temporary book cover for the novel in progress titled HIM by Marisa Wikramanayake
Books,  Writing

HIM update for January 15

Quick explainer 

himFor those of you who don’t know yet, I am writing my second book HIM and have staggered my word count goals this time. If you support me on Patreon you get to read the first draft.

Word count goals this week: 2,000
Actual word count this week: 886
Total word count so far: 2,007
Total word count goal at this point: 4,000

How long did it take me? About 2 to 3 hours in total I think.

Here is the timetable of targets to reach: 

Jan 8 – 2,000 words      Feb 12 – 15,000           Mar 18 – 40,000
Jan 15 – 4,000                  Feb 19 – 20,000           Mar 25 – 45,000
Jan 22 – 6,000                  Feb 26 – 25,000           Apr 1 – 50,000
Jan 29 – 8,000                  Mar 4 – 30,000             Apr 8 – 55,000
Feb 5 – 10,000                 Mar 11 – 35,000          Apr 15 – 60,000


What have I learnt/what worries me?

1. I have remembered that starting a whole new novel is completely terrifying especially when you can see the shape of it if it were ever going to be a novel but you aren’t sure if you have the ability to bring it out of the ether and into that shape, that perhaps it is like imagining a lovely sculpture and knowing that if someone gave you a block of marble you would not know how to chip away at the block and create a sculpture and that perhaps to even try without learning the basics was a bit disrespectful to other craftsman. How is that for a fear? Especially when you still have one draft of another work that doesn’t quite seem as polished and therefore doesn’t still look like a novel.

2. First person viewpoint is great to write in – it can flow very easily but you have to be vigilant because if there are any pertinent details to add in, you have to go back and find a way to add it in  to what the person is saying, thinking or experiencing without breaking a voice or flow and making it seem quite natural for them to comment on it without even knowing why it might be important.

3. Minor characters are just randomly walking in, introducing themselves and letting me know that here they will ask a question and later on there will be an argument and by the way down the road there is going to be this other person that pops up. I am hoping that this is a good sign.

4. I am just going to keep trying to hit my goal for each week and if i go over it then that is an awesome bonus as I can make up the 1,993 words I am currently missing.

What distracted me?

1. Again it wasn’t about being distracted. I wish I could have hit 2000 this week  but I really couldn’t. I was tired and exhausted and I would end up writing a few sentences and falling asleep. Had it not been for work I may have hit 2,000 because despite the ideas taking some time at certain points to develop and come through, the writing flow was actually fine.

I also want to let you know that the issue with work is that I don’t have one particular regular shift that repeats itself daily. I sometimes have late night shifts followed by early morning ones so I then operate on very little sleep in between and need to catch up the next afternoon. And quite often I have to go in earlier and stay later – such is the news. Perhaps 2,000 words a week while I am working in Sri Lanka is a bit too ambitious but I am determined to stick through it. I also used to carry the book for Sedition everywhere so I could scribble in it at random moments but I don’t want to do that while I am here at the moment.

This was also why there wasn’t much on the blog this week. Sorry. I should have written things in advance.

2. This week was also full of meeting people after work was over and that was lovely and nice and oh so very social of me but as you can imagine it meant I didn’t get home and nap and eat and then write. And yes I have the weekend but i sleep late on the weekends and see family and friends and work on any freelance work I have and other volunteer commitments. I am hoping the whole process gets a bit better as I get more organised.

What did I write about? 

Wine, smoking weed and cigarettes and squares and politics and mosquitoes on a verandah.

To see what I wrote, support me and help birth this book on Patreon.

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