Kids are still on summer holiday through the beginning of Feb so, like all good Kiwis, I don't take January too seriously.
But, I do have a few goals: The Dragon Slayer's Daughter off to the copy editor.
Finish the three short stories I was supposed to have finished on the beach before Christmas (I tried, honest! It's just the snorkelling was so good, and the water so cool and inviting...)
Interesting to see others going for the 500 word minimum daily target. It revolutionised my writing life although I now have more than enough first drafts to knock into shape so that I now I have to finish off my WIP then move onto the real graft. But 500 words a day on a first draft is bloody good fun. Sometimes it flows, other times it stutters but the beauty of it is that I will be the only one reading it in that form so none of the usual rules matter. That is a real freedom.
Had upped my usual 2000 words a day to 3000 for the current project, but that target is not always being met (but nearly!). Was going great guns until about mid way through the second act, when I suddenly realised I wasn't certain how a large number of things came together, precisely. Gone back to the (literal) drawing board to plot thing out for a day or two, but will then soldier on!
Did 700 words yesterday and noticed that a subplot might overtake the main plot. First draft muddles! Woke up just before dawn and a shape began emerging, a tension between two characters. The narrator's still more wobble than voice, but the characters interest me. I have a plot and some idea what might happen at various points, but the relationships are what holds the story together so far. I do try to sleep on various possibilities and see what my Unconscious has come up with during the night.
And I am building a word glossary that helps me get tone and themes right: gesso, needlepoint, crewelwork, bitter disappointment, visceral, enlarge, snappish, sour old envy, unheimlich/uncanny, the man who hated shadows, palette knife, rubbed bare, vacant, illocality.
Mine is to try to get bookings for World Book Day school visits in March to promote my fantasy trilogy, find an agent for 4th book and start work on another (currently have 3 different ideas from a younger children's book to a tongue in cheek murder mystery). Oh, and feed my family and walk the dog...
Write at least one quarter of my fifth novel, about 20,000 words, freeing myself of researching facts to simply get words down on the page. Also, decide which writing competitions to enter this year. Oh, and remember to file my online self-employed tax statement before the deadline at the end of January...as most of the figures I type are 0, this is surprisingly easy!