Nightmare Week 1


15058 / 100000 words. 15% done!

And once someone engaged her, her dark blue eyes opened wide and her dramatic features became unusually expressive … perhaps not so unusual for someone who was a silent film star of her own life.
(Image is Fuseli’s The Nightmare.)

Not quite a long enough break, didn’t get to do everything that I felt I needed to, but I felt like if I waited any longer to start my nightmare novel, I either wouldn’t finish before November or I wouldn’t get enough of a break then either.

So I’ve gone ahead and started. I’m still not sure whether I’ve nabbed the beginning quite like it should be, but I think I’ll get a better sense of the new arc of the story once I get into the meat of it. At 15k, it’s still early. Although in comparison to the fairy tale remix novel, this story has gone from 0 to 60 in a heartbeat. I can already tell it’s wanting to be a shorter novel — for which I breathe a sigh of appreciative relief. The original is an almost even 60k. I anticipate that the rewrite will be closer to 75k since it’ll be a little more complicated, but I made the arbitrary goal number 100k anyway. Let’s just round up.

I really wanted to write 20k during the week off, but I had some things come up that got in the way. However, 15k is still a good head start. I plan to have a weekly quota of 10k for work weeks like I did before, but I’m going to try to make 15k on non-work weeks or non-school weeks. Since it’s a rewrite, that might be within my reach, and it’ll help me get through the novel more quickly, too.

Doing a rewrite is a bit different than coming up with something completely new. I’m borrowing sections almost wholesale, tweaking them, including character changes, name changes, etc. I just finished a section that basically followed the original for about 1-2k words, hence my hope that I’ll reach 15k on a less laden week.

The reason for the rewrite is simple: The original idea was really cool and I still love it, but the characters needed fixing, motivations needed to change, and it needed a better ending. The original was decent, but it could be better. So I’m keeping the concept, the basic structure, and I’m overhauling everything else to see what I can keep and what needs to be scrapped. Already I’m starting to see some major changes. For the better? I’m not sure yet. I’m coming across my first real deviation from the action of the original, and I’m still not entirely sure what’s going to happen. I don’t like going in blind, but maybe that’ll be the fun of it.

One thing I’m noticing while I’m writing (and another thing I’m not sure about): The writing is simpler than the fairy tale remix. And not because it’s written as a YA novel instead of an adult novel, because usually the biggest distinction between the two is the age of the protagonist, not the quality of the writing. It’s a bit strange to encounter a different style for a different story, and I don’t know whether it’s because I’m not warmed up and it will change as I figure out where I’m going. Or whether it’s because I started too soon after my last writing endeavor. I’m not even sure whether it’s a bad thing. Maybe it’s just as simple as the fact that I set my font bigger for this story, so it feels different to me (I’m weird with my fonts). I’ll keep going … and make the font smaller. Maybe that’ll help.

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