So I was very productive in my week off the challenge. However the kerfuffle expanded (as kerfuffle is wont to do) to take up two more days than I expected.
I got Tuesday's podcast episode in the can. It needs a little tweaking, but not much. I read the first chapter of The Man Who Did Too Much -- quite a challenge, really, but FUN, and maybe I'll tell you more about that Tuesday or Wednesday after it's posted. (I'm honestly considering reading the whole thing on a podcast.)
I also did a couple of raw recordings of short episodes for the writing podcast of this blog -- but that's for later.
(In the meantime, I hope you caught the previous episode -- "The Bellhound." A somewhat silly contemporary fantasy story about a woman and a not-quite-a-dog. I think I'm getting better at performing, and I think that episode shows it.)
The 5k a Day Challenge
So I didn't start back until yesterday, and so far I haven't yet got up to 5,000 words in a day's progress. I got about 3,000 both Saturday and Sunday. And on Sunday, at least, I worked ALL DAY.
But I am pleased all the same, because I was doing hard and fruitful work: developing character "vibes" -- for want of a better term -- and also filling in some parts that I hadn't hammered out in the outline because I didn't realize they needed hammering out.
My heroine has convinced me to let her keep her sassiness. "I am sweet. I am not one of those obnoxious and shallow heroines. I can make people love me, especially when I get into trouble. I have surprises up my sleeve for you."
And she did. She has a frankness and aplomb that make her work as a suspense heroine without her being tougher than your average damsel. (She actually is a little tougher than your average damsel, but the toughness doesn't come from knowing how to use nunchuks.)
Not sure if it's a problem if she becomes a "type" I will use a lot. Especially in the voice area of the series. After all, this is supposed to be a kind of formula series where readers can expect a similar feel from each book. (She is actually is a variation on the type of heroine I use a lot in my regular fiction. But I think it will be more noticeable in this pen name.)
Writing Across The Whole Story
The other thing I did was start writing bits of end scenes that were problematic in my head. As I worked them out, I began to discover additional scenes that make the timing and development work better.
I always work across the whole story when I write -- I don't write from beginning to end. I thought doing the Xtreme Outline would change this, but it didn't.
It enhanced it.
It supercharged it.
Wow Jingies, it's a fabulous experience now. It's like painting quickly across a canvas, spontaneously, without hesitation, because you can see the whole composition while you work. You've got a little burnt ochre on your brush so you dab, swash, dab to tie things together before you load up on the blue.
I still still stall out inside the scenes often -- deciding if this is the moment for the heroine to look away or the cop to play it hard or soft -- but there are no squishy blank spots for me to avoid until I figure it out. I do not get stalled between scenes at all. Never. I can jump anywhere and get straight to work.
Me likes it muchly.
I just hope the pace picks up once I get these odd scenes nailed down.
See you in the funny papers.