Wednesday, November 28, 2007

"Finished" Chapter 2

I had a good morning, especially compared to what I expected. I woke up late and very sore from basketball and expected not to be able to focus on work much. I ended up working a full three hours, through a couple of breaks in concentration and the temptation to stop.

For example, at the 90 minute mark, even though I wasn't at a natural stopping point like transitioning out of a scene that took a lot of attention, my brain just insisted on drifting to other matters. Checking email and so on. I decided to make myself some more coffee and see if I could come back to it. (I have a regular amount I try to drink in the morning before starting work and no more after that, but I've been adding more and more extra doses throughout the day, starting earlier and earlier.) 15 minutes later I was back at the desk and plowing ahead.

Later on, nearing the end of the chapter, at the climactic scene, I started to feel like it would take more concentration than I had so late in the morning, but I was able to get into it again.

That took me to the end of the chapter. It started out as 23 pages a few weeks ago and now it's 42 pages. That in itself isn't necessarily a good sign. All that length probably means clutter and poor pacing, and I can see that third draft if I ever get to it is going to be about cutting it all down quite a bit.

So the chapter is "finished" but probably only in the sense that I declared chapter one finished prematurely a couple times. I think I need to have my wife read it and give me a reality check and then go at it again, which will probably take another week.

That means that without the break for Thanksgiving this chapter is going to take around 3 weeks, which is really really scary. It's all good and necessary work, but I can't get over how long the journey is.

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