Writing Progress: Week Ending March 17, 2012

In a fit of exuberance, I managed to put down quite a decent week in writing:

Book of M:

  • Background Notes Wordcount: 0 words
  • First Draft Wordcount: 3,108 words

Grand Total: 3,108 words

So that’s a not-too-shabby start to the novel writing for this book.  For those of you following along at home, that comes to just under 4,000 words so far.

I have a few observations, at this stage.

First, I’ve been thinking about what I’ve written in terms of scenes and chapters: I’ve been convinced by various posts on the craft and notes on how to use this or that writing software (even if I don’t use said software) that the relevant work unit, when considering a novel-length piece of fiction, is not the “chapter” but the “scene”.  The former is something of a more fluid definition; varying in length according to the dramatic needs of various storytellers.  And in the revision process, it can be useful to have the story broken up into scenes so the scenes can be reshuffled, repurposed, added, or discarded as the edit reveals the need – and all of these recombined in endless varieties to form chapters.  That said, I’m finding the “scene” to be a tad arbitrary as well.  What is the natural breaking point of a scene?  I’m no sure that’s clear to me.  Ostensibly, the breaking point is when a sequence of actions and events comes to a discrete end (a mini-climax, if you will), or to when a shift in character POV occurs. But it’s possible, by that strict definition, to have scenes go on an exceptionally long time, and themselves to vary in length dramatically.

My point?  Continue reading