Chapter Break Down

Well… I didn’t reach my goal this past week. I wanted to reach 19978 words, and I only made it to 18,435. However, even though I didn’t get quite as much done as I was hoping, I did find myself at the desk more with my draft and notes actually trying to work on it.

Before this past week, I often only sat down once a week or so to look at my draft. This time though I worked on my draft on 3 separate occasions. I think having a goal I wanted to meet helped me get to the desk more, so this week I am going to set myself the same goal and we will see how it goes.

Current word count: 18,435.

Goal by Thursday August 8 at midnight: 21,435.

Getting to the desk more was good for me. Now I just need to try to do that a little every day and maybe find more time for each session.

And though I didn’t meet my goal, I feel like it was a productive week for my story. I had to rework some of the last passages I’d written because I wanted to change part of the plot just slightly. In doing so, I figured out why one of my main characters wants revenge.

Another concept I dwelled on a little this week was how my chapters are constructed. I got to thinking, “What’s the point?” I wonder why authors construct chapters the way they do. Do their editors make them do it? Or do they work it out for themselves while constructing the novel?

This is my first novel, and so I feel a little like my chapter breaks are arbitrary. I also got to thinking about the numerous ways to have chapters in a book length work. Some authors have parts and then chapters to break the larger parts down. Some have really short chapters (the newest Dan Brown book does this). And then some authors don’t even have any sort of break or chapters in an entire book (see the Discworld series, though these are relatively short books). How am I supposed to decide?

This is probably one of those things that comes from practice and trial and error. Any advice would be met with gratitude.

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