We’re over the first weekend of NaNoWriMo, and I’m well along into writing now. I just finished Chapter Thirty – which would be more impressive if I hadn’t started the month at Chapter Twenty-seven 🙂 But so far it’s going well writing the second half of The Princess Beyond the Thorns.
I finished out above 2,000 words each day for the first three days of NaNo, though today I “only” wrote 1,893 words. That puts me just past 9,000 words, about 2,400 above the goal amount for today. So I’m pretty satisfied with word count so far! I always like to get a cushion at the beginning, because life is bound to happen eventually and result in a lower day.
In terms of story, I finished Gregory’s funeral, got Rose and Terrence out on the road, and have laid some political plot threads. This is a little bit of a lull point in the story, and I expect the action to pick up more in another couple chapters. We’ll see if that’s easier or harder to write…
So far Rose has been easier to write than Terrence’s POV, and yesterday and today (mostly a Terrence chapter) was slower going than the first two days of the month. On the other hand, during October “revisions” I added in several new Terrence chapters to the first half, including two written in a white heat in one afternoon, so I may not be fair blaming Terrence for slower writing!
So far I’m enjoying the speed of NaNo, and though there’s a word count pressure, there’s less quality pressure. I’ve been doing revisions for months, so even though those revisions have involved a lot of new writing (like the 25,000 words added to Guardian III) the story was so much farther along that the quality pressure was far higher, since I knew the book was close to final. This is a first draft (at least of this half!) so things don’t need to be so set in stone.
I think that’s the story so far. Have an excerpt! This bit let me delve into the story’s pantheon a bit. I’ve really got to name more of these gods though…
Terrence was about to say the shrine had been there before, when he turned his head and saw what Henry was getting at. The shrine, a small shelf half-way up the wall, still held the statue he remembered of the Traveler God, depicted here as a cloaked man with a hawk on his shoulder. He remembered liking this depiction, the hood of the cloak pushed back and a broad smile splitting the god’s face. The Traveler God shared the space with a statue of the God of the Hearth, a woman with a loaf of bread in one arm and her other hand resting on the head of a seated dog. A few flowers sat near the feet of the gods, and a few remembrance ribbons with embroidered names lay beneath them. The lack of one for Master Latham had made Terrence suspect the man was gone, not dead, and therefore delicate to ask after.
All of this was much as he remembered, but the new item was surely what Henry meant. Right at the center of the shrine was propped a sketch of a young man, a simple but not bad drawing. A small statue of a lion, mouth open in a roar, stood beside the picture, and a heap of rosemary lay next to it. The symbolism was clear enough: a lion for a soldier, and rosemary for remembrance.
“Probably the war,” Terrence said.
“Probably,” Henry said, voice quiet.