NaNoWriMo Summer Camp Day 25

Today is the start of the final week of NaNoWriMo. I procrastinated  and I have a doctor’s appointment, so I only worked for the minimum of 60 minutes.

I spent the time working on the new chapter I created yesterday “Choices”. I am trying to keep the chapter tightly focused on providing examples of the different options available to faculty wives in the late 19th and 20th century.

I am pleased with the work I did today and, hopefully, that will continue tomorrow. Wish me luck.

 

NaNoWriMo Summer Camp Day 23

Today I worked a little over two hours. I now have two outlines. One would be all the chapters I went through and did revision via quotes. I would need an introduction and a conclusion. The other outline has two new chapters.

After I wrote up the outlines, I started looking through all my previous drafts for whatever I have already written about sexuality and intimacy. I have mixed feelings about this process. I wonder if I am just making busy work for myself and retreating to my comfort zone of research. Research is easier than either writing or revision. Writing is easier than revision.

I may continue down the potential rabbit hole of intimacy for another day or so. Now I am off to Jacob’s Pillow to see a dance performance.

 

NaNoWriMo Summer Camp Day 22

Today I went through the epilogue, revising and cutting quotes. I worked for 103 minutes. So far, I have worked an average of almost two hours a day. It may not seem like a lot but what I am doing is hard.

When I began revising via quote, I started with Chapter 2 because I had been working for so long on Chapter one, I was sick of looking at it. Today after I finished with the epilogue, I turned my attention back to it. In the end I decided not to do the quotes in Chapter 1 because I have so many different versions of it that it was very confusing.

What I did instead was think about the organization or reorganization of the whole manuscript. Realizing that there are two problematic chapters one, and seven I produced an outline that simply eliminated those chapters. That gave me a potential manuscript of seven chapters in 272 pages.

I then thought about what I was leaving out by eliminating those chapters and what I wanted to work back into this new structure. Because I have been working on this manuscript for so long, I have multiple chunks I can move around and put in either existing chapters or new ones.

By the end of my 103 minutes, I had a new structure that that would include a revised chapter one, a new chapter on cookbooks, and a new chapter on sexuality for a total of ten chapters and probably, but this is just a guess, 380 words. If I do wind up with a manuscript that is 380 words, it means I would have only cut about sixty pages from the current manuscript. When I think about it that way it is a lot of work for little pay back. As you can tell, this is still a work in progress. I am still trying to figure out what I am doing.

NaNoWriMo Summer Camp Day 20

Today I worked for 90 minutes. I started by trying to tackle the quotes in chapter 7. The chapter really needs reorganization. Part of me thinks I could just eliminate the whole piece, reducing my overall word count by more than 15,000 words.

Thinking about all that is overwhelming since I really wanted to finish this round of revising via quotes before I tackle the more substantive issues in the manuscript. After getting through thirty-three pages of Chapter 7, I gave up. I then turned to Chapter 8.

The main issue with Chapter 8 is that it is too long, and I need to divide it into two. I am not focusing on that right now. Again, I just want to finish the quotes pass. I think I will be done with the remaining material by Monday. Of course, I will let you know whether I achieve that goal.

NaNoWriMo Summer Camp Day 18

Today is day 18 of NaNoWriMo Summer Camp and I have surpassed my goal of 1861 words or 60 minutes a day for the thirty-one days of July. Today, after working for 140 minutes, I have a total of 1931 minutes or 113.58 minutes a day.

Today I worked on the quotes from Chapter 6 and also looked at other drafts of the chapter. I am still thinking about the overall organization of the book so, today, I looked at book proposals from several years ago. At that time I had a different organizational structure.

After I finish the revising via quote process, I may explore merging that older structure and the current one. One of my writing teachers, Kate, tried to encourage me to acknowledge that revision is a long process. I have been reluctant to accept that advice, but I am seeing more truth in it everyday.

 

NaNoWriMo Summer Camp Day 16

Today I decided to power through and do all the cutting, rewriting, and reducing of the quotes in chapter 4. It took me almost three hours and eliminated twelve pages. Starting tomorrow, I will have six chapters counting the epilogue left to do.

If I can keep up the same pace I did today, hopefully I could complete this part of the revision by the end of next week. Then I would be able to go back to looking at publishers and agents and sending out queries and proposals. Each publisher wants something different, so it is a good amount of work to get together the package to send to them.

I would also be able to get back to doing more with Tell It Slant although I do plan to begin reading Chapter 11. Tomorrow morning, I am going to go swimming which once again will be my self-care for the day.

NaNoWriMo Summer Camp Day 15

This is the first day of the third week of NaNoWriMo Summer Camp. Today I started with doing an exercise from Tell It Slant. “Write a scene of an early memory.” I did that and ended with almost six hundred words about an early memory of a traumatic event that occurred over sixty years ago.

The memory has been weighing on me recently, so I am glad I wrote about it. It was upsetting to relive what had happened which made it difficult to concentrate on revising my manuscript.

I did work for 65 minutes, both on the exercise and on the book. A week ago, I had put some notes in Keep about potential reorganization of the manuscript. Today I looked at the notes and produced a new table of content which moves various chapters around and splits up others.

The work to achieve this reorganization feels daunting but I will attempt it at some point. Because of NaNoWriMo, I will be working this weekend, but I am also going to try to get out of the house. I hope everyone has a great weekend.

 

NaNoWriMo Summer Camp Day 13

Today I worked for two hours on the book. Once I get going, cutting whole sections actually feels good. When I think about that though, I wonder if the book will make sense if I remove most of the quotes and some of the supporting material. After I go through this process, I will obviously have to read the whole manuscript again to see if it still holds together.

I have been pondering what I will do once July and NaNoWriMo Summer Camp is over. I really like the accountability that updating my word count every day gives me. Posting about it every day is also a form of accountability. What I need to figure out going forward is how to have that external accountability without necessarily posting every day.

One idea is to find someone who I could email everyday telling them what my progress had been. Another thing that occurs to me is that I could tweet about it every day which would be a win- win situation. It would help me keep up my Twitter count and it would be public external accountability. I am going to think about this some more since I have a little over two weeks left of NaNoWriMo. I will let you know what I decide.

NaNoWriMO Summer Camp Day 11

Today I had an appointment at 11 a.m. which got cancelled. I dislike when that happens because I usually tightly arrange my days. Being a control freak, it is not easy for me to change already made plans. In other words, I am not that flexible.

I worked for 96 minutes today. I started my working period with yoga which NaNoWriMo offered as part of Summer Camp. It was lovely and a wonderful way to form a mindful writing intention.

I did not have time to continue working my way through Tell It Slant. I also did not do anymore research on publishers and agents. I see in my email that one of the presses I queried has answered so I will look at that tomorrow. In a little while I am going to go to a pool in Holyoke and get a swimming lesson. This is one of my concessions to it being July and will be self- care.

NaNoWriMo Summer Camp Day 8

Today is the first day ofthe second week of NaNoWriMo Summer Camp. I worked for an hour, spending some time thinking about my characters and what structure to use to tell my readers about them. I also sent queries to two publishers. We will see if I get any postive response.

I plan to work on both Saturday and Sunday but also do some non- manuscript related actviites. I hope you all have a great weekend.

%d bloggers like this: