Diary of a writing project. Day 79-80-81: Cold

This week word count goal: 62 500 words

Day 79
Word count so far: 42 923 words

I love rainy days… except in December.

I grew up with snowy December, see. Building snow fort and snowman, going down a snowy little hill side on a crazy carpet, we called them.

The little town we choose to raise our kids is more to the South, so of course, less snow. But still, I live in Canada. And in December, in Canada, snow is supposed to be happening. Not rain.

Nevertheless, when its time to write, I find rain very soothing, very inspiring. It quiets down everything else and words find their way with a little more ease.

Not that I’m hoping for more rainy December days, non! But if I could capture that mood and use it every time it’s time to write, maybe I could catch up on my deadline…

Day 80
Word count so far: 43 678 words


Chinook is a wind. It leaves on the East side of the Rocky Mountains.

When the Chinook blows, the snow melts and winter coats are not needed anymore. It feels, I am told, like spring, even in the middle of the coldest of winter’s.

Today, a little cousin of that friend came by, dragging clouds and wet leafs all over the place.

It was a windy, weird evening. A perfect evening to cozy up with a good manuscript about ghosts and mystries to finish!

Day 81
Word count so far: 44 513 words

It’s back to revising what has been written. I looove revising, refining everything, working on the sentences until it sounds better…

Oh yes, I’m perfectly aware that some of those very early revisions might end up in the trash. But certainly not all of it.

At least, I’m getting some work done this week. It’s slow, but way better than the past few weeks combine I think.

Too early to tell if the writing motivation is fully back on track.

One thing is sure, Christmas is coming and with it, a whirlwind of family obligations (yeah, that’s the exact right word, obligations).
The writing routine will suffer a little, but for my own sanity, I will certainly keep it up.
Count on my side of the family to make me want to escape in the wonderful world of words…

Dear writer friends, until next time…

Diary of a new writing project. Day 4-5: where we struggle big time to outline a YA novel

I never outlined any of the novels (YA, Middle-Grade or else) I wrote over the course of the past 20 years. I do not like outlining a story. For many reasons. The main one being, for me, it takes away the fun of writing.

With this new project, let’s call it YA-WIP, I thought I would give this good old outline a novel thing a try. A real one. Dreading, dreading, dreading.

But, since I am determined to query this book in by the end of March 2020, I need to step up my game and use all the tricks and tips out there. Because it usually takes me, what 6 months minimum, only to get through the very first, rough draft.

I loosely based my outline for YA-WIP on 3 outlining methods I really find inspiring (I did attempt outlining before, but…) and built my « own » from there.

Will outlining help me write faster this precious first draft?

Let’s outline and see…

Oh dear, common tropes city…

The first outline took me less than an hour to write. I did tough a lot the past months about the story, so I had a very good idea of where the story was going.

And I realized how much my story was sitting on common tropes. It a good story, I still like it. Although, it certainly needs way more work.

So, here’s my method for outlining a novel: write several outlines over the course of several hours, days.

I worked two days (let’s be clear, on and off; I still have a day job and basic needs to take care of, like showering and eating and stuff) on my outline.

End results

First outlines were a frustrating mess, mainly because I felt like I had to suff in some scenes just to meet the outlines requirements. It made the story feel like very old, rolling on common tropes and common characters. In one word, the first outline’s were hitting all the right points and I thought it was boring as s***.
Then, I simplified my outline more and more, to the point were I had the main points every story structure needs without being overly… commercial beat sheet.
So, yeah, I have a good-enough-for-now outline. Yay!

I really struggled with outlining this project though. Oh là là! Part of the discovery writer in me still thinks the outline will end up in the trash anyway.
But, it’s done and now, it’s time to start writing.

Oh yeah! Very excited about that part.

Until next time!

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