18 November 2022 — Q4 Challenge: Day 34

by | Nov 18, 2022 | 2022 Writing Challenge, Writing | 0 comments

Hello, everyone!

I hope the days have been treating you well.

The past few days, I’ve been slipping a little bit on the ‘people’ side of these posts, and while I may not always say so, I do hope the days treat you as well as possible. Yes… I have–in the past–described myself as a poorly socialized writer. But I am working on correcting that.

With this post, I am now–once again–current with my challenge progress. Today was a good day for writing. Part of me wanted to push the last fifteen minutes to get the green box on writing time, too, but the last paragraph of Chapter 17 for The Shepherd felt forced enough as it was.

With today’s writing, The Fall of Skullkeep is only twelve (12) chapters away from my rough target chapter count and a hair over 35,000 words away from my rough target word count for a Drakmoor book. My intent is to write one chapter per day and finish the first draft of Skullkeep on the last day of the month.

The Shepherd is the Sci-Fi story and series I started on Mom’s birthday, and I have to admit that it feels good to have a counterpoint to Skullkeep for writing. And it feels even better that the counterpoint is a Sci-Fi story. As of today’s writing, it has eighteen chapters to reach the rough number of Chapters I want and 40,483 words for the rough target word count.

I call all my targets ‘rough,’ because I don’t focus on the word count or chapter count so much as whether the story feels complete. If I hit 35 chapters and 105,000 words in Skullkeep but the story doesn’t feel complete? Well, then… I’ll keep writing. But if the story feels complete at 95,000 words? I’ll wind it down to what feels like a good closing.

I spent my ‘formative’ reading years woring my way through the doorstop-size Fantasy tomes, and for Histories of Drakmoor, that’s what I want. If you can use one of the Drakmoor novels as a blunt instrument for self defense, that makes me happy.

My more recent stories, though, I’ve pared that back a little. Starting with Smilodon, my rough targets have been 35 chapters and 96,250 words. I feel like I can tell just as good of a story in 96,000 words as I can with 105,000, and shorter stories will let me work through my series list faster.

It is both my blessing and curse that I have yet to run out of story ideas. It’s a blessing, because it’s looking like I’ll never lack for something to write. But it’s a curse, because I love all my stories and want to write each and every one of them… at the same time.

Which is why I want to get into dictation. On the outside looking in, it seems to me that if I can dictate stories for the same amount of time I spend typing, I’ll produce absurdly more words, since a slow dictation speed would be over six times as fast as my comfortable typing pace.

At least, once I teach myself to dictate…

I’ve stated before that, aside from working on improving my writing habit, my major goal for 2023 will be to teach myself dictation, and I foresee much cussing and hating life when I start that.

Ah, well… nothing worthwhile is ever easy.

Daily Word Count: 6,646
Weekly Word Count: 14,717
Remaining Words to 25,000: 10,283


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