First, flashbacks are finicky things and should not be abused. The first arc's first four chapters had them, in part to show how the characters came together. It didn't work out the way I wanted. If I edit out the flashbacks, that takes out two chapters' worth of work. Should I have done that? If I hadn't, I wouldn't have known how it worked out. So, the experiment was a failure, but I did learn from it, beyond, "don't do that!" Flashbacks need support, which was lacking, and need to keep the flow going instead of interrupting matters. I can pull out the flashbacks with some effort, and figure out how to show the group getting together.
Second, I have a good pace and pushing beyond it can leave me empty for a day or two afterwards. The weekend of November 11-13 saw me writing 8772 words over the three days. The Monday following, I only wrote 609 words*, a huge drop off. Everything I wanted to add in went into the story over the weekend and I had nothing ready to continue with. The result, some floundering as I tried to work out what was to come. That Monday, though, I didn't fall behind, thanks to the sheer amount written over the previous three days. Two thousand words per day is a good pace for me, with some brief pushes beyond possible without running out of energy or story. Three thousand words is beyond a sustainable rate, and NaNo is a marathon, not a sprint.
Third, distractions come in all shapes and sizes. I can't work in complete silence, but I also can't work with a new DVD playing. I tend to fall back on familiar, comfortable series that I don't need to pay full attention to anymore. But television isn't the only distraction...
|"I will not be denied." Photo by author.|
With NaNo 2016 over, it's time to start working out ideas for NaNo 2016. I have a few, but none at the point where there's a direction, just characters in search of a plot. Eventually, the plot arrives, but not just yet.
* I maintain a spreadsheet to track total and daily word count, then working out daily average and how many days ahead or behind I am. It helps with motivation.