Posted by: oneyearbook | March 20, 2009

Friday wrap-up

So Week 1 comes to an end. (That means, mathematicasters, that there are 51 weeks left in this project.)

So was the first week a success?

Well, as it stands right now, Instructions for Cheating at History is over 12,000 words long.

I’d say it was a success. Next week we move into some dangerous territory: a 2,000-word-a-day minimum, plus I’ll tackle some longer sections that have been tantalizing me for a bit but that I wasn’t willing to tackle during Week 1. Also, I’ll probably schedule at least a half-day of library research; it’s getting to the point, in the scenes that are pre-1935, that I’m really starting to think that some background reading would be a worthwhile effort. Yesterday I wrote a scene that required a small city to have more than two fire trucks in 1929. I have no idea how realistic that is. None at all. You could tell me that they would have had horse-drawn fire trucks and I’d say, “Alright. But that ruins the scene the way it’s written.” Or you could tell me that they would have had 10 trucks and I would nod sagely. “Oh good, that fits my story.” And chaperoning. Would a fifteen-year-old girl living in a rural environment an hour out of the city be allowed to pal around, alone, with a seventeen-year-old boy, in 1924? Still no idea.

Sometimes I think that ignorance is bliss, when it comes to first drafts, but I don’t think that ignorance-ruins-careful-plotting (or -ignorance-forces-radical-detouring-explanations-for-error) will feel all that blissful a few months down the road.



  1. I’m pretty sure girls have been sneaking out to pal around with boys since, oh, the beginning of time.

    Whether or not they could do it in daylight, and without sneaking, I can’t say.

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