photo from stock.xchng
photo from stock.xchng

Well, the weather outside is frightful, but I have tea, a pile of blankets, and a fluffy white cat, so I’m snuggled up indoors and busily writing.

Some days the magic in a manuscript just works, and I’ve been fortunate to have a couple days like that so far this week. Words were flying from my fingertips Monday and Tuesday, so I’m just a few words short of my word-count goal for the entire week—and that’s only from two days worth of writing. I’m at that point in the story where the action is building, so maybe I’m just excited to reach the climax of the story. Who knows. Whatever it is, I’ll take it.

Last week I blogged about getting to know your villain. Something has happened in this WIP that’s never happened before. I have two villains, and I actually like one of them. He’s got the strongest voice of any of the characters—snappy and wry and quick with the comebacks. His motivations, his desires, his thinking processes are clearer to me than any of the other characters, and his back story is pretty fascinating. He’s rather unpredictable, but that’s part of the fun. But what do you do when you have a cheeky villain who always steals the spotlight?

Meanwhile, I’m still trying to get to know my hero and heroine. I feel like I don’t know as much about their normal, everyday lives—before goblins and warlock curses turned their world upside-down—as I should at this point. On the one hand, I don’t want to halt the progress I’m making with the story, and as the characters get deeper into the action, they’re revealing themselves to me. I see it this way: Much of what I’m learning as I write this first draft will influence how I revise the story. So I’ll just keep plugging away. In any case, I have a feeling that I’ll be doing lots of character exercises in the coming months to really make this story sing.

On a very snowy day in Virginia, here’s my midweek #ROW80 check-in. Stay warm and safe out there, everyone!

ROW80Logocopy1.) Finish a draft of “Good, Old-Fashioned Magic”: 2,700 to 3,000 words per week. Wrote 2,683 words Monday and Tuesday, so I’m on for this week. With some luck and elbow grease, I’ll have a finished draft of my first paranormal romance novella within a few weeks!

2.) Read to hone my craft. Reading chapter 7 in Julia Cameron’s “Walking in this World.” It’s all about flow and discovering a sense of momentum, so I’m trying to soak up as much of her wisdom as possible.

3.) Blog at least two times a week, on Wednesdays and Sundays. On target so far.

4.) Check in on Twitter daily and on WANA Tribe at least once/week. Yes on Twitter. Not yet on WANA Tribe.

5.) Comment on 5-6 blogs per day, Monday-Thursday. On track so far.

6.) Super-secret project: Write two articles/posts each week for that project. Nothing yet, since I’ve been caught up in WIP.

A Round of Words in 80 Days (ROW80), founded by author Kait Nolan, is the writing challenge that knows you have a life. Click here to cheer on fellow participants, or check out the #ROW80 hashtag on Twitter.

What about you? Is the weather frightful where you live? How are your writing goals coming along this month? And do you ever find yourself still getting acquainted with your characters well into the first draft?