Most of this is paraphrased, because seriously... so many ums.
brooke johnson fictionalist log - 001 transcript:
So, this is my first vlog. I plan on doing more of these, hopefully one a week. Just something different, kind of like a writing diary—or just, me talking at people—mostly just how my writing has been going, any issues I’ve been having, kind of a way to talk it out and maybe entertain you. I plan on doing excerpt readings, like from The Clockwork Giant—favorite scenes, that sort of thing—maybe do some readings from works in progress… whatever strikes my fancy.
As far as writing recently… writing is going pretty well. I had a bit of trouble earlier last week. I got stuck in the middle of a scene, but I worked it out. I figured out what was wrong and fixed it, so at least there’s that. I wrote about 8600 words last week. I didn’t meet my 10000 word goal because of the aforementioned problems, but at least I did get pretty far. I am about two-thirds of the way through the first draft. I’m at 62,000 words, give or take. I see about another 30000 words going into this, and that’s exciting because that would mean I’ve written 62,000 words in two months—July and August—which is insane. To put it into perspective, The Clockwork Giant, the first draft was 80000 words, and I finished it in four months, so I am drafting significantly faster now. It helps being super passionate and absolutely loving this story. Hopefully, I should be done with this book by the end of the month. That’s the goal. I am going on vacation one week, which I do plan to vlog with the beautiful Colorado landscape behind me, you know, for your jealous viewing pleasure.
So yeah, hopefully, I will be done with the first draft by the end of the month and then I will set the book aside for maybe a few weeks to a month, and then do a simple edit, things I thought about while writing. Several chapters need a lot of work. Some that are extremely long that need to be cut back. I have some shorter chapters that need to be fleshed out. I have some that are really episodic, and I need to add transitions and things between scenes. I have places where characters need to reveal information or say certain things to set up for later chapters. I’ve kind of done that as I’ve gone. If I start to write a scene and realize I didn’t lay any groundwork for it, I’ll go back and add a few things—a sentence here, a paragraph there. Sometimes, it’s things I actually did write but deleted the next day because I didn’t think it was important.
While writing this chapter, a bit of magic happens—a type of magic I hadn’t really thought about. I just kind of wrote it, and my inner pantser came out. It was a lot of fun. But then I had to go back and make sure it made sense.
It’s always really great whenever you’re writing and you have it all plotted out and you know where you’re supposed to go next, but you don’t really know the details. Whenever you’re in the middle of writing and you have this great idea and you just do it. And it works. That’s the best thing. Sometimes you do it and it doesn’t work at all. It’s the stupidest idea you could have had. Those are the days I just absolutely love. When writing is just so much fun, it’s just like this whole big adventure all over again, even though I know the story, even though I know what’s going to happen, it lets me experience the story like a ready. I just love that. It’s one of my favorite parts of writing.
The reason I’ve been having issues this past week is because of character centric scenes. The characters talk about things—and it’s their emotional journeys, and I have a really hard time with that. I tend to oversimplify things and I don’t really flesh out my characters very well. I’m really bad about that. I know it’s something that I’ll have to work on once it comes to revising. But that’s something that will wait until my first major revision once I have a little bit of feedback from beta readers, so I can see what I need to develop, what I don’t need to develop.
One of the characters—Asad—he’s very secretive. He has a dark past, and you don’t really know a lot about him, and part of the story is the main character Shadiya finding out about his past. So, when he reveals bits and pieces of his past, it’s really difficult to write because he wants to tell her but doesn’t because it’s too painful for him or it’s something he hasn’t ever shared with anyone. Hopefully I’m doing a decent job so that when I go back to revise it’s not as bad as I think it is right now. I know this next week is going to be equally difficult because it’s going to have even more emotional kind of arcs—character relationships and things like that. The first part of the book is very plot centric and the second half is more character centric, so I’m having a harder time with the second half.
So that’s how writing has been going. Hopefully, I’ll reach my 10000 word goal this week, or at least 8000 writing 2000 a day. Maybe I can write a little more. We’ll see. I’ll let you know next Monday how this week went, and I guess that’s it for now. I hope you have a wonderful Labor Day, and I hope you weren’t’ too bored by me.
See you guys next week.