WIPMarathon Check-In #6


January 11, 2014 by Ifeoma Dennis

Last Word Count + Chapter Count:

11 490 words and four chapters completed.


Current WC + CC (or SC):

22 118 words and seven chapters completed!! But that’s not all! My first act is complete too after endless weeks of giving me hell. 😀


WIP Issues this week:

I took a few days off to figure out how to write the last scene of the first act. There was this idea I had on my outline, and there was another idea popping its head up because of how the chapter was going, but at the end, I went with what was in my outline. I want to believe it’s less predictable. But I’d have to hear from my CPs first on that.


What I learnt this week in writing: 

Not to stifle myself. To write my own story. I’ve been wondering of late how my main character would be perceived if this book gets lucky enough to be published…she is not exactly a strong character, at least not physically, and even though most times she is strong mentally, she also has her weak times. She is gullible too. But it’s okay to write her. My MC need not be Katniss-like to make a point.

A couple of writers talked about this on Twitter this week, and I took it as an okay sign that I’m on the right path. 🙂


What distracted me this week while writing: 

Studying. Internet. I went out, cooked. etc. J


Last 200 words:

Not the last 200 words because I don’t want to spoil anything for my CPs…but one of the scenes I wrote this week.

“We can’t say for sure. Can we, Amicus?”

“But it’s not something normal,” Amicus told Pladdia. “Someone powerful enough to earn their respect must have spurred them to. Don’t quote me though. It’s only a speculation.”

“You forget too soon, my friend,” said Torvus, showing blinding gray teeth. “Don’t want to be quoted? Seal that pair of folds below your nose.”

“I’m not a quoter,” Pladdia blurted out, and Torvus burst into another round of creepy laughter.


How did everyone do this week? Hope you rocked it! ❤




21 thoughts on “WIPMarathon Check-In #6

  1. Jodi says:

    “My MC need not be Katniss-like to make a point.” That’s something I really needed to hear. I’ve had some insecurities over my protagonist (you and her have met before 😉 ) not being strong enough. Casing point: When Stryder corners Taz in the storage room at the animal shelter, Taz doesn’t immediately fight back. Instead, she freezes. And even when she finally DOES get the wherewithal to fight back, it’s a pitiful effort. I know this fact will bother some readers, but I can’t get myself to rewrite it. Taz simply doesn’t have that fighter’s spirit. Her strength is in her serenity to accept situations being thrown at her and to see glimmers of hope in the hopeless, not in her ability to physically fight back.

    Your line that really nailed it was in your comment to Suzanne: “…even non kick-ass characters can be heroes too. Waking up everyday in times of turmoil and plodding through is still heroic.” Oh my gosh, I love that. THAT’S the kind of heroes that your readers will actually identify with.

    As usual, your latest excerpt is full of intrigue! Glad to see how much you’re progressing Ify!

    • I love love Taz! And she is strong in her own way. Please don’t rewrite her character. Novels should reflect real people, and not all of us have fighter/assassin instincts. I don’t (hardyharhar). It would really be a boring world of one-sided literature if we only wrote a particular kind of female characters just to prove a point or fit in with what some readers want.
      And like Krystal said, if we love our characters, there would be people out there who would love them too.
      I, for one, am Taz’s numero uno fan! 😀

  2. You’re doing so awesome!! Keep it up! I love the snappy dialogue (made me laugh out loud) and you’re exactly right. If every protag was like Katniss, we’d have one boring world of books out there! What’s important are your MC’s unique points that make us fall in love, and I’m sure people will 🙂

    • Thanks so much, Cheyenne for this. I feel good about my MC and don’t think I’ll change her person for anything. 🙂 Interesting and different characters make the world go round. 😉

  3. amandashayne says:

    I know I already said it in my email, but just wanted to say again, congrats on finishing your first act and getting so much done this week! The rest of this month is crunch time for me, and you’re my inspiration! 🙂

  4. catyorkc says:

    I think it’s important to take those breaks to really think about how you want to proceed with a situation. And definitely take the time to let another idea bubble around. Good for you. I can’t wait to read the rest!

  5. Amy McNulty says:

    Perfect characters are boring to read about! I’m glad people write about all sorts of characters, even not admirable ones.

  6. Great excerpt, I love the dialogue!

    Sometimes I have the same problem with my outlines. I’ll have something planned out, and then when I actually get to that part it suddenly won’t seem natural and I’ll just have to come up with something else.

    I also worry a lot about how my MCs will be perceived if my books are ever published; I care a lot about how female characters in particular are portrayed in books, so I’d be a hypocrite if I didn’t represent women well in my own writing! Anyway, I don’t think female characters have to be physically “strong” in order to be good characters. In fact, I think there’s this unfortunate trend of authors thinking they can pass off female characters as good characters just by making them go around beating the crap out of everyone, while they don’t actually pay any attention to making the character have any clear motivations or personality. I think the more important thing is to make female characters *interesting* and not just on how “strong” they are, if that makes sense.

  7. Yael Itamar says:

    There are a lot of mixed messages out there about strong female characters. A lot of people interpret this to mean they should be “kick-ass.” Personally, I think a character needs more depth than that. If a character can fight but never makes any of her own decisions, it kind of defeats the purpose of making her strong. Mental and emotional strength are more important, IMHO, but they still have to be done right. I like smart characters…when they’re actually smart. (The trick with “smart” characters is not to TELL you’re readers they’re supposed to be smart. Let them decide for themselves.)

    But yeah, I’m not sure it’s realistic for a character to be strong all the time.

    As for weak female characters? A lot of people might give you flack for that, but I think it can work, depending on the story. Gullible is fine, as long as it’s to a believable degree (ie, she’s not walking straight into the brick that’s floating a foot in front her face). If she makes bad or unwise decisions, that’s fine, too, as long her decisions make sense. But what really bothers me are passive characters–if she doesn’t make a single important decision throughout the course of the story, then there’s no point in keeping her there.

  8. Congrats on all the progress! I don’t think it matters if your MC isn’t physically strong – it’s better to have a realistic and believable character who grows over the course of the story. 🙂

  9. I don’t mind characters that aren’t strong – especially not physically strong, so long as they are real and that they grow. I think the emphasis on strong characters is a little to much these days. Not everyone needs to be a hero.

    Congrats on your word count! 🙂

  10. krystal jane says:

    There are so many different kinds of characters out there. My MC isn’t the nicest person in the world. She’s not really nice at all, but if we like them, other people are bound to like them, too. ^_^

    Congratulations on breaking through a barrier and completing part one! Woot-woot! 😀

    The excerpt has a lot of personality! That’s always a good sign in my book when you can a take a random bit from the story and the characters still leap off the page. You’re doing some good work. ^_^

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"Dreams can get you through anything."

-Cat York


Topics I Blog About

Writing progress


First Draft:

93210 / 90000 words. 104% done!

Second Draft:

40482 / 90000 words. 45% done!

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