It’s been a while since I’ve done an update on my novel-in-progress, Olague. I shut it down last year once the holiday season kicked in, but since the beginning of 2016 it’s been going very well. Last night I finished up Chapter Three and am delighted with how the novel’s turning out. While I like to use outlines, especially when it comes to novels, they’re usually pretty vague outlines, more like a rough structure to the chapter and the part of the book, to get me going, and then I like to just let the characters do their thing, live in the world and tell the story.
It still amazes me – and I know I’ve said this a couple times on Bookbanter – how the characters will act and react, and simply live in their world, making choices and decisions that I never predicted, expected, or sometimes saw coming in any way. I’ll be stuck on some plot point wondering how it’s going to play out, and when I can’t figure it quite out, I’ll just sit down and write and let the characters figure it out . . . which they always, astonishingly, pleasantly do.
What has perhaps been the surprise that has made me happiest is the growing length of the novel. I knew it was going to be long, likely the longest thing I’ve ever written. I slapped on an estimated word count of a quarter of a million words, which is just a round about figure, but seems a pretty accurate one so far. I’m just happy that my characters so far have had a lot of their own stories to tell, filling the pages (or the screen) with words.
Now for some fun numbers. Below is the breakdown of the chapters of the novel so far and the total word count at the bottom. I have an ongoing word count meter at the top of the main Bookbanter page on the right side, which I update as the word count changes.
Prologue: 2,352 words
Chapter One: 11,675 words
Chapter Two: 8,811 words
Chapter Three: 12,154 words
TOTAL WORDS: 34,992 words