Monday, January 31, 2011

New scene and tentative schedule

I wrote a new scene today totaling 1,000 words. That's the biggest new chunk that I have planned, though I wouldn't be surprised if during the rewrite I discover problems that make me develop scenes that long. But the outline calls for smaller additions here and there from now on.

That puts me one day behind the schedule I mentioned in the middle of last week. Oh, well. We're getting record snowfalls this winter, by the way, and it's been incredibly disruptive to every kind of schedule, not to mention just plain distracting. Wild weather has a way of making you want to look at the window all day and to dig around in the cupboards for comfort food.

From this point on, I expect to be tackling issues in the typescript in order. I'll start with the first scene and move through the book. I don't have any reliable way to guess how long the first rewrite (draft 2) will take.

But I'll venture a schedule anyway using this dubious logic: the book is outlined on a total of 55 note cards representing 55 episodes or events. Let's say it averages out to 55 scenes, even though some note cards elongate the time represented, and some of the note cards foreshorten the time represented. I haven't done a real account, but let's assume that 1/2 the cards have notes about some kind of significant revision that will require me to read the scene over carefully and think about it. Let's assume that on average that will exhaust the energy of one writing session, and that I average 5 sessions a week. That's 27 working days or 5 1/2 weeks starting tomorrow. Round up to make it 6 weeks starting from today.

That makes March 11 my target date to finish the second draft.

Here's an even more tentative schedule for the step after that. I'll make the next draft a polishing draft and try to cover 30 pages per working day. Roughly 2 1/2 weeks of that would give me a target of March 31 to finish that third draft. Then I'll have to move on to the serious and difficult task of reducing the length. Let's say I finish that next pass by the end of the college semester, which is the middle of May.

In other words I'm giving myself about 15 weeks to work through it three times and make three different kinds of rewrites and revisions with the hope that it will be in excellent shape by the end of that time and ready to start sharing with readers other than my wife.

That's a hell of a plan. It makes as much sense as any other plan and has about as much chance of working, which is not much.

No comments: