A Week of Mondays – Week 2 #BehindtheBook

In case, you’re wondering, I’ve switched to posting weekly instead of daily. The daily posts just seemed a bit excessive. However, I’m still recording my daily stats and notes, I’ll just be consolidating them into one weekly post for ease of reading and following.

So, in this post, you’ll find my weekly summary (WITH CHART!!!) and my daily break-downs so you can read as much as you’re interested in!

Click on chart to see it bigger.

Mood Chart Week 2


Date: 9/10/14 – 9/16/14
Weekly Words Written: 5,259
Total Words to Date: 17,147
Number of Writing Days: 4
Average Daily Words: 1,593 (1100 lower than last week)
Weekly Pages Written: 23
Total Pages To Date: 71
Average Daily Pages: 5.75 (1.25 lower than last week)
Weekly Chapters Completed: 4
Total Chapters to Date: 15
Average Mood  (1-10): 8.5 (.5 higher than last week!)


SOOOO! Week 2 is complete! Unfortunately I had to miss three full writing days this week. BOO! One because I was traveling and two because I was teaching a workshop all weekend. But I still made great progress on the other days. And as you’ll see from my mood chart. I’m still having a lot of fun with the draft and feeling good about it!

As you’ll see from the stats above, this was a slightly less productive week (on average) than the first week, but a slightly better week mood wise.

My big concerns right now: Day 1 of the Week of Mondays is STILL too long. I’ll be doing some serious cutting later. But I’m trudging on because I won’t know what needs to be cut or trimmed down until I have the full picture. So I’m sticking to my usual tactic of write now, edit later, and barely even going back to reread anything I’ve written. In fact, I don’t think I reread any previous chapters at all this week.

My goal for the next few days is get to the end of Day 1 because I’m going on a super fun writing retreat this weekend and I’d like to be working on a fresh new day during the retreat.



Day 8

Date: 9/10/14
Words Written: 1,416
Pages Written: 7
Chapters Completed: 1
Time Elapsed: 1 hour
General Mood (1-10): 9 (Woo hoo!)

My first 9 mood rating since the beginning! I just LOVED this chapter. Why? It was unexpected. I had it all outlined out from yesterday using bullet points and then ENTER my favorite character (Gosh, he keeps getting better and better!) and he stole the scene (and my heart)…yet again. He took it in a new direction and I loved it. I can almost picture him looking at my little bullet pointed outline and going, “PFF! I throw dirt on your outline!” I still managed to accomplish everything plot-wise that needed to be in the scene, but the scene itself was just way better than I expected. Don’t you LOVE when that happens?!

Also, I was able to steal a little text from a stalled book I started a few years ago that never saw the light of day. I was bummed when I gave that book up because there were some really funny scenes that I loved. Today I actually got to use some of that writing! Just goes to show, you should NEVER give up on anything you write. You never know when it might be re-purposed and given new life.

Day 9

Date: 9/11/14
Words Written: 1,557
Pages Written: 6
Chapters Completed: 1
Time Elapsed: 1.5 hours
General Mood (1-10): 8

Not much to say today. The writing went fast. I was pleased with the scene. I am worried about how LONG this first day is becoming. It’s already 15,000 words and I’m not anywhere near day 2! Needless to say, things will have to be cut eventually, but I’m trying not to think too much on that yet. I just want to keep going, follow my outline, and make those big decisions later when I can see the book as a full picture, and not a choppy bunch of microscenes.

I’m about to travel for work so I may not be writing much in the next few days. My goal is not to fall TOO far behind on my word count. But I think this solid start over the first week and a half has put me in a good position to take a few days off for travel. I will TRY to write on the road, but it’s always easier said than done!

Day 10

Date: 9/12/14
Words Written: 1,107
Pages Written: 5
Chapters Completed: 1.5
Time Elapsed: 1.5 hours
General Mood (1-10): 9

I LOVE the scene I wrote today. I feel like my character came to life on the page today and showed her true colors. She made sense today for the first time. She was fun and flirty before. But now it’s like she’s actually committing. Ready to take this journey with. It’s funny, nothing really HUGE happened in this chapter. It was a small chapter plotwise, but something about giving her space to just talk, is what let her out of her shell.

Yesterday, I thought I’d had come up with a way to remedy my ever troublesome prologue. I was convinced I’d figured out how to fix it. But when I sat down today to employ my idea, it totally fell flat. It was so much more dynamic and effective in my head! I hate when that happens. So back to the drawing board with the prologue…yet again. But I have about three failed prologue docs stored on my computer. I wouldn’t be surprised if the final prologue ends up being some combination of all those things. That’s why I never throw anything anyway. I save it all. Like a digital hoarder. You never know when something might come in handy in an unexpected way!

Okay, I’m off to hop on a plane!

Day 11


Day 12


Day 13

Date: 9/15/14
Words Written: 1,179
Pages Written: 5
Chapters Completed: 1
Time Elapsed: 45 minutes
General Mood (1-10): 8

I couldn’t write this weekend because I was teaching a writing workshop so I was a bit worried about returning today. Sometimes when you take too much time off, you lose the flow you were in and it takes a while to get back into the story and the characters. But I was pleased to find this wasn’t the case today! My character seemed to be lurking in my head, ready and waiting to return full force and finish narrating her story to me because I cranked out 5 pages in less than an hour! And I felt pretty darn good about them too!

There’s a weird transition in this chapter that I worked on today which I know will have to be smoothed out later but for now I’ve decided not to worry about it until later. Future Jessica’s problem. Future Jessica is a PRO at smoothing out awkward transitions! Onward!

Day 14



In case you missed the first post, I’m live blogging (diary style) the progress of writing my new manuscript,  A WEEK OF MONDAYS (which will be released by FSG/Macmillan in Spring 2016), to give fellow writers (and readers) an inside look into my writing process. And maybe give me a little insight as well!

Click here to read the first post or you can follow all the posts by clicking here.

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