writing · writing update

Writing Update #10: Reaching the End of Act One

Hello! Today I have another writing update! This is going to be a stats heavy post, so buckle in. If you are caught up on my writing journey (if not, you can catch up: here), you might remember that I have been having a rough time getting back into this rewrite.

To give a bit of background: I started working on draft 0 of my Rapunzel Retelling early January, and I finished it on the last day of March. I didn’t plan that draft at all and it was a big mess. I changed the plot about three times; I introduced a new perspective at about 75% in; I couldn’t keep side characters in line, and I had left so many gaps in the story.

In April, I decided to work on Camp NaNoWriMo with a contemporary project, however that did not work out for me because I had really found my niche in fantasy. So, I scrapped the contemporary project and decided I wanted to pursue a mermaid project, which I wrote 20,000 words for (more on this later.)

Then in May, I decided that I would spend the first two weeks rereading through all my 0 draft and then start the rewrite. I didn’t start the rewrite until June, and then it was slow, slow, slow progress from there. I felt like it was dragging – I just wanted to get to the good parts of my story. Which of course wasn’t fun for me, but it also won’t be good for potential readers in the future. That is something I will have to work on in the next draft.

I have had technology issues, and just been struggling with the balance of work and life. However, after this week, I finally feel like I am breaking through. I have finally hit 20k and then quickly afterwards 30k. It is such a relief to at last be hitting these kinds of milestones in my WIP.

Speaking of milestones, I achieved my highest word count in a single day ever! My previous best was 6,198, but this week I had one day where I wrote 6,537. I am so happy that I managed to do that! What is even better, is that the next day, I didn’t feel burnt out and got a solid word count in then too. These lump word counts have meant I am now reaching the end of Act One. The ending of Act One is what I have been most excited about since planning it, so I am excited to get to this properly and write those scenes by the end of next week. Then I get to move into Act Two and finally bring some of my favourite characters back into the story.

It has left me feeling more inspired that I have felt in so long.

This brings me to NaNoWriMo. For those of you who don’t know, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month which takes place in November. To win the challenge, you have to write 50,000 words in the month of November. I took part last year and I lost as I only wrote 34,615 words. However, that was on a contemporary project and now knowing that I feel more comfortable writing fantasy, I really want to give this another go.

Last year I had the advantage of having a cleared schedule due to lockdown 2.0, however, out of all the lockdowns that was the one that really took toll on my mental health, so I was not as productive as I could have been considering.

This year, however, I am going to be a lot busier. I work in retail, and November and December are our busiest months so I will be working a lot, however, I want to really prioritise working and writing, so I am not going to be socialising as much as I have been during the summer months. I do still want to commit to doing NaNoWriMo. Now this brings me to – what am I going to work on?

So, I am aware that November is still a month and a bit away, but I am still thinking about it. My original goal for this Rapunzel rewrite, was for it to be finished by Halloween, so that in November I could start a brand-new project for NaNoWriMo. But, because of my slow progress paired with all the technology issues I had for about three months, I ended up extending my deadline to the end of the year.

I don’t know if I am just jumping the gun a little bit here. But I have had a really good past few days. Like I already said, I reached my highest word count goal ever and I have been feeling so great about the whole story. So, I did a bit of math – I am working on this post a little earlier in the week than I normally do for these writing posts, so it is currently the 23rd (this post is going up on the 25th).

Between the 23rd and the 31st (including both days) there are 39 days. So far on the 23rd, I am sitting on 34,615 words. I have a goal to get to 100,000 words. If I want to achieve this by the 31st October, I will need to write 1,759 words a day. This is slightly intimidating, but I think if I really try and write a little bit each day, but then on my days off work really work to get a high word count – I think it is possible.

If I can do this, I will be returning to my mermaid project for NaNoWriMo.

I have no idea if this is going to be achievable, but I am really excited about this. I am finally feeling more motivated about my writing, and this kind of challenge/goal that feels realistic and enough of a stretch to keep me intrigued.

Let me know if you are already thinking about NaNoWriMo?

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5 thoughts on “Writing Update #10: Reaching the End of Act One

  1. Tale of the Cattail Forest got put on hiatus again- have to wait on dad once again. But at least, it is in the 6th draft. I had to add something to help a big picture problem- something going on with my antagonist

    Yes, heard of Nanowriomo, but never did the challenge- never had a book idea that could possibly be that many words


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