Words and numbers

So … the novel. That sounds ominous, doesn’t it? I don’t mean it to. It’s just that it feels oddly, squishily, personal to post a status update on it here. Because this blog is — what? — so impersonal and all.

It’s just that there’s something about writing about one’s writing (my writing), one’s progress (my progress), one’s process (my process), that is deeply intimate, even when I devote whole categories of my writing life to, say, my children’s bodily fluids (not to mention their conceptions. Or their births.) or my mother’s death or my household's sleeping arrangements. But, mostly, there’s a finely crafted line between real exposure and highly mediated snapshots of my life. I’m not saying that I’m really a hetero, childless, Presbyterian lover of camping or anything, but that I prefer to maintain some kind of illusion that the work of writing happens behind the scenes, to leave you, gentle readers, with the tidy end product as opposed to the messy, ugly process.

All of which is by way of saying that — oh, fine — I’m not finished yet.

Back in January, I had 200 pages and wanted to have 300 by the end of March. I have 247 pages as of today. I should point out that, in an effort to streamline the narrative, I also cut approximately 25 pages from the original 200.

Which means that I’ve actually written close to 75 pages in three months. (Honestly: I only just did that math for the first time right now.)

Which really is not so bad.

Which is, in fact, quite heartening.

I have written 75 pages of fiction in three months. That is more fiction in less time than I have ever written in my entire life. And some of the sentences in the 75 pages that I wrote over the previous 90 days actually make more sense than the preceding one. Just barely.