● How I did on last week’s goal(s)
I didn’t finish Part I as hoped, but I did break the 100K mark. Ever since going back to this story in November, it’s been hardest to write the Part I chapters, since they’re closest to the real-life murders of my characters. I’m writing about these people readjusting to their old life when they were really in dignityless graves. I did the most work on Part III by far during NaNo, and a bit on Parts IV and II. I had to start Part I before, and I have to finish it now, but it’s just emotionally challenging.
● My goal(s) for this week
Finish Part I and start doing more work on Part II. I recently made a table of contents, so I know what goes where, and I decided Part II will span August 1922–August 1929. At least half of it is set in the Belleville section of the Twentieth Arrondissement, and then it returns to St. Petersburg.
● A favorite line from my story OR a word or phrase that sums up what I wrote/revised
[Grand Duke Mikhail, the Regent] “And that’s another thing. You and his sisters really need to stop calling him Baby. That’s a really embarrassing nickname for a fourteen-year-old.”
The Dowager Empress shook her head. “Perhaps captivity made you all go balmy, on top of how Baby was already coddled too much by his mother.”
“Who are you to talk about coddling when you’re still calling him Baby, like he’s two years old?” Natálya asked. “That’s a very big disconnect in thought and behavior.”
● The biggest challenge I faced this week (e.g., finding time to write, getting sick, having writer’s block, etc.)
It can be a little depressing and creepy to think about how so many of my characters were murdered in real life, and didn’t have these miraculous rescues and happy continued lives. There have been times I’ve been too overwhelmed by emotions to write, thinking about what happened to my protagonist in real life. There were tears pouring down my face as I wrote the freeverse poem which opens the book.
● Something I love about my WIP
Getting to do so much research into late Imperial Russia, after so many years of being immersed in Russian history from 1917 onwards. I certainly have studied a lot about the Ryurikovich and Romanov rulers, but I never really did a lot of research into the palaces, the cathedrals, and people outside of the Tsar’s immediate family.