DTD — 469 words, and the not-quite-dead-yet hired gun

Oh, man. Threw all sorts of mad twists into the story tonight—hadn’t planned for any of them (just planned for the concept of twists here) and they showed up in lines like chorus girls, kicking their feet in synch and grinning like loons.

The story edges into the evil of the Balegarn, hinted at and now shown used against someone we’ve had reason to like.

It was a good run. It took a long time, but it was a good run.

How about you?

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and indie-publish my new ones.

54 comments… add one
  • Julia GD Jul 30, 2009 @ 13:56

    This week is mostly re-writes and corrections. I will need to submit 20 pages for group critique for my class before Friday.
    I feel like an emotional wreck the whole week, I think stressing so much about what people will think of my writing is the thing that gives me headaches. The problem is that I know they all will say nice and positive things, and I know, my writing is not too bad. But I can’t help thinking how they might read it and cringe at my mistakes or bad descriptions or stupid dialogues or the plot itself. URGH! Anyway, this week, from Monday till Wednesday, 3652 new words and about 3000 re-writes (corrections etc). I am exhausted. πŸ™

  • Danielle Lanois Jul 29, 2009 @ 21:55

    432 words on my first night of officially participating. I’ve been following this thread for a while, and I realized that I’ve been wanting to work on this story more. This is a good excuse!

    The plot isn’t the best, it’s not planned at all, and it turns out that the character who was going to be my MC’s love interest is a smarmy bastard, but I’m having so much fun writing it! The characters are finally starting to come alive, and I love it.

    • Sarah Collins Jul 29, 2009 @ 23:45

      Congrats on a great start and welcome! When the characters take over like that, the coolest things can happen. I love it, too! =c)

  • Roo Jul 29, 2009 @ 21:27

    Thank you, lovely people, for being here through the whining.
    Two shorts down; two to go.

    (How is it you can still feel just as stuck after you’ve *just* finished something? Anyone? Bueller? πŸ˜€ )

    • Nancy Jul 29, 2009 @ 23:19

      Congrats on the 2 down! That’s terrific progress.

  • Gabby Jul 29, 2009 @ 20:54

    I have about 500 handwritten words of backstory and still going strong. YAY. My lighbulb from yesterday has had me feeling elated all day. Still got too many story ‘black holes’ to fill in. I seem to fill two and 10 more show up, scowling at me.

    I noticed people asking before about what tools they used for writing, so I thought I’d share mine, newbie though I am. I don’t happen to like ywriter because I prefer more bells and whistles. I use word docs in a folder and hyperlink them to an excel doc. It makes reordering my scenes a breeze. And it’s easy to update a particular scene– just click on the hyperlink and get to whatever scene I want. (I setup formulas in the excel doc to keep track of my daily, scene and total word counts.)

    The program I am in love with right now is One Note. (it totally lacks word count though…grumble, grumble). I use it to organize all of my backstory and it has some great features… ability to search and create separate sections… you can flag things for later and, on the fly, generate a list of things you flagged throughout the entire project (with what type of flag it is (impt, to do, to research, etc, etc). I’ll stop now. I just highly recommend checking it out.

  • SCBrazil Jul 29, 2009 @ 19:44

    I missed a few days and, as always, found it difficult to get back on track. I refuse to give up on this one though and knowing you people are here helps.
    I’m still working out where to take the thing and feel at a dead-end. But the only way out of that I suppose, is by walking.
    I did all of 75 words last night, more to keep me in it than anything else. On any other project, I would have done nothing so in a way I’m secretly pleased.
    I know a new wave of inspiration will come along soon so I know the real challenge is right now – to keep plugging away until it does.

    • Nancy Jul 29, 2009 @ 21:10

      Been there, done that myself. Remember we’re all here cheering for you! Keep plugging, even if it’s only ten words. Momentum is the key, for me anyway.

      • SCBrazil Jul 30, 2009 @ 21:44

        Cheers Nancy.
        I’ve got the pen in ‘hot’ mode right now.

  • Stormlyht Jul 29, 2009 @ 19:36

    So I forgot to post my word count the last time I wrote, but today I have 4392 across two different stories and I did a certain amount of editing as well. Really wanted to finish the chapter I was working on last but the darned Florida mosquito’s chased me out of my writing hole (I was outside of course…). Ah well, I’ll be finishing it tomorrow no doubts about that. I’m really pumped about everything, finally got out of my fighting scene on the one project and I’m enjoying writing my MC in the second going slightly crazy with anger and killing off townsfolk… Hee hee….

  • Dawn K. Jul 29, 2009 @ 15:25

    A difficult start for me today. I met with my writing group last night and received a ton of negative feedback for Dragon Touched, my current project. Some of it was helpful but other bits would require me to completely trash the entire story as they strike at the core concept. I know that by writing what I love I’m limiting my audience, but it’s difficult when people I respect tell me I’m writing about the impossible. Or when they feel that my characters (warriors) come off as a bunch of wimps. Now I don’t know if they are right or if we simply have a difference of opinion.

    At any rate, the story lives on. I’ve written 1,133 words, a bit short of my 1,250 word goal, but I’m okay with that.

    • Lisa R Jul 29, 2009 @ 18:00

      Dawn, I am very young in terms of writing. In fact, I don’t even think I have reached the crawl stage. I have had people critique my work and the suggestions and comments are so very hard to work with, but are very needed. Definitely keep writing!

      I will say that in physical years, I am not young. I have been in the military for 19 years. Civilian friends of mine see me as a modern warrior which makes me laugh. I am a huge wimp. I would be one of the last “warriors” anyone would want in battle. My husband is a soldier of 23 years. He is my complete opposite. He spent a year in Iraq and came back much harder. It may be good to do a little research, maybe interview a veteran. When I write anything military, I turn to my husband for help. These are just a couple of thoughts and ideas. Sorry if I became a little wordy, soldiers are very near and dear to my heart.

      • Dawn K. Jul 30, 2009 @ 15:31

        Thank you, I have decided to do just that. I also spent the day online doing some research. Although my setting is fantasy there are things that cross all borders.

  • Kerry Jul 29, 2009 @ 11:41

    I’ve decided to join in with a goal of 250 words minimum, 6 days a week. I’ve never written anything of substantial length before (by which I mean I’ve never gone past chapter 2), so I’m hoping this will help with my new project. πŸ˜€

    I wrote 1095 words today. Introduced an important new character, who was just as fun to write as I hoped he would be. My MC is now so irritated that he’s forgotten to be scared.

    I have to say, I’m excited about being a part of WABWM. I’m sure it will keep me motivated when I feel like giving up. Thanks Holly!

    • Sarah Collins Jul 29, 2009 @ 12:09

      Congratulations on a great start. Here’s to a chapter 3 on the horizon!

  • Dena C. Jul 29, 2009 @ 11:31

    740 words for me yesterday. I wrote for a little while in the morning, then my daughter and I went swimming for an hour and a half, played ball in the park, and did a bunch of other fun summer stuff so it was a pretty full day. I don’t know how much writing I’ll get done today as it is housework day.

  • Belle Jul 29, 2009 @ 11:16

    Sorry to bother, but I posted a comment earlier and it says it is “awaiting moderation.” I have not seen this before. Any thoughts on why its stuck?

    • Jessica Jul 29, 2009 @ 15:19

      Length? (Just a guess, sorry)

      • Belle Jul 29, 2009 @ 17:21

        Could be, but not sure. Other posts are much longer. Could just be random.

        • Gabby Jul 29, 2009 @ 20:30

          It happened to me on my second post but a few minutes later it was gone and the comment is there.

    • Dawn K. Jul 29, 2009 @ 20:33

      That happened to me the very first time I posted, but it hasn’t happened since. I waited a bit and it was up though.

  • Kait Nolan Jul 29, 2009 @ 10:59

    Well Monday was lousy. A measly 30 words. Yesterday was better. 558. They weren’t fantastic words, but they were progress, so I’m happy enough with them. I seem to be sort of stagnated on moving forward and instead I’m filling in holes earlier in the plot. It’s progress either way and must be done.

  • Lisa R Jul 29, 2009 @ 10:22

    640 words yesterday most of which were done at lunch. I am surprised that such a short amount of time is actually gettting me 300 to 500 words. I did end with my MC hitting a “bump in the road.” I am not sure what to do with her and the throught of writing all the boring things has me hesitating. But then, she has to live through it.

  • Minze Jul 29, 2009 @ 10:22

    I got 590 words and a surprise. I love it when writing just happens. I let my characters loose on the page and it’s like an engine’s revving up and all the highways of the world are waiting for us.

  • Nancy Jul 29, 2009 @ 10:11

    384 words for Tuesday. Managed to catch some stomach bug that’s going around. Left work early to rest, but still feel like I got hit by a mack truck.

    Tomorrow (or rather today) is another day. Saddle up!

    • Dawn K. Jul 29, 2009 @ 13:04

      Hope you feel better very soon!

      • Nancy Jul 29, 2009 @ 17:29

        Thanks, Dawn!

  • Cyndi Jul 29, 2009 @ 9:59

    154 words. I hadn’t written anything in 2 in a half weeks. I ‘ve been making excuses about being too busy to write anything, but I know if I make it a priority I’m really not too busy. I haven’t made it out of the first chapter. I have no idea how I did this before. I have just received my friend’s comments on my first manuscript and it looks like I have a lot of editing to do. Her comments are fair, but they still sting. Hey, we’re still friends! Hopefully I’ll write more tonight, but I have a paper on archetypes due tomorrow for summer school…

  • Deb Jul 29, 2009 @ 9:55

    Haven’t been here to post in a while, because I haven’t had a ton of time to write for a while. πŸ™ I got very caught up in a project last week and managed only a few hundred for the whole week. Intended to catch up on the weekend, but I was drained from the project. However, between Monday and Tuesday I wrote 10k AND finished the first draft!! Now I’m taking a few days to plan before starting the sequel. I’ll keep posting as I write more though. πŸ™‚

    • Khena Jul 29, 2009 @ 10:02

      Congrats on finishing your draft!!!

  • Khena Jul 29, 2009 @ 9:36

    I’m back, sunburned, sore and sleep deprived, but home at last =) I wrote 81 words of dragonfly, but did 500+ on a differnt story idea I was playing with since i was distracted. I liked it at the time, but think it’s been done too many times, and I coundn’t do it any better. But the MC’s best friend is interesting me, so maybe I can screw with her life next time I want to explore new waters. Monday, I didn’t write at all, I was busy chasing my children around the amusement park and rattling my bones on rides during their short nap. During the ride home, 825 words just poured out of me during the half hour I sat with my laptop in the car. Hopefully today it will flow as easily

  • Carly Jul 29, 2009 @ 9:23

    Only got 196 last night when I realised that the scene I was trying to write actually isn’t a scene but an added bit from the scene before. But in working this out and in looking back at the last couple of scenes that have felt really iffy to me I finally had a breakthrough. My MC’s best friend is completely not the person I thought she was… she’s super freakin’ cool! Like a spy… I love her more than ever now. And I know what’s missing, I’m so happy right now.

  • Belle Jul 29, 2009 @ 8:33

    I got wrapped up in research yesterday, over 2 hours of reading and surfing — about Medieval and Renaissance Italy. I found a document online in Italian (in the Google archive project) that was written pretty close to my time period. I am translating it with Google language tools, though not correct I am sure, it is close enough to get the gist. It has given me many ideas on how to proceed. Words today about 250, on my stystem plus Day 1 list, no new words on my novel.

  • Jessica Jul 29, 2009 @ 8:31

    1098 unexpected but welcome. Got me to the scene I really want to write but now I’m not so sure if I can… it’s going to be very action intense and I want to make sure I get it right.

    In other news… tried to rescue a goose last night that had a plastic bag wrapped around its leg. Poor thing. We almost got it but it ducked out at the last second. City and wildlife ppl won’t do anything unless we can bring it in. So we’re going to try again tonight. He was quite friendly though, which is good since those things can be nasty! Wish me luck!

    • Carly Jul 29, 2009 @ 9:24

      Good luck with the goose! Poor little thing.

  • The Pencil Neck Jul 29, 2009 @ 7:58

    I’m taking today off. I still feel like it’s yesterday. I’m jet-lagged. It’s about 7 am Texas time and 5:30 pm India time. My company had me working almost as soon as I landed.

    I got nothin.

  • Roma Jul 29, 2009 @ 7:34

    500 words as usually yesterday, mostly my MC’s thoughts and reactions to the ordeal he’s just been through.

    I’m an organic linear plotter, so I just go with the flow.

  • Julie Jul 29, 2009 @ 7:07

    I’ve been away for a bit, on holiday and then had to have some dental work done πŸ™ I haven’t done any writing as my holiday was a horse trek across Ireland & I thought a nice break might do me good. Ireland is a beautiful country and being around the horses all day has given me a lot of inspiration for my horse story.

    I’m sad to be back (& back to work tomorrow πŸ™ ) but I’m looking forward to getting back to my writing.

    Congratulations on everyones progress & I hope you enjoy the progress to come.

  • Ieva Jul 29, 2009 @ 3:43

    600+. Writing in the 1st person about somebody else struggling with her emotions that the narrator cannot figure out is sorta mindboggling. And I have similar scene planned for today.

    • laurel Jul 29, 2009 @ 14:43

      Hi Ieva

      This sounds intense, unnerving and fascinating. What kind of mindboggling?
      Journey well….

  • Cat (from HtTS) Jul 29, 2009 @ 3:26

    157 words and then the kids interfered. Boy, will I be glad when they are back in school this time next week (although I did enjoy the holidays they just weren’t very productive).

  • Brent B. Jul 29, 2009 @ 3:09


    adding to mad twist list:
    Drink granny’s tea and fight rednecks
    Ride horse to Broken Stone Mountain and go “whoooo”
    Wiggle fingers for concentration

  • Greg Jul 29, 2009 @ 2:54

    541 from me, with a healthy chunk of foreshadowing…

  • Leah Jul 29, 2009 @ 2:01

    I’ve forgotten to post the past two days because I’ve been so into my novel! I just finished a scene where my heroine tells a bit of her story–an important bit. It gives my hero a window into who she really is, and why she’s frantically running around his vessel checking and rechecking life pods.

    3407 words from the past two days πŸ™‚

  • Dana Jul 29, 2009 @ 1:56

    My day was disrupted by One of THOSE Headaches. The kind where the Reaper’s scythe would be a kiss of mercy.

    However, I’ve only got two more lessons before I’m up to where I should be on 2YN and I plan to keep right on going.

    • Nancy Jul 29, 2009 @ 10:06

      THOSE kind of headaches make the idea of trepaning completely understandable!! Hope you feel better soon!

  • KQ Jul 29, 2009 @ 1:08

    506 for me. Too tired to do any more. I really liked what I got, though.

  • Brian P. Jul 29, 2009 @ 0:44

    I got 310 words tonight, and scene two is done. So what makes a priest go to a tavern in the middle the night and start drinking? He had a vision of the world ending, and soon. Tomorrow, a priest and a former wizard are going to the City of Seven Nails to discuss the issue with the wizard’s council.

  • Larkk Jul 29, 2009 @ 0:34

    Novel reconnaissance, which was enlightening, I think. Excited to start writing some back story tomorrow.
    About 600 more words about the pet fish though.

    (Will need much editing, although I’ve seen worse, believe it or not)

  • Jamie D. Jul 29, 2009 @ 0:30

    Just finished 514 words for tonight – and reached 10,022 total! Very motivating to leap that first 10k for me…

    The story is going well…I think. Better with the scenes I’m adding to the beginning.

    Off to bed…

  • Clare K. R. Miller Jul 29, 2009 @ 0:18

    674 words for me today. I just discovered that I’m going to have to split the narrative. How about that. The MC’s cousin has explained that they need to go to two different places. I’m over 20k into the novel and soon I’m going to write the first scene from a different character’s perspective. That may have to change in the rewrite, but I guess I won’t worry about it for now.

  • Sarah Collins Jul 29, 2009 @ 0:16

    Tuesday brought 598 words, but the exciting part is way back in the last chapter – that treacherous one I had so much trouble with. I finally turned it over to my crit partner with a long explanation of why I wasn’t thrilled with it because I couldn’t take it from the hero POV. She just looks at me (okay, we’re talking e-mail here so I don’t actually know this, but I swear she gave me a Look) and asked “Why not?” So I glared at her (this I know for a fact) and realized I really didn’t have a good reason not to do it from his POV. In fact, it would really strengthen my story. Score another one for her – heck, I’ve lost count. So I’m looking forward to adding to that chapter tomorrow. In the meantime, I’m about to hit 40k words and that just astonishes me.

    • Larkk Jul 30, 2009 @ 7:55

      Lots of words AND positive feedback! Does life get any better than that? Cheering you on!

  • Talina Jul 28, 2009 @ 23:57

    Wow, you really know how to move a story Holly. I feel just as excited about my wip as well. My word count for the night is 274 which finishes my first scene and a murder. I can’t wait until tomorrow so I can move on to the second scene.

    Happy writing

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