Inch By Inch

The Storytoolz sidebar says I’m at 100% on The Fire Children. I’m not, really, but hey, 75 words away from the 60,000 mark, which I anticipate I’ll hit shortly after this post goes up.

That’s actually not too shabby, considering this project started as a short story, morphed into a middle grade novel, and finally settled on being YA. So word count-wise, I went from aiming for 5,000 to 40,000, and made another leap to the 60,000 word mark. In the end, I anticipate this book coming in around 70,000. If I’m mathing right, I have two chapters and an epilogue to go. Possible it’ll end up at three-and-an-epilogue, but my post-it note outline seems fairly solid, several weeks after I scribbled it out.

Which means it’s likely, if I get into a decent rhythm here, that I’ll finish this book today. Not, y’know, 100%, but I’ve got my fingers crossed. I’ll uncross ’em soon, though. Typing is hard that way.

I’d wanted to be even farther along than I am, but a conversation in the last chapter was dodging all efforts I made at writing it. The dialogue was flat. It got exposition-y, and the transitions from one Important Piece of Information to the next weren’t flowing right at all.

So I scrapped it.

That sucked.

Okay, I mostly scrapped it. I created a new scene in Scrivener, copied the start of the chapter — the part that was working — and started the dialogue fresh. I also grabbed a little notepad and jotted down the things that needed to be said. Part of the problem I was having was a worldbuilding one, needing to make decisions about how something worked. Part of it was a matter of stakes-raising and how to reveal it.  Part of it was getting a feel for the character doing a lot of that talkifying.

But starting over made it work. Outlining within the outline made it work. And lo, did I finish chapter 17.

Now we move into endgame. Wish me luck.

Starting wordcount: 59,925
Tasty beverages: Coooooffeeeeeee
Feline desk evictions: They’re all napping right now. Productivity here I come!

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