2019 Novel-Writing Challenge, Week 8

I got back into the swing of things, writing 555 words each night this week, and ended the week with 34,923 words!

The process of producing those 555 words feels constipated these days. I’m working a lot more slowly, procrastinating a lot more, and seeing more drops of blood on the forehead, so to speak. I’ve heard that the middle part of a novel can feel like a bit of a slog. I just need to keep going.

This week, I spent most of my time fleshing out the structure and details of an important chapter. It’s a turning point in the plot for several characters. I was really tired during my first go at a particular scene, and wound up basically putting my outline notes into prose. The result was a rather crappy piece of work, making me cringe as I read it back over. The next day, I’d had time to think about what was missing, and started filling in the blanks, adding color where there was previously white space. Now, I have something that’s workable, helps with character development, and moves the plot along.

I feel like I still haven’t really stumbled across a writing process that’s foolproof for me. Because I’m tackling this project in the evenings, when I’m exhausted and scrambling to get to bed on time, I only really have so much time to play around with my process vs. doing the actual writing. I’d been hoping to do both during this project, but maybe for this particular draft, I’ll be focusing more on forming the actual habit of writing every day.

On that note, I found that my writing habits have changed, over the past month, in two significant ways:

  • I’ve found myself writing at night a lot more. My boyfriend recently reminded me that I’d said, earlier on, that I preferred to write in the morning. These days, in the morning, I prefer my sleep. I also like to make sure I have everything done, all my other obligations taken care of, so my mind is freed and at relative ease to dream and write.
  • Potentially bad habit alert: I’ve been writing from my room more.

I don’t like to use my room for activities other than sleeping, because I want my mind and body to associate my room with sleep. Since I’m prone to insomnia, priming myself is really important. But it’s been so dark and cold outside lately that it’s hard to make myself go back out in the evenings to write. That said, it may be worth it: I believe I’m more productive when I write from my favorite coffeeshop.

Maybe that’s a habit I’ll try to start re-forming in the next week.


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