(To learn more about the Sunday Circle, check out author Peter M. Ball’s blog!)

It was an oddly mixed week. On the one hand, I cranked out the work I needed to get done most days, and managed to hit (and pass) the climax point in the novel, so HOORAY! The wrap-up end is in sight! I’m pretty confident I can get it done by Wednesday, which would feel pretty damn special. On the other hand, Bug was sick, then I was sick, and that knocked me off my game, so while I hit the climax on the book, I also feel like the writing was…less than it could have been. But! I’m still pretty pleased with the progress (and at having been–at least for one night–that tough as nails writer who writes with tissues stuffed up her nose to keep the snot from dripping onto her keyboard as she works. I feel like somehow that’s a horrible bucket list thing to check off on the “proof of being a serious writer” mental checklist.)

This week, I’m working on: Finishing the book. Wednesday seems a likely day to finish, since most of the chapters have been about 3k, and I’ve pretty regularly managed 1k/day throughout the project. After that, I’m taking the rest of the week off.

This week, I’m inspired by: Finished Riverdale last night, and really enjoyed it, though there were definitely a few things I wasn’t 100% on board with (Um, the whole Chuck problem, being pretty much the only young black guy being portrayed as an unrepentant sexual predator? Yeeeeeeah…not so good. And then what was with the Arch/you-know-who storyline that seemed to be driving the entire first half of the narrative and then never came up again? We spent so much time on that, and built it up so much, yet it played no role–just a dead end. Which, admittedly, in real life there are plenty of dead end leads in crime investigations, but I found in fiction–given the emphasis placed on it so early in the story–as a viewer I expected it to all tie back in, and felt a bit cheated that it didn’t.) But I am still obsessed with the way they reenvisioned the characters, and am CRAZY about how they handled Jughead (ZOMG), and even quite impressed by how they handled Archie, given that even as a tween, I thought he was a bit skeezy to be equally chasing two girls without being willing to commit to either. In this envisioning, I really liked him, flaws and all, and he seemed much more real than the character in the comics ever did. Loved Veronica’s character, and wish we’d gotten a tiny bit more of the Pussycats, but all in all, delighted by it, and really looking forward to the next season.

On a separate note: does anyone have any good recommendations for books/blog-posts/articles on the process of revising a novel? I’ve read The Weekend Novelist Rewrites the Novel which was solid, and I’ve got Charlotte Nash’s How to Edit a Novel strapped to my hip (and will be rereading), but I’m hitting that point where I am staring at this near-completed thing I’ve called forth from the depths, and the epic amount of rewriting that it’s going to need is scaring the crap out of me. Any recommendations for additional reading would be much appreciated!

chris-traeger-dead

It is literally FUBAR.

What I’m avoiding: I was avoiding cleaning after a week of ughness, and the upkeep of the living spaces left primarily in the hands of a three year old, the toys kind of took over. But I managed to tackle that tonight, so that’s less crazymaking. Still lots of other tidying to do to cut down on the massive amounts of clutter that have crept back into the kitchen and elsewhere, and that’s probably going to be my avoidance issue for the week.

In Which Our Heroine Witnesses the Death of the Mistress

Project Title: The Mistress of Frosthaven
Genre: YA – Dark Fantasy
Words Today: 1,636
Running Total: 88,419
Scrap Draft: (V1.0 = 31,142), V2.0 = 13,081

UGH, WHY AM I SICK IN LITERALLY THE LAST WEEK OF WRITING THIS STUPID BOOK?! I just wanted to end on a strong note, and now every word I wrench out feels as crappy as I do, but I need, need, need this thing done by the end of the month.

How is it I had more energy yesterday and the day before, but TODAY, I feel like absolute garbage? Had to cancel Write Club, because I feel unfortunately similar to Jabba the Hut, and my keyboard at this point should probably be marked as a biohazard.

Ugh. Sick. Whyyyyyyyyyy…

In Which Our Heroine Fights Someone Unexpectedly Alive

Project Title: The Mistress of Frosthaven
Genre: YA – Dark Fantasy
Words Today: 1,030
Running Total: 86,783
Scrap Draft: (V1.0 = 31,142), V2.0 = 13,081

UGH… I feel like crap. Better than yesterday (the sore throat is mostly gone, thank goodness), but I just want it on the record that I put in 1k today with wads of tissue paper shoved up my nose because it’s running like crazy, and my nose is too stuffed up in general to snuffle it back up. YAY. But I still got it done.

Now I’m going to go lie down.

Ugh. No new words tonight. Caught the cold Bug’s got, and although it’s not the worst in terms of fuzzy-brainedness, it’s brought with it a killer sore throat and that’s just making it hard to focus on anything besides NOT SWALLOWING.

But I’m going to commandeer Saturday night for a little extra work to catch up on word count, and hopefully that’ll get me on track if I’m behind. Also, I’ve got a Write Club set up for Friday, and that should be super helpful, too! So I’m optimistic that taking tonight to recuperate isn’t completely foolhardy. *dammit I said don’t swallow!*

Ouch.

In Which Our Heroine Joins Forces with an Uncertain Ally and Descends into Darkness 

Project Title: The Mistress of Frosthaven
Genre: YA – Dark Fantasy
Words Today: 1,058
Running Total: 85,753
Scrap Draft: (V1.0 = 31,142), V2.0 = 13,081

Well, I can tell we’re officially on that final push to the climax and end. It’s teeth-grinding work, trying to just put one foot after another, knowing it’ll all likely have to be rewritten from near scratch, trying not to think about how it’ll need to be rewritten from scratch, all while trying to just GET PEOPLE WHERE THEY NEED TO BE and GET THINGS MOVING AS THEY NEED TO MOVE. But that often seems to be the way it is for me. A little extra distracted tonight because Bug has a cold and isn’t sleeping well, poor guy. :(

In Which Our Heroine Learns How High the Stakes Truly Are

Project Title: The Mistress of Frosthaven
Genre: YA – Dark Fantasy
Words Today: 1,195
Running Total: 84,695
Scrap Draft: (V1.0 = 31,142), V2.0 = 13,081

Making progress, and finally took a minute to sit down and fine-tune the outline for the last handful of scenes so that they actually work together and don’t just make magical fanciful hops from one event to another without any logic between them. Still plenty of work to do, but I’m feeling pretty confident that I can get to the climax by the end of this week, and spend next week in the wrap-up to The End. It’ll be a bit tight, but I’ll put in whatever extra time I need to get it done. I’m so, so, SO ready for this draft to be done. Can’t even think about edits it’s going to need yet, because WHOOO BOY. So. Much. Editing. But I’m not there yet! So I’m not thinking about it.

In Which Our Heroine Steps into Darkness

Project Title: The Mistress of Frosthaven
Genre: YA – Dark Fantasy
Words Today: 1,406
Running Total: 83, 500
Scrap Draft: (V1.0 = 31,142), V2.0 = 13,081

Let me tell you: I really, really didn’t want to write tonight. And I even had a good reason. See, there was this dinner thing for the hubby’s work, and we took the kiddo, and it was good but exhausting, and we got home around nine, and the kiddo was way past bedtime, and I was like, you know what? I don’t need to write tonight. I forgot this thing was happening, and really, I can make up the word count later next week. It’ll be fine.

And then, I sat my butt down and wrote anyway. In the back of my mind, I thought: I don’t have to write tonight, but if I do anyway, then I’m really, honestly, without question doing the work. Writers write. And writing tonight, when I very reasonably could skip out on it, proves that I’m committed.

So I did. And I am. This thing is getting done by the end of the month.