Ghostwriter Diaries 07

NotebookHappy New Year! I hope you all enjoyed the holiday season – I certainly did. But, with the wine rack looking sadly depleted and twelfth night just around the corner, it’s time to take down the tinsel and hang up the ghostwriting schedule. It’s a tight schedule, one that requires me to average three chapters a week.

I’m currently on target to deliver the first batch of chapters at the end of January. Since I’m only on week one, that’s not much of a boast. But I am getting a sense of how many hours I need to commit to get this job done. Each chapter is around 2,000 words, and this morning I wrote a complete chapter in about two and a half hours. Do the maths and you’ll come to the same conclusion as me: I need to find just seven and a half hours a week in order to keep this show on the road.

I can afford to write that quickly because I’m working from such a detailed outline. With the heavy lifting already done, I need only focus on the detail. That’s where the devil is, of course, so I’m under no illusions. This morning was smooth water, but at some point in the process I’ll surely hit the rapids.

This latest chapter introduced the final POV character in the novel, one from whose point of view I haven’t yet written. So it was useful not only in terms of setting benchmarks, but also establishing tone. Following today’s session, I now have a handle on all my main characters – a sense of where they’re starting out from and how that informs where they need to end up. As a bonus, I’ve discovered something I didn’t know about myself.

I really like writing about castles.

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