1. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    DK3654's Progress Journal

    Discussion in 'Progress Journals' started by DK3654, Sep 12, 2018.

    Alright, I think it's time I should make a progress journal following my WIP story + maybe other future projects.

    The story I am tentatively calling FORESHADOW (I am also considering the name Everyday Demons, either as a name for the series or as the subtitle of the first book). It's an hidden world type of urban fantasy, aimed mainly at the younger end of the adult range, and set in modern day UK in and around the London area. The basic plotline follows a group of different supernaturally affected people who end up in the employ of one of the big political players in the occult world, and they spend time either working to help resolve occult political problems as well as their personal issues.

    Overview (blurb style)
    Sarah Pierce is an accomplished psychology student trying to earn her place in the world. But when her under-control bipolar disorder develops strange and intense new symptoms, things take a turn for the worse. Sarah stumbles into a very different side of the world, where the supernatural melds with the mundane, and must find her place in this busy society. Everyone has issues, and she needs to learn how to play by the rules- with some help from new, unusual companions. But she just has to get herself caught in a deadly power struggle, as the reigning powers play a dangerous game. Sarah and her companions are faced with occult forces as dangerous as they are seductive, and they must learn how to control their own powers if they are going to make it through this.

    Main Themes (in rough order)
    • The Nature of Identity: What determines it, how does it change over time, what aspects are most important
    • Morality and Purpose: Absolute vs practical morality, meaning in life, religion and spirituality
    • Social Role and Perception: How people fit into society, how social perception affects us, individuality vs conformity

    This story is something that I would like to write several books for, but we'll see how we go before I commit to any number.


    Where I Am Now
    • Complete first draft of the first chapter (5,700 words)
    • Beginnings of the next chapter
    • Many plotlines, scenes and characters developed/planned (more or less)

    Threads About This Story
    Draft Excerpts:
    Character/Plot/Setting Development:
    Research Questions:
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2018
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  2. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    It's time to set some progress goals.
    1. Complete first draft of second chapter by October 4th, with at least 4,600 words to fit with the first chapter (unless I shorten the first chapter).
    2. Complete a revision pass of chapter 1, by September 23rd. Key changes in consideration here are lowering the number of perspective shifts, upgrading relatively less interesting details in the mundane second half, and changing the job scene to be a more practical position for the character.
     
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  3. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    Anyone here interested in answering a quick question?

    So my story starts with a prologue-esque sequence that is set before the main plotline, and doesn't feature the main protagonist, but does feature other major protagonists and leads fairly directly onto the main plotline. As part of that sequence, I have several perspective shifts.

    It starts with a throw-away character, setting the scene and slowly bringing us in to the action. (1008 words)
    We switch then to one of the major protagonists' perspective, Ashling, within the same larger scene, who is accompanied by two other major protagonists. (370 words)
    Then we move scenes and perspectives to Jade, another major protagonist. (1818 words)
    The major protagonist's from the first scene then show up, and we switch to another major protagonists' perspective- Alex. This sequence then ends. (391 words)
    The main plotline starts as we skip forward a number of days, and we switch now finally to the main protagonist, with whom we stay until the end of the chapter.

    Is this too many perspective shifts? Would it be better if the section using Alex's perspective was instead another section using Ashling's perspective to reduce the number of different perspectives, at least?
    Relevantly, all of these major protagonists I want to make a number of sections with their perspectives throughout the book- though of course, the main protagonist will have the most by a good deal. As a result, I do like sharing the perspective around a little to begin with rather than waiting too long, especially when there are more characters we will have to wait for.
     
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  4. Alan Aspie

    Alan Aspie Active Member

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    We don't know but you do.

    1. Forget everything about what you want.
    2. Think about your premise.
    3. Think about the promise of the premise.
    4. Then think about the theme of of your story. Not plot, but theme.
    5. Then ask yourself this: "Does the story get better via these perspective shifts?"

    6. Your answer to yourself is the right answer to your question.

    Story trumps all rules.
     
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  5. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    UPDATE

    Goals
    1. 1,500 words of the second chapter.
    2. Just about finished revision of first chapter. Only looking at practicality of the job scene.
     
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  6. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    I have found myself doing a considerable amount of research on mental health and what studying psychology in the UK is like which is not something I ever saw myself doing when I started this project, but hey, I'm learning the things!

    Wondering right now how deep I want to throw Sarah into study and job commitments, given I know she's going to hit some uh... serious difficulties...not too far into the story.
     
  7. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    UPDATE

    Goals
    1- 2,600 words of the second chapter
    2- Still considering revision to job scene
     
  8. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    UPDATE

    Goals
    1- 3,400 words of the second chapter

    Now more than 9,000 words total, which is nice. Gotten to the point where I am grappling with how exactly to divvy up the perspective of the story between my main characters. Let's see if I can't get a feel for it soon.
     
  9. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    UPDATE

    Goals
    1- Finished first draft of chapter two with 5040 words.

    Now more than 10,800 words total. Which is nice.

    Slowly bringing my #1 main Sarah into things now, not that she knows that's what happening.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2018
  10. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    UPDATE

    Finished by previous goals a few days ago, so it's time for:
    New Goals
    1
    - Finish first draft of chapter three with at least 4,700 words by 11th November. Chapter is currently at 785 words.

    Full text at 11,600 words.

    Although I intend to go over my previous chapters over the next month and make some edits, I'm not setting a progress goal for it because I figure my focus right now should be on getting to five or six complete chapters. At that point, I will be able to get a better idea of whether the pacing is right, how things have been sequenced, and whether the breakdown of character perspectives is working well. And even then, I imagine it's best to retain most of my focus on writing more for a good while, unless things come up that I really want to work on. I expect to go over and edit the finished book several times at least, so let's not put the cart before the horse.


    I've recently been using a spreadsheet to track my overall wordcount, break up my story in to different scene sections for each chapter with their individual wordcounts, plan ahead, calculate wordcount for each character's perspective, and more. It was easy to set up, and I find it actually helps me focus and get work done. The satisfaction of updating the wordcount for the scene I was just working on and seeing the chapter and total word count tick up is quite nice. I look and see '500 words more words till I get to 10,000' and I feel a little more motivated.
    So that's neat.
     
  11. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    UPDATE

    Goals
    1
    - 1,832 words of the third chapter (+1,047 words)

    12,700 words total.

    About a third of the way now to when I plan for the big reveal + convergence scene to happen, which kicks things up a gear.
     
  12. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    Remember when I said "unless things come up that I really want to work on"?
    Things came up that I really want to work on. Namely, I made a thread expressing my concerns about how I had been breaking my story up into chapters and wondering what the best way to do it was. Well, because of that thread, the number of writing videos I've been watching and my general concern, I am going to be taking a longer harder look at my first chapter. I can be good to just keep writing to get into things, but in this case I feel like my first chapter will be holding me back, and I really should work to get my plot pacing, perspective shifts, characterisation and writing voice to a better place before I sink too much time into bad writing.

    As a result, I'm going to suspend my chapter three goal until I figure out what I'm doing with chapter one. May well until end up rewriting most of the story so far.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2018
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  13. Oscar Leigh

    Oscar Leigh Contributor Contributor

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    Where you up to now?
     
  14. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    Rewriting my first chapter.
    Been thinking about what I want to change. I've decided I'll start with a more minimalist set of changes, see how that goes, and work from there.

    Expect to see another, large excerpt posted in the next week.
     
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  15. Alan Aspie

    Alan Aspie Active Member

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    Sounds good.

    Change a little. See how it effects. Change a little...
     
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  16. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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  17. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    UPDATE

    Finished my rewrite of the first chapter. Made related edits to the second chapter.

    We are back to writing the third chapter, and I have made some progress already. I will finish at least this chapter before I make anymore significant edits to the rest, and I'll probably do the next couple chapters first too.

    New Goals
    1- Finish Chapter 3 with at least 4,700 words by the 5th December. Current word count 2,664 (+832 words).

    Full text is currently at 13,099 words.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2018
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  18. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    UPDATE

    Goals

    1- 4,110 words of Chapter 3 (+1,446 words)
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2018 at 9:40 AM
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  19. DK3654

    DK3654 Almost a Productive Member of Society

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    UPDATE

    Goals

    1- Third chapter complete with 4,876 words (+766 words)
    Done some edits to earlier sections of the third chapter.

    Finished well before deadline. Cool.

    New Goals
    1- Finish Chapter 4 with at least 4,700 words by December 14th. Current word count 213 words.

    Total word count now 15,527 words.
     

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