Wednesday, 14 July 2010


I did promise to share my To Do list - and I will, starting today.  I'll start as I mean to go on, with a bit of balance for all those of us who don't like to hear someone doing too well or suffering too badly.

On the down-side, little Kai woke at 4.30am today and after all the usual tricks failed (more detail another time),  I had to resign myself to staying awake.  It was a VERY long stretch to 11.30am and his first nap!  Typically, by that time I was way too wide-eyed to sleep, so after a looong day it's just a short blog tonight.

The good news.  One item on my To Do list was to write a novel - something that has been on all New Year's Resolution lists for the past decade.  This year was different.  I saw an article on Facebook on one of my favourite author's pages (Jacqueline Carey - Kushiel's Dart is a "must read") that challenged authors to "Write a Novel in a Month".  When I looked at the criteria I realised that 50,000 words wasn't actually that much - 1,700 words per day for a month - about 4 sides of A4!

As it happens I had a fruitless fortnight in January and still hit 37,000 - a huge success for a first attempt in my opinion.  In February I hit my goal and ended up with a mostly complete first draft of 55,000 words.  I'm now on a 3rd draft and the word count has risen to over 65,000 words.  Not bad considering most was done in the two half-hour daily naps my son takes and an hour as soon as he goes to bed.  Amazing how scarce time becomes a motivation!

The goal is to have a "final" draft ready for full critiques from friends and fellow authors by November... I'll let you know how I get on.

Now it really is time for an overdue sleep!  Goodnight!


  1. Woah! That's an impressive wordcount for january. i didn't finish the thank you letters until march, and my boy is an extra-long napper, lol. I am envious of your focus. You planning to publish any snippets online for comment? Oooh go on, go on, go on.

  2. That's quite an achievement (speaking as someone who took five years to get his magnum opus finished). Mind you, writing's the easy bit as you're probably finding: it's the endless re-writing, re-drafting and editing that really takes the time.

    Good luck!

  3. Writing is indeed the easy bit - getting anyone else to like it/read it/publish it is definitely the 'fun' bit!!
    I'm loving the 'JDI' philosophy - great stuff!

  4. Thanks BT - yes, thank you letters usually fall by the wayside here too - can't be super-efficient on all fronts (I'll be happy with one at any time!).

  5. TD / DB - yes, writing carries great momentum, especially if you postpone cheques on quality for later drafts. Remembering what you've written and making the plot more coherent and increasingly complex is the challenge now!
    And yes, I've no doubt getting published will be the trickiest bit but let's just assume that'll happen if I do the rest right!

  6. BT - will deffo publish snippets but probably not for a month or two... need to be focused on getting full manuscript ready for critique by Dec, so hopefully some core parts can be leaked and reviewed by Sept.