1. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    ToDandy's Writing Journal

    Discussion in 'Progress Journals' started by ToDandy, Jul 31, 2014.

    Well this sounds like fun, why not have one! Also I restarted a major project so there is no better time for this than now.

    CURRENT PROJECT:
    A Changeling's Hunt

    SYNOPSIS:
    When Abiku learns that he is a changeling, he sets out on an adventure to find the fairy that created him and the child he replaced.

    BACKGROUND:
    This is a project that I started back in 2011-2012, when I wrote the first draft. I spent a large part of 2013 on draft 2. This year I've started work on my draft 3, which is a complete re-write. My hopes are to have this completely polished by 4/14/15. Wish me luck!

    CURRENT STATE OF PROJECT:

    As of today, I just finished the first third of draft 3. The project sits at 16,403 words. Only about 58,000 words to go...
     
  2. Catrin Lewis
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    Interesting concept. Will there be anything about his thought processes or way of seeing the world to distinguish him from human beings? Is that difference one way he found out what he is?
     
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  3. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Actually the way he "finds out" he is a changeling is that in this story a changeling reveals itself around the time a normal child hits puberty. Instead their magic gets jumbled and confused, causing them to take on aspects of animals.

    In Abiku's case, he grow donkey ears, a monkeys tail, and shark teeth. His eyes turn to glass and his hair to straw. So that transformation is ultimately what clues him into his true nature and gets him kicked out of his village.

    However, the longer he is a changeling, the more his view of the world shifts and as the story progresses he thinks of himself less and less as a human, becoming a kind of embittered version of his old self.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2014
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  4. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Whew! Long writing haul today. Just completed Chapter 5 at 3,618 words. Feeling pretty good about it, but I think it might drag in some places. This is one that I might have to do some condensing on, even though it landed in my ballpark of 3,500 words.

    I'm still about one chapter behind schedule. I'll have to make that back sometime this week.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2014
  5. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Finished off Chapter 6 of 18 today. 3,500 in one day with the end word count of 4,200 for the chapter. Whew! Too bad that I am still a chapter behind schedule and I will be working for the weekend to catch up.

    I'm very happy with the new addition of this chapter. This was a difficult one for me to write because so many things were going on and nailing the pacing was killing me. Hopefully the Alpha readers will feel the same about it as I do.

    Next up is chapter 7 , which has a estimated word count of 3,000 words!
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2014
  6. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Current Word Count of the entire project is at 24,615.

    Only around 50,000 words to go!
     
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  7. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Forgot to update yesterday, but here it is!

    Chapter 7 of 18 was completed yesterday at 3,578 words, 500 over what it needs to be. I felt like I info dumped a little bit too much in this chapter and as a result it dragged somewhat in the dialogue. During my revision phase this chapter will likely need to be heavily condensed.

    Onto one of my longer chapters. Projected length is around 5,000 words! Only one of two chapters that go over 4,500 words.

    Current word count of entire novel is at 28,913.
     
  8. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Oh No! I almost forgot about my progress journal. Forgot to update for chapters 8/18 and 9/10. 8/18 ended at 5,600 words while my ninth chapter ended at about 4,300 words.

    It's not everyday you get to write about a donkey-boy fighting a demon horse! I was reasonably satisfied with both chapters but I'm sure I have a fair amount of condensing and lengthening in parts.

    Current word count on the project is now at 38,500 words. Yay! I'm almost to the halfway point on my 75,000 word novel!

    So far I am still about a chapter behind schedule, but I'm looking good for finishing draft 3.0 by the end of September.
     
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  9. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Been away at a wedding for some time, so I really didn't have time to update this, but now I'm back and I've hit the ground running again, finishing off my 10th, and 11th chapters ALL OVER THE COURSE OF TWO DAYS!!!!

    I'm going to need a little break now because my fingers and brain hurt.

    I was very happy with my tenth chapter and it is about 1,000,000 times better than my last version. It compresses time better but still delivers on the narrative. That chapter ended at 4,228 words.

    I wasn't as pleased with my 11th chapter, which I felt retained the majority of the same problems as the previous version. I have a feeling that at nearly 6,000 words I will be heavily compressing it or might even have to do a complete re-write on it again.

    And that makes me sad.

    TOTAL WORD COUNT: 45,556

    roughly 30,000 words to go.
     
  10. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Also, forgot to mention.

    I have two alpha readers right now who are helping me out as I go along. One is giving me more narrative feedback and the other one is giving me more grammatical.

    I didn't plan this, but it ended up being a happy accident and between the two of them I am getting a very solid, in depth critique. So a big shout out to both of them! Thanks for the help!
     
  11. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Chapter 12 of 18 is now complete! It's hard to believe that I only have 6 more chapters left.


    I've caught back up to my schedule, it looks like I am back on time again.

    My last chapter was 4,442 words. I felt okay with this one, at best. I have a heavy suspicion that this chapter is going to get a major overhaul and 4th full re-write. This seems to be becoming a thing and I need to correct that. Now that I'm back on schedule, I can take a little more time with my writing and slow it down.

    Next up is chapter 13, which is looking to be about 4,500 words again.

    TOTAL CURRANT WORD COUNT: 49,997

    Only about 25,000 to go!
     
  12. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Well, I didn't finish chapter 13 of 18 today....

    - insert sad face-

    But I did get plenty of work done. About 3,500 words written today. I still have about 1,000 more to go. On most days I would just finish this off, but I've got real life crap to do!

    This chapter so far has been a blast to write though. Robotic fake soldier, resurrected characters, a big fight scene, deaths, all that good stuff in one chapter!

    I will likely finish this tomorrow.
     
  13. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Finished 13 of 18 today and wow what a fun chapter to write. I hope my Alpha/Beta readers have as much fun reading this one as I had writing it.

    It was targeted at 4,000 words and I went considerably over. It ended at about 5,500 words. Wew. That being said, I don't thing the pacing is bad and don't think this will take much addition or subtraction.

    Next up is chapter 14.

    TOTAL CURRENT WORD COUNT: ~54,500

    Only about 20,000 to go!
     
  14. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Finished with chapter 14 of 18!

    I finally managed to get some time staked out to do some more writing! Unfortunately I'm behind once again. Felt pretty good about the chapter though. Mostly, for this second half of the book a certain character is giving me a bit of trouble. He's feeling too much like a blank slate when he is supposed to be mysterious. I'll have to fix this in the future.

    TOTAL CURRENT WORD COUNT: ~58,700

    About 16,000 words to go and only four more chapter.......I'm coming to the end of this, then it will be time for a nice break.
     
  15. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    AHHHHGH!

    This chapter is KILLING me! It was supposed to be done on thursday and I'm still working on it.

    It's my first chapter in a while with no battles, no people struggling to stay alive, and no demon monsters running around. It's just supposed to be a quieter chapter that poses character development for my lead and helps him get away from his self loathing. It's between him and a little kid who he is trying to protect. Kind of a pivotal scene right before the two climatic chapters I am going into.

    AND IT'S SOOOOOO HARD TO WRITE!

    I'm at about 3,100 words with it right now and have another to go. It's got to be done by sunday so hopefully I can finish it up tomorrow.

    Wish me a little luck....every bit counts for this one...
     
  16. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Off at work for the last week, so I couldn't really update, but here it is now.

    Chapter 15 was a very difficult one to write. Re-reading the first half of it, I can see I will definitely need to redo that particular area. I'm also feeling a little uneasy about the second half, but it isn't nearly the same level of a mess.

    All the same, it is done and that makes me happy, even though when I get to my next phase of revising, this will definitely be a heavy editing one.

    TOTAL CURRENT WORD COUNT: ~65,246

    Only three more chapters left. Time to wipe that tear from my eye. I'm are nearing the end and right on schedule for my 75,000 word count and end of september deadline.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2014
  17. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Killed chapter 16 over the course of 4 hours today! Whooorah!

    Finished it at 4,758 words

    What's even better is that I feel really good about this chapter and think with some polishing, it will be one of my most fun ones with some revealing tidbits...which is good considering there are only 2 chapters left and the next one is the climax. This is it! Big reveals, final battle, pulling all the strings together.

    Having started this in the beginning of july, it is hard to believe that it is almost done (on time I might add) after only three months. Yay! That gives me more time for editing.

    TOTAL CURRENT WORD COUNT: 70,004

    two chapters to go and 8,000 words
     
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  18. aikoaiko
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  19. ToDandy
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    @aikoaiko

    I think you are absolutely right. Usually chapters like this are not to difficult for me. I think going from tense chapters with people trying to stay alive to a slower part is what really threw me off.

    ....plus it was a big scene with the little kid (7 years old) and nailing a naturalistic conversation between an older character and a kid can be difficult.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2014
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  20. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Well, I finished the climax of my novel today at ~6,200

    Felt some parts sucked, some parts were great, some parts were solid, and some part rocked.

    It will take a lot of reworking and rewriting but overall I feel the ideas all come together and it has a nice action packed conclusion. It was a blast to write and I can't wait to get a another pass on editing it. Now though comes the swan song. The final chapter. I'd like to say it is all "falling action" but it isn't. Hopefully it too will have some good tension too.

    Time to stick the landing!

    TOTAL CURRENT WORD COUNT: 76,000

    4,000 words to go.
     
  21. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    IT IS FINALLY FINISHED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    A little behind schedule but A Changeling's Hunt was officially completed today. I wrapped the final chapter at 3,833 words. I felt pretty good about that final chapter. I felt the pacing was solid and it ended it on a high note. We'll see if the beta readers agree.

    Overall I feel very good about my 3rd re-write and it is easily the best rendition of this story, yet. The rest of the week I will do a quick revision/proofread to make it accessible for my beta readers. Then, I leave it for 3 months to begin my work on my newest screenplay. Meanwhile my Beta Readers will hopefully be taking a look at the novel and giving me feedback.

    I'll say my goodbyes to Abiku, the changeling, until next spring.

    For now, though, it always feels good to finish something.

    FINAL 3.0 WORD COUNT: 79,883

    0 words to go. IT IS DONE!!!!!!!
     
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  22. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    I haven't updated this for a while, so I thought I'd give you an idea of what's going on right now and let you know that I am still alive.

    As mentioned in my last post, my work on Changeling's Hunt is currently on a hiatus after finishing draft 3.0 at the beginning of October. I'm letting it sit until February so I can approaching it from a fresh perspective.

    Meanwhile, I will fill December with my latest screenwriting project, titled "SEVEN ROOMMATES" which will deal with a character with multiple personality syndrome. I'm expecting to begin (and finish) this project in December and January. So in a month's time, I should be having regular posts here, again!

    Talk to you all them!
     
  23. ToDandy
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    Wrapped my latest rendition of Seven Roommates today at 32,000 words. I had intended to document the process similar to what I did with Changeling's Hunt, but screenplays just move so much quicker and by the time I'd remembered the writing journal, I'd already finished another draft of it.

    I felt okay about the project. It is a little trippy writing a murder mystery within someone's head and I'm not sure if it will make sense. I'm REALLY relying on my workshop group for this one and hopefully they can give me some good feedback on it. For now, though, it'll get set aside for a few months so I can distance myself from the material. I'll be re-visiting it in about four months.

    On the novel writing side of things, I will soon be returning to A Changeling's Hunt at the end of this month. I haven't touched it in about three and a half months but I'm excited to be returning to the project again.

    To start off I'll be completely re-reading through the novel and taking notes on what works, what doesn't, and which chapters need to be completely re-written. I will also be reviewing my Alpha reader feedback, many of which are almost done.

    Expect to start see WAY more regular updates from me! I'm back!
     
  24. ToDandy
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    I'M BACK!

    My 6th month break from my book is officially over and I can start writing on it again! Yay!

    I've already gone back through the entire novel and done a punch up while taking notes on what to add, what to subtract, what to re-write completely, and everything in between.

    I'm really excited to be back on this project to day. Here is what my re-writes for Draft 4.0 are looking like.

    Chapter 1- Punch-Up Editing
    Chapter 2- Punch-Up Editing
    Chapter 3- Full Re-Write
    Chapter 4- Partial Re-Write
    Chapter 5- Partial Re-Write
    Chapter 6- Punch-Up Editing
    Chapter 7- Punch-Up Editing
    Chapter 8- Full Re-Write
    Chapter 9- Punch- Up Editing
    Chapter 10- Partial Re-Write
    Chapter 11- Punch-Up Re-Write
    Chapter 12- Full Re-Write
    Chapter 13- Full Re-Write
    Chapter 14- Punch-Up Re-Write
    Chapter 15- Full Re-Write
    Chapter 16- Partial Re-Write
    Chapter 17- Full Re-Write
    Chapter 16- Partial Re-Write


    So as you can see, the back end of my novel has quite a bit more work to be done on it than my front. Still, I'm excited to be working on it again.
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2015
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  25. ToDandy
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    ToDandy Contributing Member

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    Got sick for the last seven days, but now I'm well recovered and will be kicking up my editing starting tomorrow.

    First up will be chapter 1, which will incorporate the following changes

    -Basic editing on punctuation, sentence structure, exc.
    -Re-arranging world building descriptions out of an action scene and into the beginning (Don't ask why they were there to begin with)
    -Re-Writting bits of conversation to make it more naturalistic.


    I've already written this chapter three times. I think it is getting close now and this will hopefully be one of my final polishes on it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2015
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