Wednesday, June 14, 2006

W1K: 20K edition!

Last night's writing produced a thousand words, bringing the total word count on Wetsilver up to 20,000. Yay! That's roughly only a fifth of the way through the book, give or take, but it's a significant psychological milestone for me. Except for the wretched, not-quite-famous-enough-to-be-infamous Broken Balance, every novel I've ever seriously started tended to fizzle out somewhere in the 15-20,000 word range. Reaching 20K without any significant hiccups is encouraging. The fact that I started this novel reclaimation project back on May 24 and have worked steadily and productively on it since then is also encouraging. That's four weeks, and I'm averaging 5,000 words a week--exactly on my arbitrary, self-imposed productivity target. At this rate--barring any inspired bursts of productivity or major writing disruptions--I'll have 60K words in the bank by Armadillocon and have the whole thing finished by September, with more than a month to spare before World Fantasy rolls around. Knock wood.

Here's some of last night's production. Again, we're seeing Jachym come out of the shock of recent days and start to assert himself more. Also, the relationship between him and Ctibor is developing differently than I'd originally envisioned it.
Three times they emptied the coach and pushed it up a stairstep of boulders when the horses couldn't manage on their own. After the third time, with the day's shadows growing long, Ctibor announced they'd make camp there, under the shelter of a low cliff. The location troubled Jachym.

"Um... Ctibor?" he said finally, having screwed up his courage for twenty minutes before approaching the older man. "I mean no disrespect to you, sir, but you see... well, is this really a good place to camp?"

Ctibor eyed him. "What do you mean, kid?"

"I just thought, you know, this might be a bad site." Jachym dearly wished to be someplace else. Wished that he hadn't managed to work up his courage. "You and the Tsukr, you're not from dry lands, right? So, ah, you might not know that dry streams don't always stay that way. Not with storms about like they have been. Calfa--he's my cousin--Calfa and me once got cut off by a dry stream that rose higher than my chin in the time it takes to shell a sand scute."

Ctibor nodded his head thoughtfully. "You might not be as dumb as you look, after all," he said, then looked upstream. As he turned, his overcoat folded back to expose his hip. On his belt hung an ornate hilt of ivory inlaid with enamel. It sported an elaborate hand guard of intertwined metalwork that shone like gold. But there was no blade attached. Jachym swallowed and tried not to stare. Where was the scorpion-tailed blade?

"This bed we're following isn't just dry, kid. It's dead. The river found a new course long ago."

"How can that be? Rivers don't just... change like that."

Ctibor's jaw clenched, and something akin to regret flickered in his eyes. "They don't, do they?" He sighed. "That's something you'll have to take up with the Tsukr."

Posting my writing progress on Gibberish has helped me maintain my commitment, I suspect. With so many eyes looking over my entries every day--even if most of them come here looking for chupacabra pics--I feel a profound sense of failure if I don't have progress to post daily. I'm even thinking of setting up a tangential blog to host my writing posts exclusively. I don't know about anyone else, but I think I'd find it quite useful.

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
20,000 / 90,000

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