World Building Like Crazy

I spent the last two days doing some major world building for my novel. There were a few details that I had neglected to figure out and I realized that having those details would make it much easier to piece my world together.

I figured out approximate populations for countries and major cities and created maps for two of the kingdoms where most of the story will be taking place instead of just having a world map.

I also changed a few place names around and created distinctive regions in each country.

I also did a little bit of writing in A Clash of Crimson and I was able to add about 1000 words to the story. If I can keep this momentum up I will be looking good for NaNoWriMo.

As a quick side note, I’m attending a diversity journalism conference in Oregon next week. Because of this commitment, I had to refuse an offer for two $50 tickets for row 17 to see Def Leppard in Tacoma on October 1. Ugh. I really want to go to that concert.

In the mood

I feel in the mood for writing.

I tried writing in Clash of Crimson again last week and I failed. I got some stuff accomplished, but then I went nine days without even looking at my novel. I knew that I needed some inspiration and something to get me going.

So, I decided to spend yesterday watching the entire extended edition Lord of the Rings trilogy on Blu Ray. There’s honestly nothing like those films to get me in the mood for writing high fantasy.

Now I’m hoping to get some writing done today and maybe a little bit of revising my outline so that my path ahead is clear.

Then maybe, just maybe, I’ll be ready to write part 2 for NaNoWriMo in November.

Writing, Writing Again

I was inspired to write a little bit more in my novel yesterday. A Clash of Crimson has been the absolute biggest headache and the hardest project of my life, and it doesn’t look like it will ever be finished. But, I’m pushing forward.

I gave up on my rewrite at about the 30,000 word mark in the middle of Camp NaNoWriMo – July 2016. Now I’m trying to play catch up so that I’m ready to begin writing part 2 for NaNoWriMo in November. I figure if I can at least get a little bit of writing in each week, then I’ll be in good shape.

September 11, 2016

Starting Word Count: 30,177

Ending Word Count: 30,836

Difference: +659

Camp NaNoWriMo: Day 6

Welcome to day 6 of Camp NaNoWriMo!

After writing yesterday’s blog post I sort of kicked it into high gear with my novel. I realized that I really want to finish rewriting this to the point that I start writing new chapters all the way until the end.

Of course, that means that some of my edits aren’t going to be perfect and some scenes will be left mostly how they are. But, that’s okay for now because the novel isn’t even done yet. I’ll worry about trying to be perfect AFTER I write “The End.”

I’ll just walk away knowing that my novel is better after this Camp NaNoWriMo than it was before I started rewriting. That’s all that matters: It’s better.

Yesterday I passed the 13,000 word mark in my rewrite and reached the end of Chapter Two. That’s a big achievement this early in the game, because I only have 11 chapters written, and many of them are much shorter than Chapter Two was.

How I finished rewriting the dreadful second chapter:

Yesterday I complained that Chapter Two was awful. Well, I’m feeling a little bit better about it now. I ended up keeping the plot of the chapter exactly the same.

I expanded a scene in the middle of the chapter where the main character, Arrellia, originally was just corner by merchants who wanted to mug her and was rescued by an old man named Tancard and her knight in shining armor, Bedric. Now, she actually does kind of get mugged, which adds a bit of a thrill to the chapter. Plus, I was able to hint at the dangers of a certain coin Arrellia was given, whereas originally she was just given it and it later came back to bite her. Kind of a plot hole right there. But that’s all cleared up now.

I also made Tancard a little bit creeper by adding only an additional line of dialogue. Originally he gives Arrellia a letter for her grandfather and she thinks nothing of it. This time around she realizes that this stranger had the letter prewritten, and Tancard admits that it wasn’t a chance meeting.

Ooo, mysterious.

Hopefully today will be another great day of writing!

 

Until next time,

Chase

 

Camp NaNoWriMo Word Count as of 1:28 pm: 13, 555

 

 

Camp NaNoWriMo: Day 5 & Fireworks Video

Happy day 5 of Camp NaNoWriMo!

I haven’t done any writing yet today, but I’ve finished some very important world building to assist in my rewrite. It partly had to do with reorganizing the main country’s government and actually drawing the capital city so that I could keep everything straight.

Now I’m hoping to get 2,000 words written today.

Chapter Two is really just a big mess. It’s my least favorite chapter in the original draft of my novel, and I’m starting to see why.

  1. Even though there’s a really good hook to start off the chapter, it quickly loses steam. There’s plenty of big events in the chapter to keep it interesting and to build the plot, but it just doesn’t seem to work.
  2. There’s a lot being introduced to the readers here
  3. It’s 17 pages long, which would be fine if it was better

So, I’ll be trying to work through that chapter or at least figure out how to make it better.

In the meantime, I also uploaded a new video to the YouTube channel. It’s just some of the neighborhood fireworks from last night’s Fourth of July festivities. Now you can see why I’ve been annoyed by people letting them off all week. There’s just so many people in the neighborhood lighting them off.

Until next time,

Chase

Camp NaNoWriMo Word Count: 8004

Camp NaNoWriMo: Day 1

Day 1 of Camp NaNoWriMo is almost over.

So far today I have gone through most of the first chapter of my novel and done some revising. I’ve even changed the names of some minor characters and changed the name of a god and an entire island nation, so that’s also some good progress.

This marks the first day I have worked on writing my novel since November and the first that I’ve done planning for it since January.It feels really good to be back. I really missed writing and creating my worlds, and it makes me not want to stop this year, not until a complete draft of this novel is finally done.

A Clash of Crimson is probably going to take a long time to finish, but I’ll just keep saying that I want it done this year.

Now, back to Camp.

I set my goal for this year at 30,000 words for my revision/rewrite of the first part of my novel. However, I’m noticing that I’m going a bit faster than expected. I probably should have just stuck with my normal 50,000.

My goal for this month is to finish revising my novel’s first half and to start writing the second half. That way I can write the sequel for NaNoWriMo 2016 in November.

I’ll try and keep you guys updated daily this month.

Until next time,

Chase

Progress as of 9:50 pm PDT:  3924

Changes to my novel

I will keep this post short and sweet, since there is more planning to do and fun to have at the lake.

Earlier this week I shared that I wasn’t feeling my novel anymore. I think I have fixed that. I took my novel back to the drawing board and took a nice look at it. The problem was partially the plot and partially the characters. Arrellinor, the main protagonist, was not interesting enough on her own. Furthermore, the plot was really created when I was in 7th grade and expanded upon when I was in 10th and 11th grade.

I had only made a few minor tweaks to the plot this year when I started Camp NaNoWriMo for the novel’s rewrite, where I hoped to fix the overwhelming issues I was having with it.

I fixed most of the problems, but I also created a few more, so I knew this complete redo was coming.

For starters, the novel is no longer called Prophecy of Euphinor. That title just wasn’t jumping out at me. Now, I am calling it A Clash of Crimson, which will be followed (hopefully) by A Mountain of Shadow and A Banquet of Fire.

I am also changing the POV. Instead of having only 1 POV from Arrellinor, I am introducing a few brand new characters that I had created for a separate story I started a few days ago. The idea for that novel just popped into my head and the planning went well, but I realized it would work better as part of my current novel as a substory that moves everything forward and ultimately helps with the resolution I have planned.

I am pleased with how the outline is looking. Now I just have to get to rewriting some chapters, deleting others, and adding lots of new content.

Camp NaNoWriMo Update 6: the halfway mark

I am official just over halfway done with Camp NaNoWriMo. I am just a little bit ahead of schedule, but I am suffering compared to last year.

My novel is beginning to look nothing like the draft that existed last year, although it will still need a lot of editing and review before I decide to do anything with it, such as sending copies off to my trusted friends to tear apart (I have very honest friends, and from experience I know they will find everything and anything.)

For now I am still battling through the brand new Chapter Four: A Noble Massacre. Previously titled The Arrow it was about a trip the main character takes with her friends to escape from the secrets and lies of the kingdom. The trip ended with an attack on the village they are staying in and Arrellia discovers that she can use magic.

Now, the chapter opens with an intense session of the Royal Court, where King Eckard threatens ambassadors from a distant empire because of their demands, while staying true to a medieval court of the day. That’s where I left off, just before the noble massacre takes place.

Oh, I also made a new temporary cover for Prophecy of Euphinor.

Euphinor cover new

My progress for July 2015 Camp NaNoWriMo:

Day – Total wordcount

  1. 1640
  2. 5502
  3. 5848
  4. 6032
  5. 9042
  6. 11706
  7. 12843
  8. 14055
  9. 14543
  10. 14543
  11. 17828
  12. 19431
  13. 22033
  14. 23835
  15. In Progress

Camp NaNoWriMo Update 5: new challenges

It is now day eight of Camp NaNoWriMo, and writing everyday is starting to become that rhythm I enjoy so much. Nothing beats (okay, that’s exaggerated, but its still enjoyable) writing from dawn til dusk with a bunch of vinyl records playing in the background.

For the past two days I have taken a lunch break from writing, an evening jog, and a break for dinner. My novel has my full attention, which is really great, because it needs it.

I just finished Chapter Two last night, which means I can start writing Chapter Three, which is where things really get interesting. Chapter Two didn’t go how I wanted it, although its much better than the old chapter that was in its place from Camp NaNo 2014. I wanted to build character and show the different sides of Arrellia Sharp. I think I managed to do those two things. I also wanted to build mystery and tension at the end of the chapter, which I think I failed at pretty badly. The mystery is there, but no tension.

I also think the middle of the chapter killed it, so I’ll have to go back to it later on. Right now I’m ready to move on to better parts of the novel.

Along with the writing, I have managed to come up with a few more ideas for later on, including the completely different plots for chapters three and four. Things just got more political than when I wrote them in 2014, and I also cut out one of the big adventure scenes in chapter four in favor of increased tension and conflict at home.

I have also set the following goals for my novel:

  • Make horses realistic
  • Include complex relationships
  • Avoid the “Ding Dong my IQ’s Gone” fantasy trope where love makes a character stupid
  • Emphasize that prophecies in this would are not absolute, which should lead to some interesting conflict at some point

Now, here are my current stats:

Total word count by day:

  • July 1: 1640
  • July 2: 5502
  • July 3: 5848
  • July 4: 6032
  • July 5: 9042
  • July 6: 11706
  • July 7: 12843

Camp NaNoWriMo Update 4

I failed to get any writing done yesterday. I spent two hours trying to figure out the second chapter of my novel and it just wasn’t going anywhere. 

I was starting to get stressed over it so I closed my laptop lid and played the first three levels of Halo: Reach.

After having lunch my mom insisted that I watch American Sniper, so I did. That movie was so good and very sad. If you haven’t seen it, please do!

Then I watched the fireworks in my neighborhood, which lasted from sunset until 1 a.m. 

As I went to bed I started thinking about my novel, wondering how I could better connect chapter one to the already existing chapter three. Now, I think I have it. My new idea can connect the reader to Arrellia’s past, her view of life, the kingdoms view on life, and the mystery that existed in the first draft from over a year ago. Yet, I have a feeling it will do better than that. 

Now, all I have to do is give it a try.