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1232950_28690356Title: Contortion

Series: Arcanium

Word Count: 56,506/90,000

Summary: After having toured with Arcanium for over twenty years, Valorie is considering leaving Arcanium. Her long-time relationship with Bell, the one in charge of the demonic circus, has been invalidated by a lack of deeper love, if not a lack of passion. Her interim lover, another demon, keeps straying with the circus’ mermaid. Valorie’s feeling neglected and unwanted for anything more than her ability to twist herself into knots.

When the heavily cursed fire-eater John shows willingness to do anything for Arcanium and its inhabitants to make up for the crimes he committed against them, Valorie takes the opportunity to exorcize her frustration.

She finds the mutually beneficial arrangement surprisingly satisfying…until her fiancé from twenty years ago stumbles across the circus and discovers where the woman meant to be his wife disappeared to.


I forgot to write my progress report yesterday, and then I had 6k words to write, so I saved it for today.

Between Mistress Red visiting earlier this week and Thanksgiving prep and Day, this week has been a bit slower than other weeks. However, I still reached my goal of managing 50k this month on this novel, no matter what. Now I’ve written at least 50k for two novels for NaNoWriMo. I’m at 114k for the month so far. I’m hoping to cross 125k before midnight tomorrow. It’s a strain but certainly not impossible.

The last chapter was dialogue-heavy, and that always feels so attention-deficit when I’m writing them, but they usually feel better during the reading. I have to clean them up some, but most of the dialogue stays intact. I’m much more improvisational during the writing of dialogue, to try and mimic what real dialogue is like as close as I can.

There were a few places in Contortion this week where I just wasn’t feeling it, uncertain of whether this novel was going to work, losing focus on characterization, feeling like I was repeating myself (which is part of the reason why I upped the word goal, because I’m almost sure I’m going to be cutting the repetition). I seem to remember this happening with every story – excited when I start writing it, getting jaded in the middle, feeling better by the end. That’s coming up this next week, so we’ll see how I feel then.

Contortion still strikes me as very different from the other Arcanium novels, more human, less freaky, so maybe that’s what’s shaking me. Go figure. The next few books would go back to being weird.

From what I can tell, I’ve got four more sections to write. Not scenes, not chapters, but sections. A section can be made up of one or two chapters, the way I arrange my chapter endings. That means I’ve got 30k-40k left to write. I get 11k more out of the way this weekend, I really think I can finish next week. This whole finishing novels in three weeks, I could get used to it. (Which is unfortunate, because I might not be able to sustain it in the future, so all I’ll get is frustration when it starts taking me longer again.) :)