Some people turn on the spigot and words pour out. They can reach over 100,000 words, then have to cut.
Not me. My words are stingy, little boogers that make me work for every single one of them.
As always, for every book I write, when I reach the near end of the second middle (near 54,000 words), I look at my plot points and panic. I just know I don’t have enough ideas and twists to reach 70,000+ words. I think that EVERY time. And guess where I am in Jazzi book 5 now? Yup. Almost 54,000 words. And I’m worried.
I have more plot points, mind you. More ideas. More suspects and questions and clues. But at this point, my writing momentum starts to fizzle. I always start out strong. The first fourth of every book is an adventure, introducing new characters, new subplots, a new murder to solve. And then the middle muddle starts, but my middles are sort of divided in half. The second fourth of the overall book leads to a new turning point. And often–sadly–since I write mysteries, I end up with a second dead body at the middle of the book–a victim who changes the direction of the story, makes my protagonist rethink her original opinions. It’s the third fourth of each book that slows me down. It feels like pulling teeth to keep the momentum going, to keep interviewing one person after another and keep it interesting and keep subplots chugging along.
I’m almost to the last fourth of the story, and that’s when things start to pick up, when my story gathers speed and clues start coming together. I’m almost there. I can feel it. And then the days of sitting fanny in chair and plodding and sweating will pay off. By next Monday, I’ll be ready for my fingers to fly over the keyboard again. Until then, well . . . I have a little more to go.
Wherever you are in your work, keep at it, and happy writing!