It took me about a week, but I’ve finally finished the first scene of my novel! Yes, I know. Lame. 1,539 words! Wee! I can crank out a short story at a writing workshop no sweat. I do it all the time. Give me a writing topic, a half hour timer, and get out of my way! If I am under pressure, I can produce.
It’s much more difficult to slow the pace, fill in detail, and give characters personality and dialog. I’m not sure if I’m doing it well. But I’m doing it. I think my outline is strong. I’d like to get to a point where I can write one 1,500 word scene per day. I’ll shoot for 500 words a day to start. I’m flexing the muscle. It’ll get stronger.
My biggest weakness is self editing as I go. Stop, go back. Stop, go back. I need to let go of the words, let them flow. I want to march ahead. My writing cannot be perfect in the first draft. In fact, it should not be. This hurts my brain. I keep going back, moving words around, changing dialog. I’m looking up words in the thesaurus to see if there’s a better word. I’ll never make any progress if I don’t shake this awful editing tic.
My new task is to sketch out the next scene in a bulleted list to help push along my writing. I didn’t do this with the opening scene because I needed to get my characters grounded in a strange place. I needed to ponder. For a week or so. I think it’s good. I’m off to a good start.
Now, I need to drink some agua and head to bed. Agua is Mexican for wine.