Dragon Turtle's Progress Journal (it rhymes! sort of!)

Discussion in 'Progress Journals' started by Dragon Turtle, Mar 17, 2018.

  1. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    I didn't end up writing any more after I posted last night, because right after that I found out they caught EAR/ONS/GSK. Rest of the night and much of this morning: gone reading every single bit of news I can get my hands on!!! (I wouldn't say I'm a huge true crime fan, but it's a side interest, and this is NUTS.)

    Uh... right... my book. I'm going to start the next chapter. Very soon!
     
  2. Shenanigator

    Shenanigator Not a Fucking Doormat Contributor

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    I hate writing those scenes! Every time I'd write Carole she creeped me out and I'd get nauseous and have to stop and take a break.

    2261 words in a day is awesome! Congrats and well done!

    Yeah, I know the feeling. I'm procrastinating big time today.
     
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  3. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    At this very moment I'm procrastinating because I wanted to describe something as sounding like a jet engine but, this being early medieval fantasy, they of course don't have jets, and I couldn't think of a good alternative. Time for some water and a snack and a potty break and checking every forum thread and
     
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  4. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    Despite procrastination issues, turned out to be a great writing day. 4359 words. Were they good words? Hell if I know, but I had a good time! I decided to throw in a scene that's just unabashed shippy nonsense and it might not make it into the compiled draft... but I really wanted to write it, so I did.

    I also surpassed my Camp Nano goal. I have nowhere else to post this as long as I'm pretending Twitter doesn't exist, so I'm sticking it here.

    Camp-2018-Winner-Facebook-Cover.png
     
  5. CoyoteKing

    CoyoteKing Good Boi Contributor

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    That’s amazing. I wish I could learn to write that fast.
     
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  6. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    I'm a binge writer. I'll go several days at a time without writing a word and then churn out a couple of chapters. I'm actually trying to break this habit and get more comfortable with writing a little bit at a time, because (a) I'm not wild about the "several days at a time without writing" part, and (b) I'm hoping to become a parent in the next few years and writing during smaller bits of time seems more realistic in that scenario. But damn, I do love those days where I'm able to just write for hours.
     
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  7. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    On the cusp of the climax. Have no idea what's going to actually happen at the climax. Well, that's not true, I have the framework of an idea, just not the details. This book has been relatively low on action so I want it to be really action-packed, but I'm not sure how to do it without totally breaking the story so far. Argh.

    It's actually not even the real climax. It's like, a false climax. Is that a thing? It must be a thing. I did it in the first book too, where there was this dramatic battle scene, but the real climax came after and was much quieter.

    There's got to be an actual literary term for this and I'm just full of shit. "False climax," yeah right.

    Edit: I Googled it and it is totally a thing, it just doesn't mean what I thought it means. Apparently what I mean is just the first climax, since stories can have more than one climax. WHO KNEW.
     
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  8. Shenanigator

    Shenanigator Not a Fucking Doormat Contributor

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    Multiple...? Sure, why not? Sounds far better than fake false climaxes to me! :supergrin:
     
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  9. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    Gosh now that you mention it, this isn't the first climax at all. It's like, I don't know, the tenth? Actually, this begs the question of whether it still counts as a climax if it happens off-screen... man, literary theory is so fascinating, isn't it? :D
     
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  10. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    There comes a time in every book where my writing soundtrack starts to consist entirely of a single 80s pop song played on repeat. That's normal, right?

    Anyway, I think I'm figuring out the climax. It's actually a real climax now. I just have to add another chapter to make it work.
     
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  11. Shenanigator

    Shenanigator Not a Fucking Doormat Contributor

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    Yep. I've had a couple of those while working on my novel. There was like a three day period where I listened to nothing but Elton John's "Mona Lisas and Madhatters" because it's Alexei's favorite song, and I was writing Alexei-centric scenes. And when I was writing and editing the Big Moment sex scene, all I listened to was the song that was playing on the MC's stereo at the time. (The Babys cover of "I Love How You Love Me").

    Whatever gets the job done!
     
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  12. CoyoteKing

    CoyoteKing Good Boi Contributor

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    Yuuuup. I play certain songs on repeat so much I permanently associate them with that book.

    Yoshi's soundtrack is currently Everybody Loves Me by One Republic. (Also Let's Face It, I'm Cute by 11 Acorn Lane.)
     
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  13. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    Oh man I love Everybody Loves Me. I used it for someone, I think it was Sil. The charming demon in the first book you read for me.

    I love Mona Lisas and Madhatters! Dang, there's good songs going on in this thread. :D
     
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  14. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    At it again.

    me: It's time to write... the CLIMAX. Let's nail this down. What's going to happen?
    brain: Listen to this. I've got it. I've got the most AMAZING idea.
    me: Yeah? Yeah??
    brain: Are you ready?
    me: Yeah!!!
    brain: They make out.
    me: NO
    brain: Hurt/comfort kiss.
    me: NOOO... well....
     
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  15. CoyoteKing

    CoyoteKing Good Boi Contributor

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    You knoooooow...

    Completing a major romantic subplot would be a great way to end the second book in a trilogy.

    Just saying. *slinks back into the shadows*

    (Kiss! Kiss! Kiss!)
     
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  16. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    But that's the thing, it can't be complete yet! This is prime Miko-tormenting material. He's still in a "totally confused about romantic and sexual feelings" stage. If I don't force him to spend several months slowly realizing he's attracted to his best friend and not knowing what to do about it, he'll just be happy. What kind of nonsense is that?!
     
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  17. CoyoteKing

    CoyoteKing Good Boi Contributor

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    That’s actually an amazing point. Carry on.
     
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  18. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    Okay, I actually figured out the climax for the most part. I'm super pumped. It's got action (read: lots of killin'), it's tense (at least in my head, at this point), and it feels like an appropriate successor to the first book's climax. Taking a few days off drafting to let the idea stew and see what else comes to me.

    In other news, I was so gung-ho about powering up my villain in this book, I'm legitimately not sure how the heroes are going to defeat him now.

    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    That's what book three is for!

    One of the trickiest things about this series has been balancing the magical powers. I think about this issue all the time. I really wanted to avoid ruining the stakes by having Miko get so powerful that the reader's just left thinking "So what?" about everything. But I also wanted Miko to be a fucking god-like sorcerer by the end. The solution, of course, is a lot of limitations along the way, and a god-like villain. Since both of them are simultaneously trying to level up, I have to be really thoughtful about not letting them outpace each other enough to break the story. There are many times when they have legitimate plot-related reasons to want each other alive, too, so I match those up with the times someone would otherwise be vulnerable. It's a delicate balance. I'm always having to stop and look carefully for Why Don't You Just Shoot Him moments.

    I'm having fun with it. Even if I'm a little stumped at the moment.
     
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  19. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    me: *asking questions about what getting stitches feels like*
    husband: What did Miko ever do to you?
    me: WHO SAYS IT'S MIKO

    (it's Miko)
     
  20. John-Wayne

    John-Wayne Madman with a pen in hand Contributor

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    LOL,
     
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  21. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    Aaaand I have a draft.

    Writing that last sentence was pretty fun. But I've actually been incredibly sad the past few days, knowing the end was near. I get like this every time I finish a first draft, which is silly, because it's still faaaar from being done-done. And even not counting revisions, this is the second book of a trilogy; the story itself isn't even done. But I can't help it. I get all sniffly, like it's the end of an era. I'm going to be a wreck when I finish book 3.

    I'm trying to make a plan for what to do next. I kind of wish I'd finished just a couple weeks later than I did, because June is going to be very busy at work (standard end of the school year madness + we're packing up and moving to a new building), so it would have made a good natural break before I go back and tackle revisions. But as it is, I've got a couple more slow weeks before things get crazy, and I'd hate to waste them not working on writing. (I'm neurotic about how I spend my time. Take it easy and relax for a while, you say? Are you nuts?!)

    My standard procedure for when I finish a first draft is: Take some time off, anywhere between 1-3 weeks depending on how much I'm dying to go back and look. Read through the draft, making notes on everything I want to change and improve. Dive right into revision. The revision itself, I have no standard procedure for. It's literally been different for every book I've written.

    But I'm pondering mixing things up this time around. I'm considering doing a read-through right away, then taking a break. This is because it seems like I always come up with a great idea for a big change I want to make right around the time I'm wrapping up the second draft. Then I get annoyed I didn't think of it sooner. It seems like my brain needs more time to percolate on what exactly needs to be improved.

    Of course, I could also take one break, do a read-through, then take another break. But that doesn't solve my neurotic must-use-free-time-while-I-have-it problem. :p

    I have a couple other options, too:

    1) There are some things I already know I need to change, and I know exactly how and where I need to change them. So I could go ahead and fix those before calling the draft done.

    2) I have another round of revision I want to do on book 1. The main thing keeping me from jumping on this option is, uh, I don't want to lol. It's a pretty substantial change, so I've been procrastinating, using the excuse of drafting book 2. However, there's another argument to be made against starting it now: it involves changing the storylines of two supporting characters, and I'm still not 100% solid on how those storylines are going to resolve, so it might be wise for me to wait all the way until post-book 3 to fix them up. Or am I just looking for another excuse...?

    Typing this up now, it seems like the best plan would be: Option 1 for the remainder of May. Take a break in June, probably do a read-through halfway through the month, then jump into revisions in July.

    Or... maybe I'll let myself have some... *gulp* actual relaxation time. Can you even imagine something so outlandish??
     
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  22. John-Wayne

    John-Wayne Madman with a pen in hand Contributor

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    I know how you feel, the end of my draft sort of sneaked up on me, and kind of left me with "What now" type of feeling. I took a few days off then got started on the revision.
     
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  23. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    Assorted other thoughts:

    -In today's scene I had a character call someone else a turd, and I looked the word up on the Online Etymology Dictionary to make sure that's not a recent coinage. (I'm not super strict with this sort of thing; my characters use pretty contemporary turns of the phrase, but I do like to avoid glaringly modern slang.) And ohhh no, not at all. Turd comes from Old English, and it has a cognate in Proto-Indo-European. Same root as "dung." In the words of my husband, "Glad we've preserved the most important parts of our ancient heritage." lol.

    -I really like the image I ended the book on, but I wish the last word were better. It's "smiled," and it's important in the context of the scene, but pretty generic otherwise. The last word of book 1 is "alive," which is thematically meaningful to the whole book, and stands in contrast to the title which has the word "Death" in it. Ain't that cool? File this under the category of Things No One But Me Will Ever Notice or Care About. My first words aren't anything special: "Miko" and "Whenever," respectively.

    -Miko and Taji did not kiss once in this book. Three cheers for my self control! ...no promises one won't squeak in during revision.
     
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  24. izzybot

    izzybot Transhuman Autophage Contributor

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    I absolutely love things like that -- arc words, bookending, that type of stuff. I'd notice :D
     
  25. Dragon Turtle

    Dragon Turtle Deadlier Jerry

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    YESSSSS high five for arc words!
     
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