Did anyone used to sing this song in school? Inch by inch, row by row, gonna make this garden grow...
The song popped into my head today when I hit 33k words on Happiest Days of My Life. I've mentioned here before that this book hasn't come as easily to me as Time of My Life or The Department, and I'll be honest that this fact has had me worried. I've always thought that my "process" was fully digesting my characters and regurgiating them back on the page. Quickly. With the words flying out of my fingers.
But it just hasn't been the case this time around. So...imagine my delight when I looked at my word count and discovered that I'd actually created something substantial. My 700 word days, though I much prefer 2k word days, had actually stacked together and yielded something pretty okay. And I sort of like this perspective: building the ms brick by brick rather than floor by floor, which is sort of what I've done in the past. It's okay to switch things up, to have your process shift as your writing style evolves. Sure, I figured that I'd actually be done with the ms by now, but I'm not, and as long as I keep chugging along, I'll get to The End long before my deadline.
I've been struggling with whether or not this slower process means somehow the ms isn't as good or is doomed for suckage, but in rereading the pages, I don't think so. I just think this one, this book feels different, and hey, as long as the end product is as strong as I want it to be, it really doesn't matter how I get there.
Anyone else write a book in a different manner than an earlier one? Did it yield better or worse results?