I tried… negative word count.

This is an odd one for me. Basically, I’ve switched to watching almost exclusively Korean shows on Netflix. I like them because they present new ways of looking at things, but still retain a semblance of plot and character growth.

They have a lot of fantasy and supernatural tales, and aren’t afraid to dabble in sophomoric humor, so you can further see the appeal to me. I started watching a new one last night involving a fantastic creature trying to become human. At one point he said, “I don’t think like humans.”

This stuck with me. When we write, even our aliens and fantastic creatures have to be presented for human readers. We have to put things in their language. However, this could be a relatively cool plot point in itself.

I intended to work on my Space Opera this morning, but I’m dwelling on the possibilities for characters who aren’t human. I have Percy the Space Chimp and his human girlfriend specifically in mind.

The natural flow of a trilogy is introduction to the world and environment along with some characters and an introduction to the struggle in book one. This one is already written.

Book two is where the bottom falls out. The enemy has some victories, and things start to fall apart for the heroes. This is what I will be working on this year.

My focus is book two, but to finish the thought, book three involves a regrouping with little hope of success, and even a possible suicide mission, that manages to overcome the great evil. For an example reflect upon the original Star Wars Trilogy.

Here I am in book two. Percy is only part human, and I have a perfect alien character to lead him into the idea of not thinking like a human. This can cause problems in his relationship, his loyalty to the cause, and his leadership ability.

What I wound up doing was deleting about 500 words from this project, because I like the idea of where this new thought could take me. This means I need to spend some time in the daydreaming phase, and it’s perfectly okay here. It’s Sunday, and not like I’m squandering my best writing opportunities away. Maybe by next week, I can get this story really moving.

Leave me some comments. Do you watch any K-dramas? What do you think about classic trilogies? Are you a fan of “pull my finger” comedy? Have you ever had a negative word count day?



Filed under Writing

38 responses to “I tried… negative word count.

  1. I don’t watch K-dramas, so there isn’t a lot I can say about them. I like trilogies and wrote one. I thought your capture of the three phases of a trilogy was on point. I’m not fond of finger-pulling humor, but sometimes, I can’t keep from laughing. Never had a negative count day. Have had many zero days. I do understand how it could happen though

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  2. On a re-read for Editing/compiling I lose scenes, combine ideas, rake the leaves off the point. Also, when a new direction comes out of left field I call a cast meeting. However, it is usually my characters who come back from the weeds and shake it off. They’ll be the first to tell me “oh please. Really? Start here and delete that shit. What were you thinking? Whatever it was, don’t.” We even have K broadcast running their take on traditional tropes, generally the princess and the bandit bits with a lot of tongue and cheek facial expressions. Disney with an Asian accent and pull my finger slapstick. I don’t do syfi or fantasy but they knock out the costume com/dramas with a nod nod wink wink.

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  3. Been a long time since I’ve done a negative word count. Guess it happens when an idea takes an unexpected turn and you have to fix things. Haven’t watched any Korean shows as far as I know. I’ve watched some Japanese and Chinese movies with either dubbing or subtitles. Some of them have been comedies if you count ‘Kung Fu Hustle’ and ‘Shaolin Soccer’.

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  4. We have watched anime for decades, which is Japanese, and because of that also seem to pick up some Chinese animated shows, too. Definitely a different mind set and pacing.

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  5. I’ve gotten into Japanese anime as well. I wanted to try K-dramas but can’t find them on the streaming I use. I love the anime for its strong supernatural and character tackling.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. If it makes the story better, I don’t mind backtracking. Sometimes, I start out and then a better idea comes along. Who doesn’t want the better idea? Percy had better be careful or he’s going to be led astray. Sounds like fun!

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  7. Victoria Zigler

    Even if it was a negative word count day, it sounds like your musings helped you get one step closer to knowing where the story is going, and sometimes that counts for more than any kind of word count. And, yes, I’ve had negative word count days in the past.

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  8. Pingback: Have Our Writing Lives Expanded from the Narrow Genres There Used to be for the Better? by Traci Kenworth – Where Genres Collide Traci Kenworth YA Author

  9. I don’t watch K-dramas. When the lips don’t match, it bothers me. Can’t say I’ve ever had a negative word count. Even while editing, I’m rewriting. But I wouldn’t worry about it. You’ve got a firm handle on the story, is all.

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  10. I’ve deleted around 40,000 words and started over. Does that count as a negative word day?

    Don’t feel bad about your negative word count. It sounds like it has you moving in the right direction.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I don’t watch much television, Craig. No time. But I like hearing about how it makes you think about your stories and characters. Progress is progress even with a negative word count. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  12. I agree with Diana. You’re making progress.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. D.L. Finn, Author

    I haven’t seen a k-drama, Craig. I’ve had delete and start over days, but they always lead to a better story. Anything that makes me laugh is good!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I’m not overly fond of humans, as a species, myself. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  15. No, I haven’t been watching any Korean dramas. I don’t hesitate to watch foreign films on our once-a-week movie night, though. Oh yes, negative word count days are a thing for me! I’m a fan of pull-my-finger humor, redneck humor, frat boy humor, dad jokes, slapstick… basically anything as long as it’s not cruel.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Hi Craig, I can’t say I’ve ever had a negative word count day but I don’t write very quickly when it’s historical fiction. I keep having to stop to check things. I write quicker if its fantasy.

    Liked by 1 person

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