Monthly #Writing Update: June 2016

I’m planning to enter next month. Are you?

Word Count: 5,487 words

Unless I write any more or do any more planning, I think I can call that my final word count for the month. It hasn’t been the easiest of months as noted in my other updates and, to be fair, it’s been 5,000 words of not much really.

The month started with my FMC getting up, dressed and going to the train station to start at Halowin, with some nervousness and apprehension. Her familiar revealed he is snobbish and possibly has a dark personality to match hers, after referring to her family as worms. Her step/non-dad meanwhile, after having it pointed out that everyone will know who she is before long, told her to keep her head down as he doesn’t want anyone connecting her to his cabal(a band of dark magic users). Naturally, my FMC plans to make herself known, for all the right reasons but obviously, that is asking for trouble. She has also discovered her grandfather’s work partner has a wife and twin sons, one of whom is her love interest. His brother met his when they boarded the train. An argument with another pupil has shown that my FMC has a strong sense of justice when she defended a disabled pupil as well as having an attitude to match.

When you compare that to other month’s, that’s a few hours of story time in a few thousand words. Very little but it does feel right for now. I haven’t written everyday this month and I have spent the last few days planning (unsuccessfully) for next month. It has made me realise though that taking a break and working on a different project for the next month might be what I, and the story, needs: the chance to go back to it with fresh eyes.

As for what I am going to write next month, that’s all up in the air really. As stated above, planning has been unsuccessful. Bitten by two plot bunnies, I tried planning and working one idea into something coherent whilst the other remains illusive as it pertains to another idea that still needs to time to develop I feel before I can really give it a go. Neither I feel is ready to be written or even attempting to and since I need a break from the current story, it left me facing a month of pantsing it. (To those unfamiliar with that term, “pantsing” means going into the month with no plan, no plot, no character, no nothing and just writing).

Me, myself and I also know that is a bad idea as even I need some sort of plan or plot to at least know which story points I need to be working towards to make sure the story is coherent and has a chance of even being bullet pointed later if need be for later reviewing. That might be why my mind today gave me the idea of working on a story that I have done before for NaNoWriMo (November 2012), done some reworking of before but wondering now if maybe I should do the overhaul for Camp next month. I suppose I should just wait for midnight tonight, open a new document and see what I write.

So how was the last month of writing for you? Good? Bad? Discovered something new? If you are entering Camp NaNoWriMo next month, are you a planner ready for the off or a pantser who is just going to sit and write? Perhaps you are like me and have to know certain beats of the story before starting. Let me know down below if you want. I don’t bite! Honest!

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#Writing Update

3278e-writerWord Count: 3,324 words

Just under 2,000 of those words was in one day. In the story, still exposition, revealing the world, the most popular game for witches and a broomstick lesson but there are three things that have mainly dominated this week’s writing.

The first, looking back, is that my FMC is finding herself being questioned by others and questioning herself why she has chosen and begged for a place at a rival school to her family’s dark magic school. I’m not sure why she is doing that really as she knows why (wants to do something different to her family) but I can’t help feeling it is going to be important, especially after some rethinking and planning of the story and the character’s journey. It’s not a bad feeling. In fact, it is a very good feeling.

The second is the revelation of my MMC’s struggles in his classes. I haven’t really written much with him for a while, mostly because the school is split into boys and girls and I am having a go at using third person limited. The struggles revelation feels as if it is going to be vitally important. I am not sure why but again, it is a good feeling.

Ah, the wonders of pantsing and having an outline that is rather loose in my mind. Especially when that outline is limited to about one years worth in story time of plot. Who knows? It might become a little Malory Towers in its focus.

The third thing that has happened is that my FMC’s potential love interest has revealed that they are gender fluid. To anyone who has never heard of the term, it describes someone who doesn’t feel like their assigned gender all the time. This is different to being transsexual. In this case, the love interest is male. They will have periods of time where they feel male so act male but will also have times where they feel female so will act and be female for that time. I have known this since I started writing the story pretty much however I have been nervous about doing it as it is the first time I have written a character like this. How successful it is so far and will be, I don’t know. All I know is that this is right for the character and will cause conflict between them and their family as well as at school, as it is segregated between male and female with normal expectations of those genders in place and reinforced by lessons such as etiquette. I am looking forward to seeing how this goes.

I have already mentioned some rethinking and replanning has happened. This is resulting from a realisation that I needed to age the characters up so a rethink of the structure of the school and the education system in place in this world became necessary. It took me a while to figure it out yesterday at a write in, where I ended up voicing stuff out loud as well as sketching and drawing things in mid-air to help me visualise it. This is part of the value of having writing friends and going to write in’s and maybe writing groups too. You can say and do things with fewer or no strange looks whatsoever. This restructuring will definitely work better I feel and allow me a bit more room to move when writing character’s actions and dialogue. Perhaps it also explains why my FMC has become so much more introverted than normal.

Aside from all this with my Camp story, I have begun the task of doing some research and planning for November. I suspect my time may become limited so I am trying to get a little ahead to compensate. This research has included the North Pole and the Arctic Circle.

Plans for next week? Write my Camp story, research for November and trying to remember to post my wc’s on Twitter. I keep forgetting!