Going mean and dark in a scene that was tough to write

Folks who have read my fiction know that when it’s called for, I have hurt my main characters pretty badly.

Cadence Drake in one of the very early scenes in Hunting the Corrigan’s Blood comes to mind as a stellar example.

I’ve been pretty tough with THIS main character, too — but the series of scenes I just wrapped up today went way down into the dark. I’m always careful not to show specifics. I just allude.

But even suggesting what isn’t shown can be pretty scary.

However, my character has already come out the other side of it knowing not just what she can do… but what her enemies can’t. There is power in this, if she can figure out how to make it work for her. She isn’t there yet. 

But this isn’t book five, either.

I love what I got. But I’m so, so, so very happy that I’m through that rough spot, and that I got to finish with something fun and funny… and will get to write more of that tomorrow.

It was a very good day. 1346 words of 1250 planned, and 48,551 total.

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Discovering what you’re capable of under extreme duress will do that to you… and she had the EXTREME duress of being mostly dead for about half an hour.

During which she did some things she can’t explain…

And the ICU discovered some things about her that modern medicine, the doc, and the nurses can’t explain.

FUN, FUN day today.

Also…

It’s amazing how much you can have done by ten AM if you have ass in chair at seven.

I got 1345 words of my planned 1250 (and have also been keeping up with the slightly larger 1300+ Scrivener has been suggesting to help me hit my October 29th deadline).

The deadline isn’t hard and fast — it’s just in there to keep me focused. But even after I fell behind while having to do a big re-think, re-outline, and some re-writing, I’m pleased to find myself still heading toward hitting the finish date for Book 4.

After which, Book 5. 

And the Hell Revision. 450,000-ish words of One-Pass Revision.

But the process is working, and day to day, it’s fun.

Day to day, the One-Pass Revision will be fun, too. It’s only looking at the whole massive project in its entirety that it becomes daunting, and starts to feel overwhelming, and barely possible.

So… day to day, I just DON’T DO THAT.

Onward. Other work awaits.

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While my main character is female, my secondary lead is male — and today, for the first time, a big chunk of truth he happened to know about her past came out, along with some grim bits and pieces from his past.

The words flew, and I discovered things I simply had not known until I wrote them and realized they fit, and while I was writing, I managed to answer a handful of critical questions I’d raised for myself through the previous three books.

It was a good day for discovery. And for a very nice word count.

1543 words for the day, and 45,973 total. I have PASSED THE HALFWAY POINT!

Okay… the book will probably run longer than 90,000 words — the other three have.

But I have passed the OFFICIAL halfway point!

And I love this story, this series, and this world.


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The words leapt to the page today, my fingers flew, I giggled evilly — and my delightful little town and its bizarre and unpredictable denizens took me deeper into a mess my MC hasn’t even fully wrapped her head around yet.

Something big is coming.

Something bad is watching.

And I’m flying toward it through lovely little neighborhoods of fifties Mid-Century Modern homes and sixties bungalows, moving down sidewalks that hold back carefully manicured lawns and 19th Century mansions shaded by centuries-old oaks…

Down to the places in the town that have been around not just for a couple centuries… but for eons.

God, I love this world.

1435 words, and 44,430 total. Really fine day all the way around.

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A 30-word scene sentence and a thirty-sentence outline leaves you an awful lot of room for figuring out what actually needs to fill each 3000-word chapter.

Today’s tiny sentence  turned into a scene of action, a bit of stuff I pulled out of having been a registered nurse working in both ICU and ER…

Some critters I introduced in the previous book…

An attempted repeat of something that happened to start this novel…

And it roped in my main character, a dear friend of hers, an entire school full of kids and teachers, the local cops, the entire local hospital ER staff, and a WHOLE lot of upset parents… and made sure everyone had just a gawdawful morning…

That nevertheless turned out a whole lot better than it could have. 

One Pied Piper who showed up out of nowhere could have wreaked a lot of destruction and tragedy… if a few tiny heroes with a really gross way of stopping him had not come to the rescue.

I loved today’s words. Had no idea any of this was going to happen — but it fit the Sentence, it solved the problem… and it gave me the bigger problem that I’ll get to deal with next Monday.

1445 words out of 1250 planned. Really, really, really wonderful, fun, awesome writing day — the kind of day that makes this the job I bounce out of bed in the morning to do — because SOMETIMES I get to do this.


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I do not envy my main characters. I’ve mentioned this in the past, I will no doubt mention it again in the future… but I particularly do not envy my Ohio main character.

She has World’s Worst Job, which she inherited from her grandmother, and she wasn’t quite as quiet or subdued about doing it as her grandmother had been. Grandma managed to keep things quiet — but the rules changed by the time my MC showed up.

And… boy… the bag guys really picked up their game yesterday and today, and now… well, I’m remembering the “shoot it where it won’t grow back” line from Men in Black, and thinking that guy had it easy.

Got the words, the outline is holding up, the scenes are holding together as I write them, and I’m staying on deadline.

I do love this world, and this story, and these people.


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First, though, the words — 1393 out of my 1250 words-per-day objective. 40,171 total. At 45,000, I’ll pass the halfway mark on Book Four.

But… oh, boy. I hated having to stop for the day. There’s such incredibly bad stuff happening, and this guy my main character loves so much is in horrible trouble.

I got a late start this morning (started at almost eight AM), but it didn’t matter, because today everything I set up yesterday just rolled into place. It clicked.

And tomorrow should be fun, because all the moving pieces are going to collide — heroes will meet hell, and monsters  will meet mayhem, and while I don’t know HOW it’s going to work out, that’s the fun of this job. I’ll set things in motion, follow them through to the end, and get to find out. 

So I’m very much looking forward to my Thursday words.

Now, however, on to the rest of the day’s work list.


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My daily words are funded by my Ko-Fi supporters.

All supporters are thanked by name (withheld by request) in
each book’s acknowledgements.
To add your support, use the orange Support me button on this page.
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Today was about big, bad things coming at my MC… and about her knowing they were coming, and getting ready to walk out to face them unarmed to save a dear friend…

And about how being someone who shows up when others need help can sometimes pay off when YOU need help…

And it went well.

To say the least.

I was up at at the desk just after seven AM, and now, just after ten AM, I discovered that I wrote 2555 words (way more than my 1250-word/day objective), and I now have 38,865 total written on Book 4, and I love the way this novel is coming together.

 


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I got 1363 words (putting me at 37,578), and I love them all, but my poor main character is watching the world fall apart around here while someone she loves is in the middle of horror and hell.

More tomorrow.


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Today’s scene and situation were both really good ways to end my writing week.

I have a cliffhanger scene, a cliffhanger situation, absolutely no clue what’s going to happen when I come back in on Monday — 

And that’s a good thing. This stuff gets to percolate all weekend while I take down-time, play No Man’s Sky, read fiction, and specifically don’t think about the story. 

The gigantic scene I wrote previously that had to go all the way to the back third of Book 4 is a consequence of what I’m writing now.

I know only one connecting point between the two scenes — but it’s big, and it’s a really mean twist that I’ve known was coming since Book One.

It will be resolved in this novel. The trouble its resolution spawns, however, is going to carry me all the way to the end of Book Five.

So — this is a really good place to leave myself as I go kick back for a couple days and let myself relax.

I’m looking forward to the weekend, and to letting this stuff all bake slowly in the background.

1268 words of 1250 planned — still a little behind on what Scrivener says I need to hit my deadline of October 29th — but in first draft (when writing indie) all deadlines are flexible. Not VERY flexible, of course. I have long-term objectives I want to hit.

But I can play with a few days either way.



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