I largely spent the first half of February continuing to garden my Obsidian project, and the second half delving into outlining books 1 and 2 of the trilogy.
I’m readjusting my time estimates: ideally I finish the scene weave of all 3 books by the end of March or early April, and I can switch to drafting.
My Obsidian project now looks like:
Manuscript markdown files: 11
Manuscript words: 5875
Total markdown files: 314
Total words: 103785
I wrote a python script that discards symbol-only words (like
## from markdown headers or
- from markdown lists) from the wordcount. I may get ambitious enough to run this script on push via GitHub actions someday.
That’s not a ton of extra words since January, but I deleted a lot of cruft and answered a lot of open questions.
I did add nearly 100 markdown files: this included tracking new characters, brainstorms, questions, and splitting dense multi-section pages up into more focused sub-pages.
And I averaged over 10 commits per day in Febrary, per my GitHub. I’d like to keep that going.
I wasn’t entirely sure I was doing the right thing when I started outlining Book 2 before writing the first draft of Book 1. But it’s paying off: I have a better idea of what events, characters, clues, and questions I need to plant in Book 1 to pay off in Book 2. It’s also clear where and when I don’t know enough about the story, world, or characters. I’ll continue until I have a draft of a Book 3 outline, then see what I can do to tighten everything up.
As part of this, I added the first maps, using this YouTube playlist as a guide. I’ll amend these maps to fit the story as needed, but just having something to work from helps.
Keeping the writing habit going
It’s been a bit challenging keeping going every day. Archer has needed a lot of care and attention. We’ve been waking up multiple times in the middle of the night to give Archer his pain meds and walk or carry him to the back door to do his business. Whiskey has been patient but she needs attention too: we’ve been giving her extra-long walks. We’re both sleep deprived and a little loopy.
This means that my daydreams of waking early, feeling refreshed, getting my exercise on, walking about the city to keep my creative juices flowing, all while cranking out a ton of words, hasn’t manifested yet. I have had a day or three like that but nothing consistent.
Luckily I’m used to this: I’m used to powering through and hitting deadlines when I’m not feeling great or super productive. Finding ways to crank out work at various times of the day, from different places, sneaking bits of time here or there with varying levels of focus.
Even if my output for a given day isn’t as good as I want it to be, the act of keeping the project active in the back of my mind is a win.