It’s getting done, slower than I’d like, but each day, new words are added and the story moves forward, paragraph, by paragraph, page by page. My latest WIP has been a real time sucker, a drain of minutes and hours, causing me to feel almost panicky when I have to stop because I have to eat or sleep, or whatever.
There were several false starts, like when I reached ten thousand words, twice, then read what I’d written, and twice, I deleted about three to four thousand words. There have been plot dilemma’s, character development snags, feasibility/plausibility angst, and constant assessment and reassessment of the overall story. Is it suspenseful, do I have something happening all the time? Am I getting lost in lengthy narrative, waxing poetic just because I’m more geared towards literary fiction?
Two months ago, to the day, I began this story and I did that typical goal setting that I work best by, one thousand words per day. I discovered pretty early on however, that if I was going to wipe out words by the thousands, that might not be the best way to work. At this point, if I get a thousand, great, if not, as long as I move it forward, and as long as I like what’s there, I’m happy.
I have almost twenty-two thousand words. And since, I like doing math, I did a bit of analysis. If I take twenty two thousand words and divide by sixty (days) that’s approximately three hundred and sixty six words per day. Slacker! I thought. Then I realized, if I added up all the words I’d deleted, tweaked, revised, I’d be well above one thousand per day. Huh. Well, okay. Maybe not a total slacker.
Yet, I feel like I’m only creepin’ along when I want to run. I want to hurry up and get the story done. I want to know with absolute certainty what is going to happen to my characters. At the same time, I want to do justice to the subject matter I’ve chosen, I want to live up to expectations of my agent and editor. And the thing is, they don’t care how long it takes, they only want something of quality that will sell. And they’ve even said, “take your time, have fun with it, don’t rush.”
Even so, I sometimes feel like someone just clicked on a stop watch, and the subtle tick tock sound of a clock gets in my head. And, I feel like I should be further along, like somehow, somewhere I’ve wasted time, and I don’t know where or how.
It’s self inflicted, but I’m driven by time…, are you?