Progress: 24% completed to at least first draft!

Revised Words: 
Total Words:  
At 1st draft only:

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