My completed first draft of Stars Fall Out is 234,000 words, 173 scenes, and 1125 pages, with a printing time of two hours.
I posted on Facebook that hole-punching would be my hobby for the foreseeable future, and it did take three days before I got the entire draft off the dining room table, punched and distributed between three binders.
I still have several excerpts I haven’t posted since I’ve neglected the blog in my single-minded drive to finish this thing. Here’s the first of them, a longer one from near the end:
Tirsan leaned against the counter too, arms folded across his chest, and once again considered me. “This is the most we’ve spoken in two days.” He studied his fingers against his upper arm. “Do you want to know where I went today? I went to talk to a man with some animals to sell. More gyadi, sheep. A dog. He’s moving north in a couple months, and he let me inspect them.
“Gods, they were nice animals. Even if you knew nothing about them, you could tell. Glossy coats. Well-tempered, meticulously groomed. Fresh hay. I could’ve paid him, gotten the whole process started, and been back to [some other farm chore.]
“But I didn’t pay him. I said, ‘Do you mind if I talk to my wife and come back in a bit?’ Then I left. Walked around for the better part of an hour. I came back and said you’d told me to make sure they didn’t have any history of health problems in the breeding lines.
“He reassured me that they were all set—he’s had them going a few generations back–and said something like, ‘Good looking out, that wife of yours.’
“And I agreed with him, and asked if he wouldn’t mind me running home a second time to talk to you again. He said, ‘No, no, not at all, though you probably should’ve just brought her with you and saved yourself the trouble.
“I laughed and said, ‘Yes, I probably should have. But she’s far too busy getting things ready around the house.’
“Then I did the whole walk again, came back, and told him we’d take the animals. So that’s underway now. I thanked him and said we’d be in touch.
“And then, Tyatavar, I look the long way around home, as if I hadn’t walked enough miles already, because the whole thing bothered me so much. Why did I make it take two hours longer than it had to? Why did I lie about talking to you? Why did I say you had all those questions, when I knew within minutes I’d take the animals?”