There are Novembers where I have struggled to make words. There have been Novembers when I almost failed, abandoning because I didn’t know where the story was going but where it was utterly sucked. There have been Novembers where even two books seemed unambitious; maybe I should try three next year? *
This November is not like any of those. I haven’t had any significant difficulties with keeping on pace for my word count goal. I don’t have a complete outline but I have not struggled with the direction of the story, and having a bit more freedom to let the story go where it wants at the pace that it wants has been rather pleasing. Also, while I don’t necessarily like where the story is going, I also trust that I can take even the most depressing story and find the healthy kernel**. This feels like a big one book year rather than having any urge to write multiple stories.
And so, we find ourselves two thirds of the way through the month. How goes the fight?
For me, my numbers are stacking up like this:
- Words: 52,027 / 70,000 — I have the official win, and I am well on track for my own goal.
- Chapters: 24 / 35 (assuming 2,000 word chapters) — word count is at 74% of goal, chapters are at 68%. Some upward drift on chapter length, it seems, but pretty close honestly.
It’s story progression that is worrying me most at the moment. I wrote on Twitter that I thought I was about half way through even with the 50k words, but I think it might be worse than that.
Harmonies is a redraft, and the original version of this part of the story was 18 chapters long. The point of the story I am at now maps to about chapter 7 in the first telling, which is about 39%.
So, I am roughly twice as far through the planned word count as I am through the story: two thirds done with the time, but only one third done with the plot.
Multiplying things out, I can reasonably expect this story to be roughly 70 chapters, about 150,000 words in length.
That is rather more daunting than I expected.
Well. Best get cracking.
[*] no. The answer is: I shouldn’t.
[**] Better is quite an uplifting story… now.