Novel #2 Progress: Sick Days

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My immune system let me down and I caught one horrific cold last week. I dubbed it “The Inconsiderate Virus” because not only did it knock me down from writing, but it was enough to pull me out of my day job for two days (I never, ever call in sick to work!). While I lost more than a few writing days, my muse was not one to stay down for very long. I still managed to get a little work done on Novel #2.

Word Count Progress:

Draft #1 Word Count:

  • Start Word Count: 37,696
  • End Word Count: 39,221
  • Total: 1,525

Draft #2 Revised Word Count:

  • Start Word Count: 38,614
  • End Word Count: 40,378
  • Total: 1,764

Writing Process Notes:

  • It’s never wise to try and write when your system is flooded with cold medicine, so I had to leave my draft alone for a few days. There is nothing worse than being stuck at home with loads of time, but no ability to sit down and write. I swear, this is every writer’s nightmare.
  • When I was able to get back into revising, I got a to section that brought back some wonderful memories. I am currently working on the chapters I wrote during my extended stay in London. Memories of rain, my favorite coffee shop, museums, and green parks came flooding back as if it were only yesterday that I tread through my second home. As I look back on those sections, I can definitely see how my experiences in London shaped the overall course of the novel. It was there that I made some big decisions about where the story was going to go and how my characters would evolve.
  • Last week, I mentioned how a visit to the British Museum helped me construct a traveling exhibit for my novel. Here are three sculptures that served as inspiration in more ways than one:
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Greek Exhibit at the British Museum
Photo by: c.b.w. 2011

Novel Tidbit:

Point-of-view and Tense:

  • Normally, I find it very natural to write in third-person and past tense. However, when I began writing Novel #2,  I made the decision to write in first-person and present tense. Sometimes I wonder why I made that choice, seeing as there are a number of challenges in writing from one person’s point of view and presenting the story “in the moment.”
  • All I have to do is look to my muse to reaffirm my reasoning for telling the story only from Amanda’s eyes and letting her story play out in the present. From the very first sentence, Amanda’s voice has been the one telling me what to write, so I have no choice but to stick to her vantage point. As for tense, one of the major themes of the novel is the idea of living in the moment and embracing life. This theme ties into Ian’s true identity and each character’s journey to break free of their obstacles. The use of present tense allows me integrate this theme into every page without drilling it into the reader in an annoying way. In a way, the tense tells the story just as much as Amanda and Ian do.

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c.b.w. 2013

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21 thoughts on “Novel #2 Progress: Sick Days

  1. I often think that those who don’t have the opportunity or desire to visit museums miss out on so much beauty and inspiration. It fascinates the tangling up of “real life” and fiction writing. Take care of you.

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    • Some of my best travel memories come from museums. They are truly amazing places and those who do not cherish them are missing out on so much.

      I’m feeling much better now. I took the weekend off to relax and it did a world of good. 🙂

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  2. I’m glad you’re feeling better. I adore museums. In fact, one of my all-time favourite Christmas presents was a year membership to the ROM in Toronto. I worked just up the street from it and would go hang out in my favourite exhibit before work or if I had an extended lunch break.

    They are incredible buildings.

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  3. I posted a blog yesterday about the use of present versus past tense; your point that “The use of present tense allows me integrate this theme into every page without drilling it into the reader in an annoying way” sounds like a great reason to use the present tense, which I think is difficult to do well. I hope you’ll share an example and perhaps consider a guest post on my blog about this?

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  4. Get well soon! And it looks like this flu issue is worldwide; I’d thought it was confined to my work area only! 😦 Good luck with the new novel, I’ll be looking out for the teasers when you’re ready! 🙂

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  5. Is that the museum where you lost then found your camera?….I lived your London adventure, vicariously of course, through your blog posts. Always enjoy hearing how you are still inspired by that trip. Hope you are feeling better.

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    • I loved reading about your adventures in and around the museum. 🙂

      For Novel #2, I love first person. For other projects, not so much. I think the piece itself dictates what point of view is appropriate.

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