Friday, August 15, 2008

Frickin' Brackin' ARGH!

So that's a slight exaggeration. But it is frustrating.

I've been slaving away at my work in progress, trying very hard to get it fully drafted by the end of this week. It's been a 12-week goal of mine to get it done, and I'm so close . . .

The goal isn't a random one. It's pretty important I get the book done soon, because of certain scheduling difficulties and plans I have for getting it critiqued by trusted people and getting it back and revised and submitted and . . . you get the idea.

Much of that stems from the fact that I won't be able to write for much of September, so time is of the essence here. (I'll explain why soon. It's a totally rockin' cool reason why I won't be working then. I'll blog all about it afterward. Let's just say it deserves a big huge "WOOHOO!")

Here's the deal: I have five women who are all integral to the book. Each one faces her own issue. Their problems intertwine, and the women help one another. It's been neat to see how they get along and work things out among them.

But, um, problem. Part of the story just refused to come together properly. One character's arc was misbehaving in the worst way, and I couldn't figure out how to knock the puppy back into submission. It's been bugging me for weeks. My poor husband has gotten an earful of me whining about it. I've been trying to ignore it for weeks so I could get work done on other areas of the story.

So . . . if you haven't noticed, the week and my 12-week goal end, oh, TOMORROW. And as of today, I still had no resolution for my poor character, J.

I spent much of today trying to figure her story out. Right around 6:30 this evening, the answer came to me. It's an easy fix, as fixes go. And it'll totally do the job.

Basically, I was trying to do too much with her in this book. Two scenes of hers really belong in a sequel, if I ever write one. So out they'll go. Cut. Delete. G'bye.

Yeah. That's 2,318 words that are no longer in the story. (Each and every one of them counts, people, yes, even the 18.)

The word count on my sidebar doesn't reflect the cut, however. I'm still counting the grand total of words I've written for the whole book. Because it makes me feel better. And because I'm not brave like some people who have folders to hold their cuts. (Hi, Josi!) The final count will be 2,318 words below whatever the rest ends up being.

2,318 is a lot of words. They represent two scenes I really, really liked and worked hard on. My goal wasn't just to get it drafted, but to write 60,000 words over the 12 weeks. If I delete those words wholesale, I'm a couple thousand (and 318) words in the red. If I leave them in my wordcount, I technically make my goal even though the story isn't quite done.

So here's the deal: I won't get too annoyed about hacking them out if everyone promises to buy this book in droves so there'll be enough demand for a sequel and I can use them later. (This is a contemporary book I'm working on, not my upcoming historical . . . wanna make sure everyone knows what they're promising.)

Deal?

Good. Now I can go kick something and feel better.

7 comments:

Tirzah said...

I'm sorry! I hope it can fit in later or in a sequel! BTW, I love your "curse" words!

Heffalump said...

I've never even completed any of the books I started writing, so you are doing way better than I could, even cutting out 2,318 words.
I wonder how long it will take for Frickin' Brackin' to get into the urban dictionary. Brillig would be so proud...

Alison Wonderland said...

You just delete them?! Just like that! Why not take a knife to your kids' throats too?! Alright maybe I'm being a tad dramatic (the first time EVER, I promise) but I CAN NOT do that.
I paste them onto another document. But then when I shut down and the computer asks me if I want to save the document I say no. But at least I don' have to look them in the eye while killing them.

Anna Maria Junus said...

Of course you could always just let that character misbehave, because in real life people don't behave the way their supposed to anyway. ;-)

Annette Lyon said...

Alison, No WAY would I just delete them I'll save them and put them into another file for later (Although even that it still stings).

Tirzah, Like Heffalump said, I didn't make up "frickin' brackin'" (T'was Brillig did--you can find her on my sidebar). But it's just SO fitting sometimes . . .

Anna Maria, She wasn't misbehaving, exactly--I'll still use her scenes, I think (I hope!) in that sequel. It was just too much story for this plot to handle. In a weird way, though, I feel like I'll have a secret my readers won't--what's really going on in her head . . . :)

Brillig said...

1. You said "frickin' brackin'" and for that, I love you.

2. MUST know what's going on in September!!!! But I'll throw in a free "woohoo" here, because you said it merited one.

3. Promise.

4. Oooh! Kick ME! Kick ME! That would give me a great story to blog about...

:-D

Love you, dear. I know it will come together.

The Motherboard said...

Woot-Woo! Can't wait to hear your exciting news!

I love that you said Frickin' brackin' That made my day!

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