12 Nov 2017

NaNoWriMo 2017 Week 2 Update

Total Words: 26 780
Words Since Last Update: 15 170
Completed Chapters: 4, 5, 6

Mecha Academy progresses!  Many more words have been written since the end of Week 1.  Chapters are completed!  Conflicts are happening!  Let's see where things stand.

First as mentioned last week, Mecha Academy is an older project that I'm redoing from scratch.  I have some scenes in mind, but they're starting to look less and less likely to happen.  That's why I try not to do full rewrites - I go off on new tangents.  So, that leaves iterative edits.

Second, when I get into a groove when writing, I tend to forget details, mostly names.  I've spelled Lars' last name two different ways and a rifle model had a number changed from its introduction to its next mention in the next paragraph.  Oops.  Fortunately, all this is fixable during a break from writing.  Repairs are easier than creation.

Third, I was able to get ahead of pace far faster than I expected.  I've only had two days where I didn't reach even the minimum word count, 1667, to maintain a good NaNo pace.  I'm still a few days ahead of pace despite that.

That covered, the story is still coming along.  Conflicts are building up.  The conflict between Rhiannon and Dusty escalated to physical violence.  Miyami has taken Rhiannon's side, leaving Dusty sleeping on a couch for now.  Ric is trying to keep the squad together despite the history Dusty and Rhiannon share.  Lars, alas, hasn't gotten his own conflict yet.  Instead, he's getting the romance, so far one sided.  A few new characters have appeared, ones not mentioned in the original work, including a sergeant handling the training regimen for the cadets and Susanna, who has her sights on Lars.

The chapters are running longer than they did in Unruly.  I'm letting them go as long as needed for now, but I did have to cut Chapter 5 off.before it took over.  It was starting to look more like my earlier works, where I hadn't figured out chaptering.  I did have a good place to end it, letting me change the point of view and the tone in Chapter 6.

I'm building up to the first major event, an obstacle course that will determine who stays and who leaves.  One of the points I keep returning to is that the squad has to act together, even if they can't stand each other.  This needs to pay off.  I also need to get Miyami to be willing to tolerate Dusty.  One of the changes from the original idea has Miyami be far more a royalist than before.  Miyami knows the history between Dusty and Rhiannon and isn't afraid to show where her loyalties are.  I need her to start wondering about Dusty.  I did slip that in, but it's subtle.

Part of my goals during NaNoWriMo is to maintain my life and not become a hermit.  Some of that is done by getting out to write-ins, a social occasion where everyone writes.  It is surprisingly productive.  I also still get out to most of my gaming, though the missed session isn`t because of NaNo.  My life now, though, also includes this blog and Lost in Translation.  While the Friday fiction posts are usually written well in advance, the commentaries aren't.  Likewise, Lost in Translation is typically done a few days before the day it goes live.  In the past, I've dropped the commentary near the end of November because I couldn't think of what to say.  This year, I'm trying a new approach that I thought would be easier - taking a Mystery Science Theatre 3000 episode and writing on how the featured movie could be remade better.  Easier, right.  Danger!! Death Ray ran over 2000 words, over a day's worth of work in NaNo alone.  I may have to rethink this approach.

Coming up, the obstacle course to wrap up the first arc.  After that, I need to get the cast into their mecha and let slip Dusty's past to the rest of her class.  I need this to work out well and leave some questions with the audience so that the legal drama coming much, much later can call back to it.

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