Tuesday, July 7, 2015

My writing efforts in June.

I wrote more words of my novel in June than May, even though I started using Facebook again. I had a rule of not logging on to Facebook until I had written at least 500 words. So on some days I did not even logon to it. But I developed the habit of stopping writing not long after I hit the 500 word mark, so I could play on Facebook. On 26 days during the month I achieved my goal of 500 words, only on two days did I do more than 600 words. My best day was 1089 words. All up, I wrote 15,488 words for the month. An average of 516 words a day.

I have written about 102,000 words of the novel, and I about halfway through the fifth and final part. I had hoped to have finished the first draft by now, but I have decided to expand the final part. The decision to do that came about because previously I have read novels with characters on a physical journey arriving at their destination and then the novel suddenly ends, with a disappointed me wanting them to explore their destination more thoroughly. So I have decided not to disappoint a reader like me by doing the exploring.

I had pictured the novel as a stand-alone, but ideas for a sequel set 20 years later keep on popping into my head, so there will be a sequel. But first, I have to re-draft this manuscript. Before that I want to write a short story for a Christmas anthology that is being put together by one of my writing groups. A first draft is required by end of August. Now I just have to come up with an idea. 


Once again, I critiqued a story a week for critters.org during June. I read a story from a writer on the Australian Writers Forum, intending to critique it, when technology problems intervened: my internet was slowing down and dropping out. I am still not sure what caused the problem even though I was reasonably systematic about trying to fix it. First, I replaced the splitter, that didn’t work, then I replaced the long telephone cable with a shorter one, the web dropped out just after I connected it. Then I bought a new top of the range router/wifi thingy, as my router was about seven years old and the wifi about five. But the new router/wifi would not even connect to Westnet/iinet, my ISP.  I rang them, and spent two hours on the phone, it still didn’t work. They said they would try a few things and asked me to keep my old router and wifi connected. They said they would ring back in two hours or so. Two and a half hours later I got impatient and re-connected the new router/wifi. It worked. Five days later and it has not dropped out and is slightly faster than what it was before it slowed. iinet did ring back the next day, 26 hours later. They said they had fiddled with things, but I am none the wiser as to whether my new router/wifi is more stable, or something they did made my connection more stable.


I did not do much reading during June as I was too tired at night. Fortunately, that tiredness has receded in the past week or so, no idea why. I am about two thirds of the way through Amnesia, Peter Carey’s very enjoyable romp through 20th century Australian politics and history. It’s narrator is a very committed writer who is using an old portable typewriter to type even though he burnt his fingers trying to retrieve a manuscript thrown into a fire by its pissed-off subject.

Hopefully some of his commitment will rub off on me, enabling me to finish the first draft of my current manuscript in July.