Tonight, tallying up the word-counts of all the documents that I’m counting as adding up to the total word-count of my shitty YA werewolf novel – so not including previous drafts of chapters and alternative versions – I have reached 28111 words. I’m freaking out a little because I’m shooting for 80k, but also happy because I’m keeping up momentum. I have definitely dropped off from my first two weeks of amazing progress, though to be fair I was writing massive essays over the past two weeks, but altogether this is still pretty awesome. I think I’m right on the edge of overthinking things, and it’s part of what’s making me write so much: I had a neat idea and I’m trying to write it into being. I like the idea. But it’s taking a while to come to fruition, and I wanted this story to be fast-paced. I will try to get back up to speed tomorrow, to return to whatever it was that made me go really fast during those first two weeks, though I think it’s just not caring what I write so long as it’s what I want to write, and I guess that should include laborious plodding plot-related stuff. If that’s what I want to write, then it actually goes against my entire philosophy that’s made this project work as well as it has up to this point to make myself to something else.
I guess I just have a lot of ideas that I want to use – and that all of them work together, as far as I can tell thus far – and I don’t think I can fit them all in within 80k words.
But, as I’ve learnt from writing Tallulah, trying to stick to any kind of word-count during a first draft is a ridiculous and, more importantly, counter-productive exercise. The best you can do – and it does help – is to mark milestones as you meet them, whatever those milestones are. I’m going in blocs of 20k words, like I did with Tallulah, and that was a book that had a 112k-word first draft that got whittled down to a 66k-word revision, which was then bulked up to a 88k-word second draft. So in the long-run, 80k words is probably a very reasonable goal for this project. Just not the here-and-now. In the here-and-now I have a lot of ideas and I’m going to try and write out all of them. Guess I’ll see how it goes.
Guess I’ll also see if I have time/energy/desire to keep writing this while I’m in Malaysia for 11 days; it’s my first time out of the country or on a plane and I am not yet freaking out but I can feel it building up. I feel like I’m going to have a panic attack or something the night before. I guess I’ll find that out, too.
In the meantime: more werewolves, as fast as possible, seems like a good solution to everything.