Remember back at the beginning of May, when I was stuck on the 15K treadmill? I had to replace some of Eliza’s scenes, so I would put in a full day’s work of writing, then paste it into place and discover my wordcount had essentially not changed.
Second verse, same as the first, a little bit louder, a little bit worse.
Dead Rick also needed a lot of scene replacements. (This is apparently my New Method of novel-writing. I want my Old Method back.) I could’t really afford to stop dead on forward progress, so my plan lately has been to hit the book from both ends, writing substitute material for him, while also adding new material for Eliza. But for a while there every scene I swapped in turned out to be a few hundred words shorter than what had been there before, so despite doing a thousand or eleven hundred or twelve hundred words of forward progress, my total wordcount was only inching along. Yesterday I wrote three thousand words for a gain of about five hundred. It’s felt a lot like running up the down escalator: a hell of effort for slower-than-average progress.
Which is why it feels like such a victory that I finally have fifty thousand words of book. And I’m almost done with the replacements; just one more thing needs swapping out, and then there’s one new scene I’m going to write for Part One. Okay, I just lied through my teeth: I still have to go back and redo that pair of scenes for Eliza, that I’ve been meaning to do ever since I got back from London. But I’ve got those clear enough in my head that I’ve been able to write her side of Part Two just fine without having backtracked first, so there’s less pressure there. (As opposed to Dead Rick, whose plot had gone so badly astray that I’m only just now starting to see what he’ll be doing in Part Two.)
I’m just hoping I don’t have to keep doing this scene-replacement thing, because man, as writing processes go, this one kind of sucks. But as long as it turns out a good book in the end, I’ll live.
Word count: 50,640
LBR quota: Tonight’s Dead Rick work was mostly blood. Louisa got some love, though.
Authorial sadism: The Goodemeades are good at subtly applying guilt trips.