Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Chapter Thirteen Finished!

At least, I'm pretty sure it's finished. I have reached the point in the chapter's narrative arc (yes, every chapter has a narrative arc) that I was aiming for when I began writing (yes, I have an idea for how the chapter ends when I begin writing the chapter), so I figure I'm done. I fussed about for the longest time trying to get the last sentence of the chapter to end with the word "home," but it just wasn't coming together so I found a better solution. All of this, I see, is a bit cryptic but that's okay.

wordcountometer ~= 46,300! I haven't yet typed up the end of the chapter, so I don't have a firm word count but I'm sure it's over 46K. Which is nice.

In the next chapter, the prince of Denmark speaks nonsense, not to himself. A Swiss general brandishes a dagger. A library is broken into, maybe. Et cetera.


  1. How many chapters do you plan to have in all? Or do you just keep adding chapters as necessary until you run of out of story arc?

    Do you aim for a certain wordcount?

    Do you see this as roughly the middle of the book, or two thirds done, or one third, whatever?

  2. What, no drunken brawls, no murder, no eels? For shame Mr. Bailey.

    Congrats on all your hard work. My own has been wilted, languishing in the god-forsaken heat but it's been raining for the last few days and I believe I have come out of the fog so to speak. 5K in two days = 3 scenes with a bomb dropped at the end of the second act which will lead to the heroine making a most important decision. I think. The third act will start out with a drunken fight scene, but no eels I'm afraid. Perhaps a few lobsters.

  3. Tara: I don't worry about number of chapters, because I don't plan my books as rigorously as you do in that way. I have a book-length story arc that's roughly divided into the classic five acts of Shakespearean tragedy. Each act is divided into a 3-part story arc. Each part of these arcs is divided into some number of chapters, depending on what needs to happen and how long those things take. There's nothing set in stone. I'm sort of finding out that this story has to be told at a slower pace than I'd imagined, so there are more chapters than I thought there'd be, but I'd say I'll end up with somewhere in the neighborhood of 24 chapters. The average length of the chapters seems to be about 3500 words, so I guess I'll wind up at around 85,000 words when this draft is done. Which seems about right. I shoot for between 80-90K anyway. Anyway, I'm just past the total halfway mark now, I guess. In my five-act design, I am closing in on the end of the third act. But I tend to draft short and gain length during revisions, so I don't know how long this will be when I'm ready to send it off to my agent. Maybe between 90-100K?

  4. Anne: 5K in two days is really fast! Drunken fight scenes are good. Lobster's good, too.

    I have a wall falling on someone. Does that count?

  5. Oh now a wall! Ingenious! I wish I had thought of that.