Nearly 20,000 words in. Apparently a book needs to be about 90,000. I’m on Chapter 11 to give it more meaning to people who don’t count words, writing about episode 2 of 7. Episode as in psychotic episode but I don’t actually like to use that word so I just shorten it to episode.
Caspar used to say when he came into the house after being in his writing shed, ‘I’ve written 2,000 words.’ It didn’t mean diddly squat to me so faithfully each time I would reply, ‘Oh that’s good. Are they all different?’ 2,000 in one day is the best I’ve ever been able to achieve. Most days I might manage less than a page and lots of tinkering with what’s already written. The creative force feels more like a thick slow lava than a rushing river in me at the moment. But showing up, every morning and chipping away at it will eventually amass to a book. And hopefully the next one will be easier.
Every 10,000 words, I send off my work to published novelist Elizabeth Diamond, for a critique. She’s brutally honest and usually right. She’s not actually brutal but it’s hard hearing what needs changing page after page with no mention of what I’ve done well, just a few complimentary words at the beginning to set me up for the fall.