RoW 80 Check-In: July 27.

I noticed that the main post for A Round of Words in 80 Days mentions figuring out how the goal set has been working and whether or not there needs to be any tweaking. I can say right now, considering I’m supposed to be several chapters ahead and yet I’m still only on the first chapter, that, yeah, my goal was set a little high. The challenge I face now is trying to figure out how that goal can be reassessed. It was pretty simple when I started out: finish the book. A pretty weighty goal, obviously, but a very clear, concise, easy to measure one.

I may simply use the marker I use on my monthly novel project: at least a page a day. At the end of the round, I should be at 80 pages, nothing to shake a stick at. And who knows, maybe things will pick back up and I can inspire myself to finish it completely by the end of the Round. I think we’ll go with that. I’m fairly certain I’m right on track with at least a page a day. I’m almost certain I’ll be able to at least get that first chapter finished today; I was struggling a little with the way the conversation was going, but I reached that “break point” where a character just says one thing, and everything falls into place. I love that feeling.

One thing I was thinking about as I was writing along with Chapter One is details. I got stuck in a conversation that reveals a certain detail about the main character, a detail I rather like, a detail I believe tells the reader quite a bit about him, but it’s also a detail that does not have any specific relation to the plot as a whole. I wish it did. Maybe I’ll discover a way to work it in eventually, but it has me wondering. I would love the crisp sort of writer that does not present anything more than what is ultimately necessary, that every detail has some important meaning later, but, at the same time, some things, like descriptions of the setting or appearances, are just nice things for a reader to have. And if it tells you something about the character, isn’t it still useful?

Just something that’s been in the back of my mind. I think I might just have to conceive of a way for it to become useful later, just because I don’t want to get rid of it, but, again, it might be one of those things where you have to kill you darlings. We shall see.

Good luck to my fellow RoW-ers! Almost August!



  1. Find a way to work that detail in…..I don’t know what it is, or who it’s about, but you seem to love it! That means it must stay!
    And, even a page a day is more than you’ll have if you don’t write at all! Sometimes, life gets in the way of our writing time. As long as you’re writing, don’t fret about it. Progress is the word – and you seem to know that already! Thanks for stopping by and have a great week. ~ Nadja

  2. Even if you’re behind at least you’re putting work it! A page a day is better than nothing and you’ll have that story completed in no time. Slow and steady, remember.

    Good luck with your tweaked goal!

  3. As a reader, I don’t really care about those rules I read about as a writer. As long as it’s interesting, I will read it and like it and won’t analyze further. Maybe it’s just me, dunno.
    Hope you’ll work it out eventually. Maybe you could include it later if it seems out of place where you have it now.

  4. I’ve had to tweak my goals every week so far, haha. So I think if you’re tweaking your goals, it’s all good, you’re just in the process of figuring out what works for you. And it sounds like you’ve made great progress so far!

    Honestly, in workshops and stuff, people have told me more often that I need to add things than I need to take things out. So while having unnecessary detail is a common problem, not all detail is unnecessary and while spare writing has its place, people also love their drapes. If you feel that a detail is important and really adds an important dimension to the story, then I say trust your judgment. 😉

  5. I like reading little details in stories even if they don’t link in any greater sense. It is the little quirks about people that make them interesting.

    80 pages is definately nothing to shake a stick at and if it makes you feel you are making more progress then it is a great goal. And definately measureable.

    Have a great rest of your week!

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