Kelly Maher


Mid-book-itis

I’m coming up on the midpoint of Project Ulna. At least, midpoint in terms of first draft word count. All I can say is I’m glad I’ll be editing it 🙂 When it comes to the storytelling aspect of writing, you need to watch your pacing around the midpoint. If it’s going too slowly, there’s a slump and readers are lost. There’s also a bit of a slump when it comes to the actual writing of the novel. As the author, you’ve been working on this project for so long, and you have to spend just as much time ahead of you in finishing it. At the beginning you’re flush with the joy of a new story, and toward the end you’re racing for the finish line. In the middle? You twiddle your thumbs. You think of new ways to procrastinate. You convince yourself the WIP is a steaming pile of shit, and if only you could just play in the pristine sandbox of that new story idea that hit you as you were trying to beat your high score in Angry Birds. Life irritations do not help either as all you want to do is push the writing off for another day. The hard part of when you give yourself a break you really do need is picking things back up and continuing on with the work. Pushing myself at the pace I’ve been attempting is very tiring. I can easily write 1000 words a day, but doing that for ninety days straight is a whole other beast. The last few weeks have shown that this may not be a sustainable pace for me. With my next project, and probably going forward with PU from this point, I will need to build in weekends of some kind. Discovering this about myself as a working writer is one of the goals of writing PU in this time frame–beyond having a completed first draft. And, if nothing else, I have over 40,000 more words written than I did before June 1st.

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