Writing Diary #02 – Camp NaNoWriMo

Remember how I said I wouldn’t write the second draft of my WIP (#aroaceprincess for those who follow me on Twitter) during Camp NaNoWriMo or NaNoWriMo? Well, I lied. Camp NaNoWriMo is happening this July and well… I’ve already won it.

To be fair, my goal was very low, only 15.500 words (500 words/day), mainly because I didn’t want to write desperately like I did back on NaNoWriMo ’15 (when I wrote most of the first draft of #aroaceprincess). Since this was the second draft, I wanted it to be at least nice and not, you know, the ugliness that was the first draft. I prepared myself a lot more – I have now the summary of each book of the trilogy, lots of character profiles and at least a dozen files on worldbuilding. I know what I need to change and what I need to add (and what to take off).

Still, it wasn’t as easy as I hoped. I’ve written 18k words for this second draft and while some parts were super quick to write, others were not. This WIP (now called Queen of Hearts instead of Masked Queen) has three MCs with POV chapters, and one of the them (the queen/princess of hearts herself, Valentina) is honestly a pain to write sometimes. Lori’s and Rafael’s chapters? Easy (usually). Valentina’s? A nightmare.

It took me a while to find out why. I love Valentina. I know her. She’s the reason this trilogy exists, even if nowadays Lori and Rafael are just as important as she is. But I just didn’t love her initial chapters that much, and that was the problem, and one that was spawning other smaller (but just as annoying) problems the more I wrote. This almost made me throw more than 6k words of the second draft (during Camp NaNo!) in the trash, but thankfully I managed to save almost everything after turning her first chapter into her third or fourth (I don’t know yet), writing a new first chapter and deleting 1k words of a scene I scene I really disliked.

Honestly, I can’t wait to be done with the first act. Like I said in my previous post about QOH, the first draft I wrote during NaNoWriMo didn’t have much of a first act to speak of. It had only six scenes (against twenty-one of the second and seventeen of the third) and was basically the characters going to where the first plot point happens. I didn’t spend any time establishing anything in the first draft, and so I had to do all the work now in the second. And, again, it wasn’t as easy I’d hoped. I keep worrying about it being too long.

I still need to write more four chapters + finish the one I’m writing right now before I’m done with it, which means I still have to write 15k words or more. This second draft will be way longer than the first one, but that I had already expected.

Now that I’m finally writing it, though, I realized it probably won’t the final draft. I knew I would still need to edit a lot of stuff, but for me the second draft would the The Draft, you know, the one where you stop rewriting (or at least stop rewriting the whole thing) and start polishing everything. I’m not so sure now. The writing is honestly my weakness; my English vocabulary isn’t that great and I’m far more used to writing in Portuguese, so I know it is a skill I still need to hone a lot more before even thinking of publishing this book (on the internet for free or otherwise). A possible third draft could help with that.

Anyway, I’m excited to finally finish this book.

Which will probably happen before the end of the year, I hope.

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