Life's a breeze, or so it seems. I wrote 8,000 words on Sunday, another 8,000 words on Monday. With any luck, I'll keep the pace going! I can write this many words in a day, without too much trouble, as long as I know what I'm doing with the story, and don't have other things pulling at me or distracting me. Surprisingly how few days I actually cruise along like this. Seems life is always getting in the way, or I have my struggles with the story.
In any event, it is comfortable going. I don't always know exactly what's coming next, even with my outline. I just shoot for the next main goal, the main plot points along the way, and let the story unravel itself as it moves along. The characters are driving it, and the logic of what they are dealing with from moment to moment. Although some of it is destined for the meandering trash heap, every chapter delivers at least a portion that is really good stuff, conversations that draw out thoughts and concerns of the characters that advance the plot and build suspense.
The characters have more distinct personalities now, much more so than when I first started writing them. There are six characters on the island. At first I thought it might be too many, but now that they are distinct enough and unique enough, they work well together, six personalities that play off each other in various ways. I'm much more comfortable handling six characters now. Glad I didn't cut them down to four, which I almost did. The trick is in the introduction. I have to introduce no more than one or two at a time.
The mid-point came and went, and the twist is now falling into place, driving the action and building a new momentum for this second half of Act II, which is where I am at the moment. I think there are 28 chapters done, and I'm in chapter 29 right now, but that's subject to change. I'm happy to have shorter chapters this time around. Much better than the huge 10k-word chapters of my last novel, although that seemed to fit the story just fine. Still, 2k - 3k is a good average to shoot for and mine are generally there. The past few have been more on the 3k side.
Well, that's all. Just noting that there is progress. I won't be able to finish within February. Wish I hadn't lost that time to being sick. I'll push right along though, and finish it as quickly as possible, within the first week of March.
Wishing everyone else good progress with their word counts,