Helen (heleninwales) wrote,

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Writing progress

No progress with Moving a Mountain, unfortunately, but over breakfast I did scribble down a very bare skeleton of the plot for the next novel, the one about the magic department in an FE college. I now have enough to make a start on the first draft as soon as the revisions on Moving a Mountain are finished.

At least some good has come out of the impending inspection. Also I have incorporated a (supposedly true) anecdote a colleague told me last week into the final plot twist.

Having a day job is exhausting, but it's also a wonderful source of material.

The other reason the next novel is ready to write is that I have decided on the novel that I really want to make a good job of, the one that the novel I'm currently writing is just a practice run for.

Perhaps that will make more sense if I post the mantra that is in the template for each new chapter.

iTs just the shitty furst draught, yoo can allways go back and change ti later.
Gofor it!!!! (Go on, you can manage 15 minutes…)

And, even if it does suck, you still need practice at finishing a story. Since you already know that this story sucks, you obviously can't screw it up any worse, so this will make the perfect practice piece. Therefore you're going to finish it, dangit. Then when you've honed your skills, you'll be able to write something really good.

The first part is courtesy of Julian and the second part -- which is the relevant part -- is courtesy of Zeborah (both posters to rec.arts.sf.composition).

I tricked myself into completing Moving a Mountain by telling myself that it was just a practice for the far far better novel that I was going to write about the magic department in an FE college. That was the book I really wanted to write well.

I'm sure you have all already spotted the snag with this self-deception. What happens when I come to write the one about the magic department in the FE college? If I feel there is too much riding on the outcome, I will go into performance anxiety paralysis and nothing will get written at all.

So I just wanted to say that I still don't feel that my skills have been sufficiently honed yet. It will definitely take another novel's worth of practice to be good enough to write a really good novel. So Revealing Secrets will just be a practice run for the far far better novel I want to write about the dwarfs. *g*
Tags: writing progress, writing reflection

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