Writing Progress: Week Ending April 14, 2012

For various reasons, and for no reason at all, it wasn’t the best week ever for writing wordcount:

Book of M:

  • Background Notes Wordcount: 0 words
  • First Draft Wordcount: 688 words

Grand Total: 688 words

It’s hard to put my finger on just what the driving reason was for the relatively low wordcount this past week.  This happens sometimes.  Howbeit, I expect it to happen significantly more in the next two to four weeks, give-or-take.  Dear Wife and I are now embarking on Home Project Phase II.  I’ve alluded to this impending project previously, and it’s finally upon us.  And now that it is, it’s become clear to me that there will in fact be a Home Project Phase III very likely within two months, which will be another two-to-four weeks, and the possibility of a Home Project Phase IV is not outside the realm of possibility.

On a strictly technical level, it’s hard to keep track of Phase This and Phase That, which is why I’m hemming and hawing here.  In reality, of course, Dear Wife and I don’t call it Phase Anything.  There’s simply the stuff we have to do, and that list of to-do stuff happens to accrete around a small number of discrete and overarching home-related goals.  I don’t go into specifics because the specifics are somewhat sensitive to our living situation.  Suffice to say that when the various Home Projects are complete, the present nature of the Casa Chez Watkins will be radically different.

Anyway… you’re not here to read my oblique references to stuff related to my home.  You’re here for writing progress.  Of which there was rather little this week.

But what I did do was pretty good.  I finished the second chapter of “Book of M”, and overall I’m pretty satisfied with how that turned out.  I haven’t yet started Chapter 3.  I’m thinking a lot more, right now, about codifying a timeline of events for the book.  Chapter 2 isn’t really a flashback, per se, but it is a step backward from what might be called the narrative present and into the narrative past.  It concerns the backstory of the book’s co-protagonist – it’s a scene from that character’s past, but it’s framed as that character’s present and takes the character from this past event up to a point very close to but still prior to the immediate narrative present. Chapter 3 gets the story back to that narrative present, and returns the POV back to the main character.

My point being, the timeline starts to look just a little bit complicated already by the time we’re on a little ways into the story.  And so the need for the timeline starts to feel more immediate.  I’ve been thinking about a basic structure for a timeline in a relatively simple Excel spreadsheet, and I’m likely to spend just a little time formalizing that and putting at least a few of the events from my outline into it.   I’ll probably work through the timeline not in one big chunk of time but slowly over time, adding events and details here and there.  Mostly, I just want to keep track of how much time passes between major events (in terms of either days, months, seasons, or years) and who’s involved in those events and where they occur – because a little later into the story there will be a bit more threadweaving of the timeline of events as they’re portrayed in the story.  (In other words, as is often the case in literature, the events in the novel do not occur in a strictly linear fashion, but occasionally hop back and forth between narrative past and present.  This is not an innovative thing, but I just need some way to help me keep track of the details.)

So anyway, that’s that for this week.  As per the above comments on Home Projects and Phases… I don’t expect the next several weeks to be particularly productive, if at all.

But enough about me.  How as your week?