02/14 – metrics

Destiny’s Story [draft 1]

opening count: 9122
closing count: 9818
page count: uncertain*
chapter count: n/a
weekly words: 1740
yearly words: 9818

current music: none

opening line:
After our hands touched again inside the popcorn bowl, James got up to put more movies into the player.

closing line:
Is it really rushing when two people have known each other their whole lives?

reason for stopping: time for bed

favorite phrase:
Besides, we hadn’t done so bad in the garage the other night.

oy vey phrase:
We laughed a lot.

left to write: tons

commentary: I’m still enjoying working on this story. Writing YA has been fun, even if I’m still uncertain about what it is I’m actually doing. I know what’s ‘proper’ for adult fiction, but YA is a whole other ballgame. Writing from Destiny’s point of view has been as enlightening as it’s been interesting. Am almost up to the point of ‘the accident’. If I’m remembering my notes right, it’s like two or three scenes after this current one.

Do people like these kinds of posts? What metrics aren’t on my list that interest you? What metrics are on my list that you don’t care to know?

*it’s all in bits and pieces at the moment.

nanowrimo – 3

Date: Thursday, September 25, 2003
Music: (haven’t decided yet)
Location: Mom’s attic

I couldn’t see, but I could hear Grandpa and Mick talking. Mick wanted to talk to me. Grandpa told him to sit down. By now I had reached the front door and had my hand on the antique glass knob. Mick won, for once, and came out into the hall. “Don’t touch me,” I said. I turned the doorknob.

I’m not going to hurt you,” he said, waving his hands in front of him.

For some reason, the gesture made me think of someone frantic to adjust the water in a shower. Maybe the mind does bizarre things when a person is afraid.

I watched Daddy and Grandpa go back into the living room as Mick shoved us out the door and onto the porch and sat us down on the top step. “I want to go home,” I said, grumpy. But who wouldn’t be grumpy about any of this? I can’t imagine anybody jumping up to celebrate at the news. ‘Whoohoo, I’m a vampire!’ And tossing around glitter and confetti. No. I looked at my uncle from the corners of my eyes. “If I find out you all are pulling some kind of joke–”

Mick raised a hand to cut me off. “Nobody’s joking.”

“Yeah, right.” From where I sat, my elbows leaned on my knees, the chipped gravel in the sweep looked more interesting than it had been since I was three.

“Why would any of us joke around about something like this? I mean, I know Dad likes to play tricks, but not with this kind of stuff.”

As much as I wanted to not believe him, Mick was right. Daddy and Steve joke around, too, but not about serious stuff. Okay, usually not about serious stuff. I’ve heard Mom yell at both of them, together and apart, for not being serious enough sometimes. And yes, Mom yells. She doesn’t raise her voice. She yells. I’m told she gets her temper from Grandpa. Still, I didn’t want to give in to all of this that easy. “So if all of this is real,” I said, “how come you and Chloë and Devon know all about it, and you’re all younger than me?”

“You’ll have to have that argument with my sister.”

“You leave Mom out of this!” I snapped.

“I can’t!” Mick snapped back. “She’s as much a part of this as everyone else.”

Not knowing what else to do, I hauled back and punched his shoulder. Before Mick could react, Daddy and Grandpa ran out to separate us. Mick and Daddy went back inside, and Grandpa said he and I should take a walk.

disclaimer: poetry and fiction snippet content are my own original content. unauthorized reproduction of any post content, without prior written permission, is in direct violation of applicable copyright laws.

nanowrimo – 2

Date: September 5, 2003
Music: Breaking Benjamin – Wish I May

Mom had the pantry door in the kitchen painted with blackboard paint when the house was built when I was little. She uses it to scribble random things–like WHY ME?–when she’s on the phone or to make a kind of grocery list.

Sometimes we’ll come through, and she’ll have written something like, TODAY I’M THANKFUL FOR–and we’ll all respond with something silly. Like one time, Daddy wrote BRUSSELS SPROUTS, and Steve put NO NECKTIES AT THE MARKET!!! My friends sometimes add stuff to it, too. Then of course are the times Mom thinks our house is Grand Central Station and writes so on the pantry door. Some smart-alec, usually Steve or Devon, will come through and list ticket prices and destinations. One time Devon put, “NARNIA,” and left off the ticket price. I added, “ONE MAGIC WARDROBE.” Which, of course, for almost a week after that, we all kept putting up bad Narnia jokes and puns.
Sometimes stuff like, “THREE MAGIC BEANS,” or, “NO LEAN,” or, “CURDS AND WHEY,” or “FOUR AND TWENTY BLACKBIRDS” show up like magic along with Mom’s grocery list.

Sometimes Mom and Steve, or Daddy and Mom, or Donna and Steve will write mushy love notes on the door. Or Mom will go out to Grandpa’s and leave a note that says, “GONE TO NARNIA. BACK SOON!”

Notes I don’t like? The ones that say, “DESTINY, DO YOUR LAUNDRY.” I always want to write back, “CAN’T STEVE DO IT?” Well, I did once, but Mom didn’t think it was very funny. I still had to do my own laundry. I don’t mind, though; Mom has a cool washing machine and dryer get up out in the mudroom. I also don’t like the ones that say, “DESTINY, DO YOUR HOMEWORK.” One time I wrote that I didn’t have any, and Steve wrote back, “A PASSENGER TRAIN LEAVES HARLAN AT 55MPH, HOW SOON WILL IT ARRIVE IN CORBIN?” Devon wrote back, “DAD, PASSENGER TRAINS STOPPED RUNNING IN THE 60S. GET REAL!”

Oh the fun we have! It’s a good thing we all love each other. (Mom says that a lot, too.)

And sometimes what gets put on the door is good enough that Mom takes a picture to keep. Someday somebody is going to find that folder on her computer hard drive and think we’re insane.

disclaimer: poetry and fiction snippet content are my own original content. unauthorized reproduction of any post content, without prior written permission, is in direct violation of applicable copyright laws.

nanowrimo – 1

Date: September 1, 2003
Music: Godsmack – Running Blind
Location: my bedroom, Baxter Kentucky

Mom suggested I start a journal or a blog. She even offered to get me a paid subscription on LiveJournal, but I’m not too wild about that idea. She said I need something to record my thoughts, feelings, impressions. A one subject notebook. A leather book like hers. She started journaling in seventh grade. I’ve tried thinking about twelve, thirteen, fourteen, and find I don’t want to think about it. Thank the gods I didn’t keep a journal then. It would probably be full of

~ I went to school.
~ Good thing I brought lunch today.
~ Jason Sizemore had food stuck in his braces.
~ Had to run a mile in gym.
~ Thomas Riley tripped Sally Baird in the lobby.
~ Broke a nail after school at piano lesson.

Then there’d be my birthday last year when my parents all told me I couldn’t date until my sixteenth birthday. Some birthday present. “We love you. You can’t date. Have some cake and ice cream.”

I don’t know. Maybe Mom’s right. Maybe there is something to this journaling thing. I spend a lot of time at my laptop anyway, so I thought I could just start something with Word. Maybe I can type in this one document until I’m 115! Maybe I’ll have a document that’s so big it won’t open any more! Eight squillion pages!

Yeah, yeah.

Blah, blah, blah.

disclaimer: poetry and fiction snippet content are my own original content. unauthorized reproduction of any post content, without prior written permission, is in direct violation of applicable copyright laws.

metrics: thursday may 19

Midnight’s Heir [draft #5]

yearly words: 26,239

current music: (movie on in background)

opening line: Her knees knocked together despite her position on the sofa.

closing line: His ebony eyes narrowed into slits. “If I was home right now, I’d beat him up myself.”

reason for stopping: end of chapter

favorite phrase: She hadn’t known time could be so lethargic.

left to write: oh, so much to edit!

commentary: I don’t like the beginning of this story now. I’m going to do to it basically what I did to Midnight several years ago: chop off so much of the beginning and just start over from scratch.

metrics: friday, may 6

opening count: 10,495
daily count: 4,224

current music: singing birds

opening line: Adam said, “Yes, sir.”

closing line: As her blood flowed into his mouth, he groaned.

reason for stopping: I would have kept going, but I was wiped out – and it was midnight! way time for bed.

favorite phrase: “You don’t know what you’re asking me to do.”

oy vey phrase: The night of the party, he paced his bedroom floor.

left to write: until I’m finished. I just don’t know where this is going yet.

commentary: I don’t expect to write one of these every day. Mostly because I don’t expect to write every day, and I don’t want my blog / my website to become nothing but a long list of metrics that no one else but me is interested in.

I’m just happy to be writing again. Two years of piddling and nothing is entirely too long! I woke up yesterday morning, and it was like the dam that started in my head in mid-2009 had been broken wide open. I couldn’t wait to pick up my pen and get going.

It’s wonderful to get the words, any words, flowing and down on paper again. I’m never quite me when I’m not able to write. I missing my writing group last night after telling them, yes, that would be my first night back after a short absence. I warned a couple of members early in the day that I was writing and didn’t want to stop until I had to. Thankfully, they’re an understanding bunch.

At the time I’m writing this, I already have 4224 words for today (this post wraps up my yesterday). But I’m not finished, so I continue on!

2010 writing metrics

Every year for the last five or six years, I’ve set myself a writing goal of 150 thousand words. More than once, I’ve gotten twice this many words. This year, though, by the middle of May I worried whether I was going to get any words at all. On May 30, I wrote 768 words. It all, as ‘they’ say, went from there. On October 19, I wrote the 768 words that got me to 150,052 – 52 words over goal. I’m currently at 3822 words over goal. We’ll see where it goes from here.

julnawrimo tally

tally for july ~> 29398

This doesn’t take into account all of the editing I did. And I believe, unless something else crops up somewhere, I’m down to rewriting the last scene of this book. (Then I get to go back and edit the “April through March” chapters)