I’m in the middle of my WIP. And this is always where things get sticky. Somewhere around the 25,000 word mark (currently 23), I slow down.
I wrote my first six chapters in two weeks (granted, I was rewriting, so I did get to use some words from the original version, although not many). Then I hit chapter seven at the beginning of this week and this is what happens.
I open the document.
I stare at it.
I open twitter.
I read blogs.
Check Eharlequin message boards.
Go back to chapter seven. Stare at it. Maybe right a sentence.
You get the picture. I have in my mind exactly what I want to happen the rest of the book. I have “written” in my mind numerous scenes throughout the rest of the book. I know where I’m going, I know why my characters are doing what they’re doing, but… I’m stuck.
I’ve come to realize in this WIP that this always happens to me. I guess, in a weird way, it’s part of my process. Maybe my mind needs to slow down, to really work out the end, whatever. I just need to push myself over the mental block. Once I get past that midpoint, I can usually find my speed again and polish off the last few chapters at a decent pace.
Today, I really focused on getting some words down. I let myself skip around in the chapter a little bit and then go back and fill in places (all within the chapter though). I probably wrote about 800 words, which is more than I’ve written all week. So, hopefully I can finish up this chapter tomorrow and get over that hump.
(FWIW, I write my blog posts most times in advance, so this was actually written last week, pre-NaNo. First day of NaNo, I managed to belt out 4,500 words!)
2 thoughts on “The Middle”
That pattern sounds so familiar! I think what stalls me is the fear that I won’t do justice to the story in my head…or maybe it’s that my fingers can’t type as fast as the ideas pop in my head. My problem is that I write linearly, so I can’t hop around easily (although I do jot notes for ideas that come later on). Sometimes jotting down where the story is headed in a very brief (and I do mean brief bc I’m not a hard core plotter) outline helps. I also print out the chapter and work on it like a teacher grading a paper. The media switch helps me.
BTW, congratulations on having your first page picked for a critique over at harlequin! I recognized the passage from when you posted it here. Love it. Great job and feedback!
It’s always interesting to see how other’s work because I know, for me, my process is always evolving and changing. I haven’t found that “perfect” stride yet, but writing about it and discussing helps.
I used to do the print out too, but currently have a broken printer so I have adapted to being all computer, but especially when editing having a hard copy can really help.
Thanks for the congrats. I’ll be posting about it tomorrow, but I was so excited to see my chapter & the comments from the editor!