Novel Update #10 – Relaunching after Three Months

Congratulations to all y’alll who participated in NaNoWriMo and its spinoffs in November! Nano and I don’t get along at all, but if you got anywhere near your goals, awesome!

What Dreams is at 25,522 words. The outline board looks the same, but should warrant a new picture next month.


So, if you’ve been reading this blog since August, you know I wasn’t able to write most of August, then spent September, October, and half of November working on my senior thesis. I didn’t abandon the novel completely, but that’s three and a half months, give or take. Ugh!

I did a full read-through of everything I’d written so far. And, well… It was weird. The tone was markedly different than what I remember, almost flip, and in reader-mode I found myself wondering if the hero was a villain. The tone part, I don’t know about. I may want to do some heavy editing to that. I don’t like the flippancy. The distance-from-hero aspect, though… I kinda like it! Skuyler’s supposed to come across a bit shady, and I’m honestly surprised that it actually happened. I totally didn’t do it this way on purpose, but it is having roughly the effect I wanted. It made for very surreal reading.

I did make a few cosmetic edits as I went along — I have some super annoying stylistic habits and affectations I’d never noticed before — but mostly I’m just noting down these impressions to edit later. There are a lot of obvious problems, but nothing insurmountable, and I have no idea what I’ll need from this first section until I have all the rest of the sections finished. I’ve noticed that I write in a spiral that way — I have to write everything before I can write anything, and the best way for me to actually do that is to spiral. I do the same thing for papers, blog posts, and learning stuff. (Does that make sense? Should I do a post about spiraling? I think I’m getting to where every thought that passes through my head finishes with “Should I do a post about that?”)

Anyway, from the day I did the read-through to the end of the year, there are forty days. I’ve got grad school stuff to do, but nothing that should take days and days away from novel-writing time, so I just wanna see how much I can get done in those forty days. I’ve got a personal milestone I wanna hit!

Supplemental reading: Rocket Girl Vol. 1 by Brandon Montclare and Amy Reeder

Rocket Girl volume 1 coverThis doesn’t have a whole lot to do with WD, but the blogosphere recommended it to me and I wanted to give a little update that I did read it! Rocket Girl is a graphic novel from Image Comics about a teen cop from the future who goes back in time to the 80s to fix the timeline. I didn’t love it as much as everyone else seems to, I thought Rocket Girl was annoying in the beginning and it had script problems, BUT I did really enjoy the book. She’s a really well-drawn character and I loved her by the end. It’s a great choice for girls who like comics, and I thought the time travel elements were well-thought-out… I do have some time-travel stuff in WD, so that’s something I want to keep in mind, but it’s more “discussion/theme” than actual time travel for me.

11 thoughts on “Novel Update #10 – Relaunching after Three Months

  1. Yeah, I’ve noticed a lot of problems in my writing while re-reading it too. In my earlier drafts, I used the word “as” way too much, and also started way too many sentences with characters’ names or pronouns. In most cases, “as” can be replaced by several more specific words, like “since”, “while” and other similar words. Some people tend to write overly long sentences and I usually have the opposite problem, writing too many smaller sentences thus creating a lack of variety.

    At the same time, it’s always nice when something turns out better than you expected, or it doesn’t work out the way you planned but is somehow better as a result.

    Everyone has their own stylistic problems to work through, and part of the fun is overcoming them. The challenge is to not worry about them to much while you’re still working on your first draft. It’s hard to shut off your inner critic.

    I was interested in rocket girl when it came out but I never really read it. Your description makes it sound like it’s worth a read so I may just have to check it out sometime. I may be a guy, but I’m all for supporting female characters and creators. In my series I’m trying to keep the balance fairly even between major male and female characters, with the series main character being a woman.


    1. Heh, I use the word “was” way too much, among other things. Too much description. I’m not worrying much about the draft right now… I’m actually more bothered by the fact that my blog posts are probably full of really annoying things and I have no idea!

      I certainly recommend Rocket Girl, not just to ladies! 🙂 It really had a shaky start with me, but I loved the art, and by the end I really loved the characters too. Volume 2 is supposed to start publishing next summer.



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