Some days it is hard to get the words to form on the screen. It happens to even the greatest writer remember Rome was not built in a day. Neither were any of Stephen King’s Novels. Many great books go unpublished. I wonder how many fantastic novels are stuck on a hard drive or in a notebook simply because the author wrote for themselves or did not want to be in the limelight if it was the next great novel. I write for myself knowing that I probably will not publish a book. Most of my writing is for my blog. The adage of write a thousand words a day some days is almost impossible for me. Even though I have the time, some days the words escape me. There are days where words flow like a monsoon and days where you pray for rain like a rancher in the middle of a drought. Many times, I feel like I must write in a straight line following the narrative I laid out in my head. That I must get to that thousand-word goal, without exploring the world I am typing up. The characters or simple realistic conversations they have get overlooked. The conversations that you have every day, so your characters would have similar ones while you write.
In example I will write a ten-minute conversation about what someone thought about a movie they just watched. Yes, it was quite boring to write but it was a lot of words and to me made sense because it made the two people talking feel relatable. It is something I find to use as a writing exercise. Especially, for a day where you can not think of what to write. Write a conversation, something mundane that you had thought about that day. Let the two characters talking be a guide the conversation. Sometimes the conversation takes an unexpected turn. In the ten-minute conversation about the movie it ended up comparing the chimney sweep in the original Mary Poppins to the Lamp lighter in the Mary Poppins Returns. If you have not seen the movie watch it. I personally loved the movie, even though Dick Van Dyke was not the male lead.
The other issue I mentioned is following a strict narrative. I often find myself sticking to the narrative that is so strict that you cannot let the characters, or you explore the area around them. Some days it seems like I have all day to explore the characters surrounding and other days I have ten or twenty minutes to bust out a blog post or several posts for online auction descriptions. I count these as part of my thousand words a day goal. My minimum word counts daily is one hundred words. One hundred words for a chapter or scene may not seem like a lot but it does add up. In four short week’s you will conquer a chapter, or a short fan fiction. Where I have not written fan fiction before I always have had an idea for a few.
So, exploring your characters is an odd thing to explain, while I am writing my characters change along with the story. Mostly it’s little things like adding in how they are feeling, mannerisms, and sometimes something a bit more. Have you ever written a perfectly detailed character bio only to realize halfway through the book the character is deathly afraid of mice or worms? No, I haven’t done that yet, but allergies and illnesses have impacted my characters mid story, or even a chapter gets changed with my characters illness. I bet you weren’t paying attention to the word count, as of this word there are 613 words in this post.
One thousand words may seem like a daunting task but in all reality, it is a very easy goal. Today I also wrote 100 words in one of the chapters I am currently working on, a blog post and a Facebook post. As always live your life like a series of side quests.