I'm officially calling it: The Holidays Are Done!
I'm am so done with holidays. No more cards. No more baking. No more decorating. No more wrapping. No more leaving the house and dealing with traffic. No more!
Last night, I took down all the Christmas decorations around the house, had the tree moved to the basement, and moved all the furniture to its normal places around the room after vacuuming. Other than the messy kitchen, the interior of the house looks like none of it ever happened. Today, my O.H. is taking down the lights on the exterior of the house if he can get out before the snow flurries are supposed to hit.
While I love the holiday season, I have to admit that by December 26, I am ready to pack it all up and shove it to the back of my mind until next December. However, it's my O.H.'s tradition not to take any of it down until after the start of the new year. So I waited. But he was out last night so I pulled out the boxes and quickly got the house back to normal, leaving me free to write uninterrupted today. (Yay!)
Speaking of writing, the second book in the new series is coming along nicely. The first chapter needs some heavy tweaking. The pacing feels off and the opening line isn't particularly strong, but that's all very fixable. I've started doing more timed sessions -- the 1,000 words in 1 hour. I am very pleased to report that most of the time, my 1-hour session results in a word count of at least 1,500 words. In fact, I've managed over 1,800 words in one hour once (New High Score). With a strong pace like this, I am aiming for a minimum of 5,000 words a day. If I can keep up this strong pace, I should be able to hit my deadline of mid-February with no problem. This will be one of the fastest books I've ever written.
There is a snag, though. I don't have this one completely plotted out. I usually have an entire book outlined out before I even start the first chapter, but this one doesn't want to plot. I have an insane amount of notes on what needs to happen, what the plot and subplots are, questions that need answers, and other interesting tidbits, but it's not in organized order yet. So far, I've outlined a few chapters, wrote those chapters, and then gone back to outline some more.
Right now, I am finishing up chapter 4 and going on to complete chapter 5 today. I will have one more chapter that is on the outline before I have to stop and do more planning. After completing seven novels for publication and four novellas, this feels like an odd way to write, but I'm going to go with it since it's working.
To quote a wise old adage: If it ain't broke, don't fix it.