Novel Draft 3 Almost – Week 12

August 20, 2014 § 3 Comments


Whee! Coming along. Getting there . . .

. . . you’ll notice the green tags 41 to 68. Those are chapters I haven’t written yet. I’m not absolutely sure all are necessary. All but chapter 41 are near the end of the book, pretty much right in a row (73 chapters total). Thinking they’ll be short, maybe combined somehow into four or five. Don’t know. But at this point psychologically?–I need to move on. So I’m going to punch holes in this draft, stick it in a notebook for easier reading, tweaking and tagging, and by next week I’ll be calling it working DRAFT #4.

Also exciting is the word count: 52,846 so far.  That’s a NA-NO!

This novel in the photo didn’t begin as a NaNoWriMo (writing 50,000 words in 30 days the month of November), as I may have mentioned, but I’ve been a NaNoWriMo “winner” four years in a row with other novel beginnings, so I can say with complete confidence it’s a good way to start writing one.

TIP: Get it all out of your head and down on paper any way you can.

That’s what I’m doing with the green-tagged chapters now. I have crazy wild sentences typed out that go with each chapter title to get me started again. So when I return to reading through the draft I’m not hit with a neon blank page. Who knows? More sentences might fall off the top of my head when I get there.

Draft #3 of YA novel - about 260 pages

Draft #3 of YA novel – 260 pages double spaced

XO – Pierr




Novel Detailing – Week 11

August 13, 2014 § 2 Comments

TIP: Take time to see important stuff.

unsnapping Raggedy Andy's shirt to find his heart

unsnapping Raggedy Andy’s shirt to find his heart – I LOVE YOU


Novel Draft 3 – Week 9

July 30, 2014 § Leave a comment

200 pages of 3rd draft, another 60 or so to go

200 pages of 3rd draft, another 60 or so to go

Naa…it’s not the whole draft yet. I’m trying a little visual psychology to excite the brain to cross the finish line. But even with this third draft ‘finished’ the novel isn’t done yet. See the blue and green tags? Once I have the last section of this third draft completed, I will read through it and tag it as I’ve tagged these two sections alerting me to spots where a certain plot element would fit nicely. Then my task – to call it a fourth draft – is to actually write in those spots a little something of that plot element.

You see how I’m working in the future here…not having actually completed the two tasks I’ve just described. The power of a blog is to keep a person accountable I guess. That’s what I’m up to, anyway. Oo – but look at these pages from the side . . .


Impressive, eh? Now that looks like a book!

“What we intend has a very high probability of actually occurring.” – Martha Beck

TIP: Fill your eyes with the final vision – heart & mind are sure to follow.

xo Pierr

Novel Days – Week 8

July 22, 2014 § 6 Comments

Personality-type wise, I’m someone who likes to make lists. Have a plan to ford.

my novel takes place over 12 days - in 75 chapters

my novel takes place over 12 days (left column) – in 75 chapters…short ones

There are all kinds of ways to plan things out on the computer these days – charts and graphs and Scrivener has a fabulous ‘Binder’ feature and virtual cork board where you can post index cards. I’ve been typing this third draft up in Scrivener, its chapters all organized and tidy, but there comes a point where I need to touch a real piece of paper, chart a course with a real pen and pencil. Use real Post-Its and highlighter pens on a big paper map.

From the start, I knew the novel would take place over 12 specific days in one particular month. My rough draft wasn’t written with the kind of detail you see in the photo above at all. My only plan was to write 300 pages, getting it down any way I could. It was all over the place. And that was a good thing. First and second draft I honed things in a bit, deciding what I liked and what might keep the plot rolling along. In fact, at that point I was thinking I could skip the writing of five days in the last week because once I had the narrator’s routine down for the reader, I figured no use repeating herself, right? Well, that may end up being true, but now – in this third draft – I’m feeling the need to know every detail of these 12 days so if/when I cut stuff in a fourth draft, I will know and understand what I’m leaving out rather than feel as if I’m lying to the reader somehow. Withholding.

In other words, at this point in the process I’m seeing how important it is to know the back story and the consequences of choices the narrator makes even if the writing of them never appears in the final draft. Maybe that’s why it takes so long to birth one of these (at least for me).

TIP: You gotta know.

sorry - blurry on purpose - Here's the last week of the novel, yellow highlighter to mark the chapters written

sorry – blurry on purpose – Here’s the last 8 days of the novel – yellow highlighter marking chapters written…as of July 22 I have 20 more to write – short ones :o)

xo – Pierr


Travels With Novel – Week 7

July 17, 2014 § 4 Comments

My desert writing getaway was glorious.

early morning - up with doves and quail

early morning – up with doves, quail, songbirds

Filled the feeders daily…

old old Saguaro

old old Saguaro

with Gila Woodpecker on top

with Gila Woodpecker on top

Sat out under the terra cotta umbrella reading and revising novel chapters till temp hit 90 (usually by 9 am)


At which time I moved indoors, up a story, with another amazing view…

looking NW to the Rincon Mountains

looking NW to the Rincon Mountains

My goal this trip was to read through the entire novel again from page 1, making changes on the pages. I brought pens and pencils and Post-It tags. The blue and green tags = tweaks & cuts. The yellow & purple tags = tracking 2 main plot elements. Orange & hot pink tags = major changes needed…meaning, gonna-have-to-slow-way-down-to-figure-these-out.

blue & green tags = tweaks & cuts; yellow & purple = tracking 2 plot points; orange & hot pink = needs major work

blue & green tags = tweaks & cuts; yellow & purple = tracking 2 plot points; orange & hot pink = needs major work

Later in the day the brain shut down and nothing but a dip in the pool and siesta would revive it. (I never actually wrote by the pool on a towel – this chapter was styled like this to impress you.)

1 revised chapter - whole sections rewritten on graph paper

1 revised chapter – whole sections rewritten on graph paper

Now I’m back home in the NW where temps have been pretty impressive. I’ve attempted to recreate the desert on my deck. It’s not the same, of course, but I’m still in a daily rhythm with the novel, now typing into the computer all the changes I made while away from electronics, creating what will be draft #3 once I print it out. I have at least two more to go, won’t be surprised at a 6th & 7th.

TIP: Write something you like to read…over and over and over and over and…

home again in the NW

home again in the NW on my deck

xo Pierr



Novel Revision – Week 6

July 9, 2014 § Leave a comment

Still perched in the desert . . .

White-winged Dove

White-winged Dove

Hummingbird & Gila Woodpecker

Hummingbird & Gila Woodpecker

Curve-billed Thrasher & White-winged Dove...on her way home...

Curve-billed Thrasher & White-winged Dove…on her way home…

Tip: When airborn, write on cocktail napkins for surprising results.      xo Pierr



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