Thursday, 22 January 2009

Bad writer! Bad blogger!

I have been a bad blogger.

I haven't updated for 10 days.

I've also only written 2,043 new words of my novel.

Considering I'm supposed to write at least 500 words a day to hit my target of completing the first draft by 6th June (exactly 5 months after typing the first word) I'm not doing well - just a measely 204 words a day average for the last week and a half.

But I have an excuse.

Of course.

I've been busy!

There was the short story book launch I went to last Wednesday, then drinks in the bar of the Grand Hotel on Friday, then a wedding reception on Saturday, then cinema on Monday, then a Flash Fiction event with Leigh yesterday (more on that later) and well, here we are on Wednesday again.

Time does indeed fly when you're having fun, but I'm not going to feel guilty about it.

For a start I promised myself that I wasn't going to be hermit-like when I wrote this novel (unlike novel 1 when I wrote nearly every night and completely knackered myself by the time I'd finished the first draft 3 months and 3 weeks later!) and it's good to get out and experience life or you've got nothing to write about.

And there's the fact I've still got 10 days to get to my end of January target (26,000 words) so that's only 600 odd words a day instead of 500.

So it's do-able, I've written more than 20,000 words and I'm happy. I haven't got the 'don't care about my characters much' vibe that I had with the old book 2 (which is pretty much why I stopped writing it) and I like how jumping from character to character (I've got 2 characters in 1st person POV and 2 more in third) stops me getting bored with any one story thread. Whether it actually works or not I don't know - but I'm not going to think about that until I finish the first draft and read it through.

So what else?

The first bit of my advance arrived in the post the other day (from the Brazil deal) and very exciting it was too! I couldn't stop looking at my cheque (in case you're interested, your agent writes you a cheque after taking off their cut and any foreign tax/charges that may apply). In fact, so excited was I at the the thought of buying myself some jewellery to commemorate this momentous occasion (and the more down-t0-earth thought about the size of my overdraft that swiftly followed!) I quickly took it to the bank and paid it in.

And then realised that I should have photocopied it first. As a souvenir.


Ah well. I'm sure whatever I buy myself as a memento will do nicely instead of a piece of black and white paper!

What else?

My agent got in touch to ask if I'd do a magazine interview (for a new writing magazine that's come out/about to come out) about my experience of finding an agent/getting a publisher etc and I said "Sure!" (am hoping it's one I can do via email rather than face to face so I can think about my answers first!). Anyway, the mag wants to do it in April apparently but we think it would be better if it were published in September/October when my book comes out. Publicity and all that.(God, can't believe I just wrote that. Do pinch me - hard - if I ever start to sound a bit wanky about this whole getting published thing!). So anyway, we'll see what happens with that.

And...what else?

I got my edits from my editor! (should probably have thought about that before brazenly stating I could hit 26,000 words of novel 2 by the end of the month!). On the upside she really hasn't given me all that many to do. I think it's about a page and a half and she told me that her average is about 6 so I should be very pleased. I am! Luckily none of the edits are overly complicated - just to add a bit more description (my weak point!) and some queries about character's motivation to do something or say something. Basically, hopefully, I won't have to sweat over the edits too much (famous last words and all that).

And now it's wayyyyy after bedtime (normal people's bedtimes anyway) so I'll post about the flash fiction event Leigh and I went to the next time I blog. Which won't be in 10 days time.


20,224 / 90,000 words written (22.5%)

P.S. Sorry I didn't get round to commenting on all the comments on my last blog post. But I am very relieved that I'm not the only annoying person in the world that comments on the writerly devices used in TV shows and films! I think it means that writing is well and truly in our blood now - which is a good thing :o)


liz fenwick said...

Sometimes its best not to push the book too hard and let your mind do so writing so that when you sit down again - boom it's all there.

Excellant news on the article - I love hearing all the things that are coming your way :-)

Yvonne said...

Wow you have been busy! Great news about the edits but I am not surprised at all. I think I would collapse at the sight of my first writing cheque! And talking about publicity is not being wanky at all. Writing might be very creative but it's a business too. I want to hear it all!

Fionnuala said...

Wow! I'm reeling alittle after reading that.Off to get a paracetamol and dream about being published! Fx

JJ said...

Wow, there might have been a ten day hiatus from the blogging, but you certainly been busy. What a lot to catch up on!

Look forward to hearing about the flash fiction event.

I too don't care about wanky (I never thought I'd type that publicly... publically?) I wanna hear it all please.

HelenMHunt said...

A nice piece of jewellery bought with the cheque sounds mucn nicer than a photocopy of the cheque :) What exciting times!

Anonymous said...

You're storming ahead with your new novel, compared to my inching-forward efforts. As for your blogging hiatus: wow a whole ten days - big deal! Seriously, I'm not a believer in blogging every day just because "it's important to" or "you're supposed to". I think you should post when you have interesting things to say. In this case you clearly have tons of interesting things to say. So great post!

I'm looking forward to hearing about the flash-fiction event, and do let us know what you buy with your well-earned money.

Gonna be a writer said...

There is life outside the world of Blog and it sounds like you've been living it. Well done you.
Pity about not photocopying the cheque though.

Leigh said...

Only 600 words a day instead of 500? Start of the slippery slope, that... ;-)

You're not even sounding proto-wanky yet, but we will, you can be sure, let you know if you do. Although I will forgive you; it all just sounds so exciting!!

12:48am? Bit early for you, isn't it?

Debs said...

It all sounds so exciting, so please make sure you keep on telling us all about it, every step of the way.

Keep on, keeping on with novel 2, you'll definately get there on time, I'm sure of it.

Can't wait to read your interview, in the new writers' mag.

Bernadette said...

Ooh, don't know where to start! Cheques, interviews, edits, past the dangerpoint in Book 2, book launch, flash fiction - have you cloned yourself?
Happy to help out if you get too busy but it'd have to be the cheque or the book launch - I don't think I could do any of the others for you! :)

B said...

You sound really happy. Who are we to bring you down with calls of 'bad blogger!'??? ;o) Anyway i'm a terrible blogger recently. *hangs head in shame*

I love living up here, but I'm so jealous that you get to meet up with other down-saaarf people! lucky b*gg*r :) Look forward to hearing about it!

HHope said...

Don't feel too bad about your daily word count! You've got 20,000 words so far and that's like 18% of your book!

I've been stuck around 50,000 words for months on my draft, but I'm hoping to cross the 60,000 mark by the end of the month!

Kate Lord Brown said...

Well done Cally! OMG .. advance cheques. I thought they were just something we all dream about :) What's the short story book called?

womagwriter said...

Hello hyper happy Calistro - glad to hear it's all going well! Hope you are on target with both the edit and the new novel for this month.

Zinnia Cyclamen said...

Sounds like you're having a great time, and that's really good news from where I'm sitting.

Nakabunot Kay said...

I totally disagree with your title! You are simply one of the best! I was doing my coursework assignment when I saw your post. Keep up the good work!