Aekhartain, Updates, Writing

Icarus Child Update: Week Two

Week 2 Total Word Count: 46,000

Woo! This book is flying!

Well, sort of. Writing-wise I’m down to three days a week when I have enough free time to make it worth my while to sit down and get stuff done, but when I do I’m making it count. Which is lovely. If I get a chance to focus and have the right music on I can scribble out a chapter in an hour and a half, so I’m trying to get three chapters done a day – depending on how long they are, of course. If they’re short I might manage four.

There’s a reason why I don’t do NaNoWriMo, because once I establish a set routine and give myself a goal of getting the book done by This Day it all tends to snowball and I get very competitive with myself. Last time I did NaNo I started off aiming for two to three thousand words a day, then I realised I wouldn’t be able to write at all for the last week of November and it all went a bit crazy. By the end I think I was writing between ten and fifteen thousand words a day – and the little book that was supposed to be about 75K was heading for 90K and wasn’t anywhere near finished.

And it still isn’t, three years later, because if I try and touch the book my competitive instincts rise up and order to me to finish it now, now, now! Who cares about the pirates? Add in a ghost and some astral projection and everything will be fine! And kill that snooty kid while you’re at, no one will even notice. Then put in a race over the beach – that’ll be so cool. You can literally have rocks falling so everyone dies! 

Except that this is a multi-book series and I need some of those characters to survive. And I like them too much to kill them all.

Rocks fall. Everyone dies. Really cool!

But –

Rocks. Fall. Everyone. Dies. Dead.

Yeah, ‘kay, no… I’ll just put this one away for now then.

So. I don’t do that anymore. (Which is a shame, because there are some parts of that book I adore. I must head back to that world sometime. It’s the one where Tobi and Faron come from. I love that world.)

Anyway, yes, back to this book. Even though I’m only writing three days a week, my competitive instincts are rising (I’m only ever competitive with myself or as part of a team, which is why I was so relieved to break my arm when I was nine so I could quit gymnastics before they made me compete anymore). However, instead of a daily word count race – because I rarely have a completely free day to write in – I seem to be pushing for a weekly thing. The first week I hit 20K, the second I managed 25K. I’m now in week three and my first writing day went over 10K, so looks like it’s all on schedule to make my brain explode. Also, I should get the book finished before Christmas as I must be over halfway now. Seriously, I must, it’s over 50K words now.

Also all the major players seem to have finally arrived. Yay! There’s also a new lesson to be learned from this series – other than Keep Away from Talking Islands, They Will Possess You! The new one is Never Trust a Foundling, or other sundry washed up bodies that appears anywhere near you. Nothing good ever happens. Rocks might not fall (though I’m not ruling that out because there are cliffs everywhere) but someone will die. Or that might just be the island. Maybe I’ll stick with the first one and add They Will Kill You! after the bit about possessing people. I may need to put up signs. Those will totally work.

Ah well, another normal week in Ima-land. Have a completely non-spoilery snippet conversation between two children on a beach, and I’ll get back to wrestling this story into (ha!) submission.

Cover_3 Icarus ChildHis attempt at humour coaxed a small smile from the girl. “I’m not that bad,” she muttered. “I just get curious.”

Icastar snorted. “Remind me again about how we got caught by the tide that time, until Simmien had to come and rescue us and nearly got trapped himself in a rock pool.”

Morvoren pouted with annoyance. “I was just counting.”

“Barnacles. You were trying to count barnacles.”

“But didn’t you want to know how many were on those rocks before they all got away?”

“They’re barnacles, Morri. They don’t go anywhere, and they’re all over the island. Are you really going to count them all?”


“But why?”

Confusion furrowed her brow and she sat back, tugging at her lip as she tried to think of an answer. “Why shouldn’t I count them?” she finally replied.

“No reason why not,” he agreed. “But why would you need to? What’s the point?”

She wrinkled her nose. “Do I need one? Why can’t I just count them? I like counting things.”

He smiled at her genuine confusion over his lack of understanding. “And you wonder why your mammik won’t take you with her. For all we know you’ll try to count all the people on the mainland and I’ll never see either of you again.”

“Could I?” she gasped, dark eyes wide with delight. “Could I really count them all? That would be so much better than seabirds and sand fleas.”

Icastar stared at her, appalled that he’d planted the idea in her head.

Until she giggled, rocking backwards with amusement. “Your face,” she laughed, rolling back towards him and away again. “You look like a stunned crab after a seagull’s dropped it. Splat!” She collapsed on the ground, arms and legs splayed, head to one side, eyes crossed, her tongue poking out.

“Lovely,” he sighed.

Merry Tuesday, everybody!

2 thoughts on “Icarus Child Update: Week Two”

  1. Nice work!

    I understand what you mean about competing with yourself. I bought a Fitbit recently and it has done wonders for getting me more active. But I worry a little bit about how long outdoing myself is sustainable.

    Do you think you’re also hitting the last half momentum with the story? They do tend to careen ahead almost on their own after a certain point.

    1. Ah, yes, when it comes to fitness I have to spread my attention over a number of different things to stop the competitiveness from rising. Which brings about its own level of fun.

      I hope you can keep staying active without overdoing it. But it’s such a nice feeling to do better than you did the day before… Good luck!

      There is definitely a little bit of momentum building. I touched on it today, where if I let myself I probably could have got everything done in a few swift chapters. Which is what happened in Crying Child, and is why that book is shorter than I intended it to be. If I’d let that happen here, though, it would have cut off a massive chunk of story that needs telling. Oops!

      Usually once I hit the last third the story takes over and I just have to hope something I put down makes sense. A tricky thing when I’m wrestling with momentum and the old story that keeps wanting to assert itself, even though this version is completely different.

      I live for the day when I can start writing completely new stories again. I miss those days.

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