Looking back, I realize how lofty my goals were and how crazy I was. I had one month to practically do all the character stuff you can imagine. Including character Arcs. Those dreaded torture methods are going to be the death of me.
And being me, I decided I would do the novel tomorrow. Sadly tomorrow never came and it all boiled down to the last 6 days of 2018. There was near tears, sleepless nights, and hours of sitting on my butt on a hard pink plastic Ikea swivel chair hunched over my magical notebook.
So here you go: a snippet free blog post that was written by a person that hadn’t slept in 30 something hours.
It was on the 27th of January that I embarked on my first all-nighter. The idea had implanted in my mind months before and I was going to get it done. After filling up several water bottles, grabbing several cookies and crackers, and a stash of pens, I made my way to bed.
No way was I going to sit at my desk all night. So I was under the covers snuggled up tight working. Disclaimer: *what you are reading right now was written at the moment only edited to make sense. Everything is raw and emotional*
It started out fine. I had high spirits and was getting things done. Until I saw the next thing on my list.
I literally stared at the ominous words on my screen for a few minutes, dreading what I had to do. It was another character Arc. I had one under my belt and I was happy with that, but I still had 3 more to go. Why on earth did I decide that my book would have 2 protagonists, 1 antagonist, and a sidekick that deserves the character arc since there is so much plot that revolves around them?
I put on motivating and upbeat music to get in the mood. Now I’m feeling energized after finding the song that speaks to Micah; Alone by Allan Walker
Still slugging through Asher’s character Arc, but it’s going easier after the upbeat music went on.
I moved onto character interviews with my antagonist, Jackson Gray. Got bored 30 minutes in and switched to his backstory since that is going to take alone time. Subtitled it, Buckle up, it’s gonna get wild! I think the effects are kicking in. Since I’ve lived off of an hour and a half of sleep before, I think I’ll be fine.
After drinking a gallon of water I decided to snack on these Christmas cookies. They were giving away free boxes at my grandparent’s church so my grandparents gave us a box. Let me tell you, there is way more than 25 odd cookies. There are probably around 60 cookies. But anyway, they were supposed to be snowmen but they looked like pumpkins with a head stuck on it and three holes down the middle.
As I was almost through Character Arc stuff I realized that there are like 50 questions to answer for each Arc. *Silently weeps into pillow* Lovely. Just what I wanted. I’ll finish up my 17 character things on the 27 and 28th, questions on 29th and break on 30th, and then type it all up on the 31st. BAM!!!! FINISHED IN TIME FOR 2019!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Even halfway through that morning I still hadn’t fully accepted the fact that I had stayed up all night.
On the bright side, I had accomplished quite a lot. I had finished several Character Arcs and interviews, plus naming the characters and providing them with all backstories. On the darker side, I still had a few Character Arcs to do along with backstory.
So… after I had accomplished all this I headed right into the next. Just kidding. I set it aside and took time to relax. I never really picked my writing back up until January 3.
When finishing up the last few backstories I was very frustrated. I didn’t know when this happened or when Jackson met Asher’s mom. That’s when I armed myself with multiple pads of sticky notes, my array of notebooks, and the large collection of markers and took over the living room.
I decided to make a timeline of what happens when. I completely messed up the dates and Jackson’s jail time. So I promptly got started. There were a few exasperating moments when I felt like scraping the whole thing, but finally, I finished.
That’s when I realized how BIG my novel’s backstory really was. The timeline itself went back 41 years and it took over a fifth of my hallway. Looking down the expansion of coloured paper, I felt a feeling of dread creeping in.
How was I going to record this? Why did I do this? I felt suddenly overwhelmed and dwarfed by the project. I was only a tiny pinprick on my whole project.
But that same afternoon was when that glorious moment occurred. I came to the end of characterization. While I love crafting the character, it’s the structuring that really makes me hate it. But now I have ended that stage! Onto the scene structure!
I apologize for the craziness that this blog post beheld. Sorry about that. But just think, you only have a few months before the snippets arrive. I’m giving you the warning to build a bomb shelter and gather supplies before that day comes. You might even make it out alive.