Word Counts

So for the longest time I have worried myself with word counts. In the past, I’ve always tried to keep a quota of at least 3000 words per chapter, but this is becoming a burden. I found myself starting to structure my stories around trying to hit that quota rather than writing the story that I wanted to write. Occasionally some good has come out of it by forcing me to think of some interesting plot points to expand on, but more often than not, it becomes a headache as I try my best just to make up fluff in order to fill out this limit.

A good story doesn’t require a specific amount of words, either maximum, or minimum. What it needs is what is appropriate and what the writer feels comfortable with. If they look at the story and it is a thousand words long, but they’re satisfied with their creation, then they’ve written the appropriate amount of words. The same goes for an expanding tale that covers the life of a character and spans hundreds of thousands of words. If the author believes that they have done a good job, and not only enjoy writing it, but reading it as well, then I believe that they’ve hit that appropriate amount of words.

Writing for me has always been a passion, not a hobby, not a job, but something that I have loved doing ever since I was young. It has evolved over the years, but in these recent months, I’ve found the insight that I have cast on my own writing to have helped me to enjoy it more than ever. I’m slowly losing the chains that I had which tied me to what I believed others’ expectations were and just doing what I want, because I want to, otherwise there’s not really much point in it.

As soon as that passion we have becomes tedious, a chore, that is when we need to take stock of what we’re doing, and find out if we’ve outgrown it, or are doing something wrong, and I know I have not outgrown writing. When I think of what I love to do, it is always the first in my mind. Everything about it is what I have centred my life around.

So I’ve decided to forgo this word limit, and this chain. Instead, I have actually found that I have been writing more in a chapter now that I’m no longer constantly looking down at the word count, or up at the clock to see how close I am to my ‘average words per hour’.

I’m very excited to start focusing on the story and making that work. Bit by bit I will improve my writing, and so long as I improve even just by the smallest of margins, then I have still improved myself as a writer. But those are just my thoughts.

At my current point in progress, I’m finishing off the last chapter of the second part of Tales of Estrangia, at which point I’ll move back over to Dark City Chronicles to keep my mind from going stale, and I cannot wait to use some of the skills that I have gained in order to work on that story as well and continue creating better works.

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After the Break

So I almost didn’t get to post anything today. After over a week with no internet, I came back from our time away from home to not be able to establish a connection to the wordpress servers in order to be able to publish the chapter I was trying to upload. Luckily it somehow fixed itself as evidenced.

So apart from that, I had a pretty good time while away. It was nice to just hang out with my family and not worry about anything. I went crabbing with my father at one point which was pretty fun, you know, aside from the small critters running through the sand clouds and snipping at you on the way past. Still though, I enjoyed myself and it we managed to get a lot more than we have in the past.

On the writing front I managed to get quite a bit done. I think I finished around six off the top of my head during my time away. Pretty successful if I do say so myself. Only problem was that I was a little inhibited by the inability to use the internet. See I usually struggle with creating names for characters, places etc. So one technique that I use is taking a language that I imagine the character stemming from, taking a word which I associate with them and then twist it so that it sounds believable as a name. That was how I came up with names for a couple of the three Fire Pillar members, Igrein and Niselt stemmed from Igneous if I remember.

So, deprived of google translate, I wasn’t too eager to write a chapter in the perspective of someone who I didn’t have a name for yet, but now that I’m back I hope to be able to get that back on track soon enough.

Back And Forth

So in just finishing the first arc of my most recent story, I’ve decided to continue my rotation onto the last project that I will be switching between. This one is a writing exercise that I have been thinking of doing for a while where I utilise the word of the day page from dictionary.com. I will be starting from the beginning and going through. So that means that the first one will be emolument.

One thing I want to note beforehand is that I have attempted this before, so for the first few of the stories I might already have part of it written out, though that being said, most of it was just world building rather than an actual story. That being said, I have had a fair idea in mind of what I have wanted for the first word for quite some time, though most of the time spent between now and when I finish it to rework it slightly to be a bit more cohesive than the random thoughts of it that are tumbling around inside my head.

And that brings me to my next point of explanation, why I’m switching between projects. I think I may have already discussed this in a previous post, but I have a feeling that it might be a common occurrence until I remember that I’ve spoken about it. I have this weird sense of motivation where I am always looking for something new to create. This is good and bad in that my mind is always filled with all of these wonderful creations that I want to put to paper, however it also makes sticking with a project extremely tiring.

I haven’t tried switching projects at this rate before, so I’m hoping that the time apart from the different projects will be enough to keep my interest in them and refresh my thought process in how to proceed with them at a decent rate.

I still find it odd myself, though, that I get so excited to write parts of the story that are so much further on, and yet I just get so burned out on the parts that I’m writing at the moment. I think part of it may be that I’m not too experience in writing structured, yet more detailed arcs rather than just tapping away at my keyboard until I’ve found myself satisfied. The problem with the latter is that often times I’ll  find chapters that are near double the length of others, and they take so much longer, which doesn’t help when I’m already bad enough at trying to keep to a schedule.

I think that’s all I really wanted to say in that regard, though.I hope I didn’t drag it on too long and make things boring. I might talk a little more about DnD next time since there are a few things that have come up there which are a little interesting.

Deciding my writing style

So, I came to this conclusion a couple of days ago, but I figured that I don’t really care about getting the most scientifically factual story out anymore. The thought came about when I as deciding how to write the physics of a certain action in the latest chapter of Dark City, and I realised that the way I wanted to do it, and the way that I visualised it in my head, was impossible realistically. Going down the process even more, I also found that the amount of time that I was spending researching was way longer than it was worth.

So the way that I write includes a lot of visual thought in my head, and by that I mean that generally I will see certain parts of the story in my head and then I will try to communicate it as best as I can in words. Thinking of it like this, I also gain a great deal from music, often being able to listen to a song and then vividly picture essentially a music video, with the fight scenes moving in time with the music etc.

In that sense when I picture them, it’s not really in a ‘real’ sense. And in that I mean that I usually think of something in an animated sense. It helps a lot because there are some things that I just can’t picture in a real sense because I have never seen it, and when I think of it in the other way, I can try to see it in a way that would make sense to me.

Finally, the reason why I came to realise this is because of just how long it took to decide how the shotgun would work. I’ve always heard that bullets don’t actually send people flying, however for some reason I just couldn’t get it out of my head that a shotgun would have a different effect on them because they wouldn’t have the same amount of penetration, a wider area of force and so on. I spent around an hour and a half looking for information while also trying to navigate around any lists that I would land on, and in the end I came to no solid conclusion, and instead just improvised to what I figured would do it anyway.

All up, I’ve figured that, fuck it, I’m going to write how I want, because at the heart of it all, the person most key to keeping interested in the story is me, and the way I’m going to be entertained is by reading and writing something that I can associate my own logic with, and in the end anyway, it doesn’t matter how I write it because any world that I write in could literally be any world I want, the humans in that world could have a different biology or the literal laws of physics might be the complete opposite of ours. Nobody needs to know except me, and if they don’t enjoy, I’m not forcing them to read it, and those that do, well then they get an extra little treat whenever I can give them more enjoyment.

So… I suppose I’m going to be trying this out

When I originally thought about doing something like a blog, or having an online presence, I’d dismissed it, thinking that I would never need to do that, or there was no point. To be honest, I’m still a little dubious about it, but then I heard about Worm, and then I started reading about Worm. I found that I actually enjoyed the writing style of it and was interested in attempting to try my own hand at it.

The culmination of all of that is my new piece of writing that I am starting, the Tales of Estrangia. It was an idea that I’d had for a long time, but could never really put it into an actual novel, until I started writing it in a web novel format.

I hope to be able to complete it using such a style, however at the same time, I know that I won’t be able to maintain my attention on it for a long time, so this is the chapter output that I believe will work best for me. As I finish the chapters on Tales of Estrangia, I’ll put them out onto that separate site’s space, and after I finish an arc of it (since I am writing in a similar style to Wordbow’s) I will start another story on the side and release that one as I finish those chapters. Alternating between the two, I hope that my brain can have enough rest from each to keep coming up with new and interesting ideas without being weighed down by the struggle of forcing myself to come up with sub-par work.

Occasionally I might have an inspiration to put a piece of writing on here, most likely a short story or something of that same nature, however I don’t think I shall do it often, simply because I do want to focus on the other two stories. Honestly I have absolutely no clue how they’ll turn out quality wise, but I figure as long as I’m having fun, and those that are reading it are enjoying themselves, its a win in my book.