novel work

For all that I write about the writing process on this blog, I don’t quite understand my own. I’m writing a novel! And I’ve decided to talk about it, to keep myself from giving up entirely once I’ve surpassed 10k words.

My writing group is helping immensely. They are wonderful. They’ve agreed to read this thing as I’m writing it, which is another failsafe upon which I’m hinging the completion of this thing, god bless their souls. Because I have very slowly come to realize that I don’t actually like to write alone. Odd, right? On its surface, writing is such a solitary act. And, on my surface, I am a very quiet and solitary person. (That façade breaks quickly when I have found a comfortable space, btw.)

But like, publishing is a difficult thing to wait for when you’re hoping for feedback on a story, and I am filled with impatience. And coffee. My jittery veins have no time for editors to decide if I am worthy. Certainly not when I’m trying to decide if Protagonist A’s motives are clear enough to justify her eventual betrayal of Protagonist B.

In any case, this sharing has helped ease my ever-present worry over the five thousand things wrong with living in America in 2020. Yes, Covid sneaks its way into everything. Even this blog post, sorry. This year is isolating and terrible, but I’ve been able to sneak away to a distant reality in drafting a novel, and having a community to help me sit down and write words on a near daily basis has kept me from doom-scrolling my phone and wondering if I should remake my animal crossing island for the third time. (I shouldn’t. Someone stop this.)

Here are three fun things from my current project. My notebook app was deleted when Zoom needed its five hundredth update for some god damned reason, and I am trying to get used to making my notes by hand, but occasionally some will go in a text to my husband. The latest was “You stole a knife in chapter six, remember to use it.”

Here’s some text regarding the small college town it’s set in:

Oddfellow College was a series of disappointingly squat buildings crouched against the rocky shore of the Columbine River. Most budding wizards were eager for tall spires and Euclidian halls, but after years rebuilding all those spires that had been blasted into the river, the committees in charge of college funding found that a sturdy building with thick walls was more likely to withstand the inevitable errant spells. The library, a granite monolith of gray stone and sturdy angles, with windows that had been bricked increasingly smaller through the years, was by far the college’s most impressive building, but only by virtue of being it’s oldest.


And I’ve been working on character portraits because I really like to know what people look like, even if it’s in my unpracticed and cartoony style.

tuulikki devil crop

Things are happening! What joy!