I missed this blog post last night, so I’m doing two tonight. I got stuck down deep in the chapter I was writing and only tore myself away when I realized that I was misspelling every word–literally. The little red lines under the words were a clue–I leave the spell-checker on as I write because of this little quirk. I’m a pretty dyslexic guy, and the more tired I get, the more I flop letters and make number mistakes in orders of magnitude or in place transposition, and suchlike. Since my normal copy is almost typo-free and I am (a few troublesome words excepted) an exceptional speller (due, ironically, to the way I learned to cope with my dyslexia) when those little red lines start showing up a lot, I know I’m in trouble. Not too long after that happens, I start swapping around people’s names, and doing this any time I can’t remember a noun (it’s always nouns–verbs don’t do this to me):
[Name] scratched her head as she regarded the [noun]
Which makes my life hell on the proofreading pass. I get the betas asking me “what the hell are you talking about?” and I look at the manuscript and say: “Hell if I know.”
So all told, I only pulled down 1318 words yesterday, which is stupidly-small for the amount of time I spent on them (4 hours). Turns out that there are some writing skills I’m very rusty on. Particularly, multiple distinct POVs, juggling multiple intersecting plotlines, and writing scenes where there are more than three people in a conversation. These are things I got very good with in Down From Ten and Antithesis 1 & 2, and then…failed to practice for the next dozen or so books. Turns out it’s a perishable skill, and I’m going through a heavy-duty retraining regime with the beginning of this book.
As far as the rest of the day? Well, I spent it doing spring cleaning. I can’t overstate how deeply satisfying spring cleaning is.
So, here’s the damage.
Starting WC: 29,991
Finished WC: 31,309