Good gentlemen, gentlewomen, and gentlecreatures who read this blog, I am pleased to alert you to the fact that in late December I decided it was time to make a concentrated push to get the first draft of The Children of the Sun finished up and out to my early-draft readers. Thus, I began the 1,747 words per day challenge on December 27th.
“What’s the 1,747 word challenge?” you ask? Why, it’s a challenge to myself to write at least 1,747 words every day from now until the end of January.
“Why 1,747 words?” you ask? Well, because when I started the challenge, I was at 87,136 words, and I figure the book is going to be about 150,000 words long (about the same size as Blood Hunt), and so I determined that 1,747 words a day would get me to 150,000 on January 31. If the book isn’t finished at that point, it will be very close! Also, “seventeen-forty-seven” just sounds nice when you say it out loud.
“How’s it going?” you ask? Swimmingly! So far I’ve written 16,750 words since the challenge started, which is an average of 1,861 words per day! I’ve only come in below 1,747 once, and that was on New Year’s Eve (where I still managed a thousand words before my wife and I began gorging ourselves on oysters and champagne). If you discount that day, I’m averaging more like 1,965!
“Why should I care?” you ask? Because the faster I finish the first draft, the faster I can get it out to my early readers — people who I trust to go through the book and tell me which parts of it are crap. The faster I get it to them, the faster they can get their feedback to me, and the faster I can start on the second draft, and … well, you get the idea. This whole process leads up to me releasing The Children of the Sun, and I would hope that we can all agree that the earlier I do that, the better!
So, stay tuned. There will be further updates on the 1,747 challenge. ALSO, I will be releasing more than 15,000 spoiler-free words from The Children of the Sun in early February. The story is a flashback called “Amun Sa and the Girl from the Desert” and tells Ashayt’s backstory. It’s integral to the plot of The Children of the Sun, but it also stands alone. I’m even having Karla Ortiz do an illustration for it! The cost to you, the reader, to download this story? ZERO DOLLARS! Who loves ya?