Have I Written Today?

My name is Matthias. I am currently writing a book series called ‘Battle Universe’ that is taking me way too long because I am the CEO of a company, covid19, I’m a slow writer, inferiority complex, imposter syndrome, once someone said one of the things I made sucks so I have deep creative scars that linger and haunt me to this day, among a host of other very bad reasons. Feel free to follow the slow process of this sci-fi fantasy series that may seriously suck really hard. Oh yeah, It’s also not a comedy book, so don’t expect that.

Below you’ll see a lot of redacted text that looks like REDACTED. That is to protect you from spoilers, though you may still see one occasionally so read at your own risk. Maybe later toward the beta reading stage I will release redacted text for those who are in the beta.

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Stage: Writing Book 1 @ ACT 2B /// Progress: 125,000 words/537 pgs

Daily Log

  • 10.07.FR

    Hello everyone! You may notice I havent written in a while! That is due to a shift in priorities at Hi5 studios. The corona virus has de-stabilized us and were working to stabilize our company this quarter (next three months). After that, I will re-assess and hopefully resume my writing journey! Love you all!

  • 09.06.MO
    – Write 1k Words Wrote more of the same scene. My scenes are kind of long and they are filled with a lot of dialogue but I do believe its necessary based on the mystery afoot. It’s an enormous mystery with so many questions that need to be answered along the way. I honestly wonder if they are long enough sometimes to make sure readers aren’t too much in the dark.
    Listen to a master class yesterday that might help with the idea of longer scenes. Dan Brown talked about the nature of location and how it can do the ‘heavy lifting’. In other words a scene in the right place adds tension that wouldn’t be there otherwise, something for me to think about to keep the scenes moving that are more ‘talking heads’.
  • 08.06.MO
    – Write 1k Words Had fun writing this morning. I enjoy writing the sequel reaction scenes where characters converse about clues. Something cozy about it. There are a healthy amount of those moments in this book, possibly too many.
  • 06.06.SA
    – Write 1k Words Bit of a tough week writing. Doing my best to avoid burnout coming back to work, so many emotions in the world what with the movement and all, and honestly a sleep schedule that needs to be rectified. Trying to get back on track here without burning out. Back in it today.
  • 03.06.TU
    – Write 500 Words
    • Writing next reaction scene, after this next reaction scene I am starting ACT 2B! Excited to be pushing into the more proactive steps for the hero.
  • 01.06.MO

    – Write 1k Words

  • 31.05.SU

    – Write 1k Words

  • 29.05.FR

    – Write 1k Words

  • 28.05.TH
    – Write 1k Words
    • Finished that difficult scene, onto the next!
    • This next scene is action packed with conflict so It is going to be a joy to write.
    • Also introducing new characters!
  • 25.05.TU

    * Write 1k words

    • Still writing the midpoint scene, couple more sessions to finish it up.
  • 23.05.SA
    * Write 1k words
    • Still writing the midpoint scene, this is taking forever.
  • 21.05.TH

    * Brainstorm New Series Ideas

    • Excited! Brainstormed a lot of the main points for the new series, I believe I also have a name to tease a bit ‘Higher Realm Hunters’!
    • Created a Nolt board (will only be up for 9 days) to help collect some ideas for the artifacts the hunters are seeking! Click below, no login needed!
    View Board, submit, and vote!https://cdn.nolt.io/widgets.js
  • 20.05.WE
    * Write 1k Words
  • 19.05.TU
    * Write 1k Words * Finish sketching complicated midpoint sceneNext Steps
    • Write the midpoint scene.
    • Map out basics of REDACTED scene! Excited for this one.
  • 18.05.MO
    * Continue Mapping Midpoint sceneNext Steps
    • Continue midpoint scene mapping, its a big scene ok.
  • 17.05.SU

    * Map out midpoint scene

    Next Steps

    * Continue to map out scene

  • 15.05.FR
    * Two Minute Rule * Write 1k Words * Finish Chant Revelation Scene Had some great ideas for the writing series I am planning to undertake. Story ideas, themes, etc. My brain doesn’t want to start writing though from the ‘pantser’ strategy. I feel like my work loses meaning when there isn’t at least some preliminary direction to where I am headed. I don’t think I need to plan out every little beat, as that takes the fun out of it. I believe there should be a healthy mix of planning and writing off the cuff. Direction and exploration, thinking and feeling. One should not dominate the other. So in order to do that, there needs to be a relatively simple planning phase where I map out at least the climax and midpoint and maybe some other major beats like plot and pinch. I can find my way in realtime after that. Onto writing now! For clarity, when I set a goal of writing 1k words, any words I write across my manuscript or notes are counted. This is to reduce the emotional burden I feel when figuring out some complex story problems that have to be figured out before I proceed in the manuscript. As long as I am writing, I count it. I only write notes though when I’m blocked in the manuscript. However, if I have extra time (usually I only have an hour a day) I will get to the 1k words goal in the manuscript. To do this have have two word counters, one that lives in the menu bar of the Mac that tracks all words across my Mac, the other in Scrivenr that only tracks the manuscript. I tend to have three documents open while writing. Front and center, the manuscript, to the left, this log, and to the right my notes. The log and notes each serve a purpose, dump out the problems, solve them, and get back into the manuscript. The log lets me keep writing but get out the distractions, the notes allow me to keep writing by solving dialogue or sequential issues of pacing. The less I judge myself for not writing in the manuscript, the more I actually get written in the manuscript. ➤ Next Steps
    • Rylen uncovers REDACTED
    • It keeps calling, he realizes his REDACTED
    • Rylen attaches it, and REDACTED
    • Resume from notes
  • 14.05.TH
    * 2 Minute Rule * Write 1k Words * Start writing next scene with Jax
    • Writing in the morning is a bit tough because my brain wants to go into work mode. But I also know myself enough to know that if I wait until the evening there might be so many things to tackle that I tell myself writing isn’t a priority. The issue is that can never be true unless there is something truly urgent. There is rarely something truly urgent that cannot wait, but more importantly the feeling that something is truly urgent that distracts. Then the need to solve that problem to dispel the negative energy. I want to get in the habit of moving toward that discomfort of working on something important even when I feel other things are urgent. This will help me grow in my ability to sit with pain and be uncomfortable. The trick is not judging myself when I fail.
    • As far as story goes, had some thoughts last night about where I can take this next scene. Browsing instagram last night got some inspiration reading various accounts centered around poetry. Something I definitely want my first pass over my manuscript to encompass. I want the writing to be a bit more poetic. Realism is good and all, but I live in reality, I read to escape it. On with it!
    Next Steps
    • Finish scene as quick as possible to talk about the chant
    • Move onto him sleeping and being woken up by REDACTED.
    • Then REDACTED.
  • 13.05.WE
    * Organize Story Notes * Brainstorm three short stories * Start mapping beats
    • No need to do the two minute rule as my brain is yearning to get into the story ideas I have.
    • It’s unreal how many notes I have. I could spend an entire work week attempting to sort my notes. I won’t get that crazy with it, but wow.
    • Brainstormed some short story ideas.
    • The reason I am brainstorming short story ideas is because I want to write a short story in the Battle Universe that I can release now, so I can start to bring people into this universe I am creative. It is a bit lonely creative it all on my own right now. My thoughts is that If I commit one day out of the 6 days I write a week, then I should be able to (soon) start writing about 1k words per week in this universe that I can release soon.
    • The idea is to release it in 1k word increments with some amazing art from Lovans, an amazing Hi5 artist.
    • This way I am still fully committed to my bigger story, and I can bring people along in the process in a way thats more immersive than this log, or other ‘teasers’ for years before I release the book.
    Next Steps
    • Next Session for mini series will include committing to a story and then mapping it out.
    • Next session (tomorrow) for my main story is to continue from 12.05.TU
  • 12.05.TU

    Latest count: 120,074 words – 509 pages

    * Write 1k Words

    * Continue reaction sequel

    * Two Minute Technique

    • The two minute rule by Merlin Mann is an idea that before you get to work you write whatever is on your mind for two minutes straight to get into the process of writing. Doesn’t matter what you write so long as you keep writing for two minutes. I would normally spare you of this stream of consciousness in this log as it will most likely be extremely redundant and insipid, but that’s the natural of a daily log, is it not?
    • Right now getting caught a bit with distraction and I want to refocus my attention. The past couple days since I have had some extra time to work my process of starting up is pretty slow. I also weight lifted (leg day) so I’m a bit foggy as is right now. My brain has latched onto perfecting my productivity system instead of doing actual work (Actual work is difficult), pretending to work is fun. Either way, here I am, starting up, getting the process flow.
    • Right now working on the rest of the sequel scene to the midpoint battle. The next scene I’m worried about cramming. My ‘sequel’ scenes, or reaction scenes are always instantly crammed with dialogue to cover revelations, information, and necessary progression of character motivated plot. Seems to be a bit difficult to get all the points out in a succinct way, but Ill worry more about that in the edit. My ‘scene’ scene (action scene [Got to love Dwight Swain’s naming logic]) before this sequel was 5k words. So under 5k for the sequel will set a nice quick moving pace. Anything over 5k might drag the story a bit. Luckily the following action scene is exciting.
    • Create Writing Routine as follows
      • Create Log
      • Review yesterdays writing.
      • Set 3 minute timer
      • Brain dump for 3 minute
      • Set 1 hour timer.
      • Write
      • Finish Log.
      • Upload log.

    Next Steps

    • Pilot says he can’t move forward because REDACTED
    • They get out, and walk through the REDACTED
    • Set up and beat map return to Jax scene
    • Create Writing routine in ‘Things’
  • 11.05.MO
    * Write 1k Words * Continue Battle conclusion scene
    • Listened to Tron soundtrack by Daft Punk to get into the zone.
    • Bit of a slow start today, but got it done.
    Next Steps
    • Continue reaction sequel to battle scene.
  • 10.05.SU
    * Write 500 words (Wrote 839) * Organize End of battle scene
    • Amanda left to go for an outing, kids are asleep. Writing feels fun right now. Wouldn’t write today if it didn’t (sabbath), and wouldn’t write if she was home (mothers day).
    • Exciting to be working on death/rebirth scene (midpoint), this kind of conflict is always bigger and much more fun to write. ‘This kind of conflict’ meaning conflict in which you have large and much much more noticeable shifts in perspective for the key character. A bit difficult to sustain a cohesive and believable build up to such points as the midpoint and climax. I do wonder if this point may overshadow the climax or possibly that other points may overshadow these, but I will never know until I get some beta readers. Excited for that phase.
    • Probably overwrote. Not too worried about it. I am writing an ‘epic’. Of course I’m writing it here so I must a least be a little worried about it. Possibly worried about cutting things in the edit. But then again I don’t have any aesthetic scenes, everything is purely functional, at least with my current structure. It’s a given then why I have the fear of cutting what is necessary. I think the bigger more real fear is that I am not being as effective or efficient with how said points flow. In other words, there could be a better way to get across the information in a more succinct way. Doing my best to not limit my thinking in this stage though. Would rather process the thoughts here in this log than be a slave to them in my manuscript.
    Next Steps
    • Rylen runs to the REDACTED to see REDACTED.
    • There are heavy thoughts during the run.
    • Continue with existing outline.
  • 09.05.SA

    * Write 1K Words

    – 117,296 Words
    – 1 hour session

    * Finish REDACTED Battle

    • Playing Spotify cinematic playlist to help bring about intensity in my thoughts.
    • Writing intense scene, filled with anger. Noticing a lot of it build up inside me. Honestly need to hit something right now to release it, but Im going to use it instead.

    Next Steps

    • Rylen has a bit of a panic attack.
    • When he comes to he hears REDACTED
    • His heart sinks for REDACTED
    • Goes back into the greenroom
  • 06.05.WE

    * Write 1k Words

    Next Steps

    • Describe look of arena
    • Rylen uses his anger and speed to REDACTED
    • Knocks REDACTED
  • 05.05.TU

    * Write 1k words

    * Continue REDACTED battle scene

    Next Steps

    • Ranger shoots something and REDACTED.
    • He shoots not stopping, unaware the arena is changing.
    • Gets REDACTED
    • Just REDACTEDleft.
  • 01.05.FR

    * Write 2k words

    Next Steps

    • Drift reaches up, but REDACTED
    • Rylen and Kyra fight REDACTED
    • Kyra gets REDACTED
    • Guardian REDACTED
    • Arena change is classic arena with an empty center for Rylen and REDACTED
  • 30.04.TH
    * Write 1.5k Words

    Next Steps

    • Begin with the battle, Rylen can’t keep them in REDACTED
    • How does he defeat the other team. He needs to REDACTED, and another with get REDACTED by the arena.
  • 29.04.WE

    * Finish scene with Rylen and his new spell

    * Write 1k words.

    Next Steps

    • Rylen doesn’t have much luck but just a couple clues like warm ground, anger starting to swell but he is too fearful and contains it.
    • Map out beats of REDACTED
    • Then he gets angry at REDACTED it with ease in battle.
  • 28.04.TU
    • Finish Writing the REDACTED scene
    • Write 2k words

    Next Steps

    • Rylen annoyed REDACTED is empty
    • Finds its not and REDACTED
      • Rylen wakes up from a REDACTED
    • He follows it to the REDACTED
    • Reveals the same REDACTED
    • He goes outside to REDACTED, against his judgement (staying away, getting tired)
    • Battle comes, he REDACTED
    • The REDACTED saves him from REDACTED because he’s REDACTED.
  • 27.04.MO

    Set Up Next Major Scene Beats
    Write 2000 Words
    – Should they prep in some type of locker room and come to the match in regular clothes? Why do they prep at home and travel in battle gear?
    – Wrote the REDACTED. Added X-Spells and how a torch works.

    Next Steps

    • Finish REDACTED
    • Work on Defining main beats for next scene (learning spell)
    • Map out battle with REDACTED in more detailed structure.
  • 26.04.SU

    Next Steps

    • They REDACTED because Rylens head isn’t in the game
    • Drift says to keep is head out of the clouds and in battle instead of the raeth (hes forgetting its power)
    • Rylen tries to REDACTEDjust move the scene)
    • the REDACTED so he turns to the REDACTED in the last minute
    • special scene with the REDACTED somehow signifying the REDACTED
  • 23.04.TH
    • Need to fix first half of second act
      • They need to be searching and discovering clues
      • REDACTED to be making more noise out in the galaxy
        • Privately looking (what does this mean?)
        • Stumbling! Not privately looking, active search relegated to second half after midpoint.
    • Wrote 2k Words
  • 22.04.WE
    • 2k words
  • 21.04.TU
    • Cont’ reaction scene after library
    • Wrote Next battle
    • 2k Words
  • 20.04.MO
    • Wrote Battle Reaction
    • Wrote library scene
    • 2k Words
  • 19.04.SU
    • Wrote 2k
  • 18.04.SA
    • Wrote 2k
  • 17.04.FR
    • Formatting scene
    • Structuring next scene

    Next Steps

    • Rylen REDACTED, gives him a moment to explain his plan to his team
    • Rylen faces REDACTED
    • Line swings back and forth
  • 16.04.TH
    • Working on next battle
  • 15.04.WE
    • Buying of REDACTED
    • Wrote 1k words

    ➤ Next steps

    • Next battle with REDACTED
  • 14.04.TU
    • Finished REDACTED scene
    • Started gear up scene

    Next steps

    • Look at armor
    • only afford REDACTED
    • Plan their strategy in pub
    • Wrote 1k words
  • 13.04.MO

    Took a long break from writing. Last session was two weeks ago. Quarantine has been challenging at work and has consumed a bit more attention that I suspected it would. Been a bit obsessive about problem solving and trying to figure out how to keep it all sustainable.

    • Starting a new goal to have 60k more words written by the 15th of May. That’s the date we should be getting back to work at the studio.
    • Added it to my chalk board
    • Wrote 2k words today

    ➤ Start setting up scene/sequel for armor journey

  • 27.03.FR
    • Testing software for viz data
    • Prep next chapter
  • 24.03.TU
    • Continuing quest reaction scene
  • 23.03.MO

    Writing Sequel
    Next Steps

    • Find place to put the REDACTED
      • He reaches in and feels REDACTED
      • Dumps out on table in front of Jax
  • 22.03.SU

    Sequel scene to disaster scene / Quest

    • Created battle plot to map out what battles we see and which ones we don’t.
    • Started mapping out sequel

    ➤ Start sketching ‘Gearing Up’

  • 21.03.SA
    • Continuing Run From REDACTED
      ➤ Arrive at home.
      • Cut to back at Jax
      • Drift REDACTED
      • They talk on the REDACTED
      • Rylen doesnt even have the courage to REDACTED
      • Import next beat notes from Airtable
  • 19.03.TH
    • Continuing the ‘attack’
      • They run REDACTED.
      • Find Kyra REDACTED
      • Almost leave
      • Rylen says to wait and leads them back to REDACTED.
  • 12.03.TH
    • Wrote Kyra leaves

    Next Steps

    • Rylen protects REDACTED
      • Kyra finds her own way
        • Hopping out of reach
      • REDACTED the bottom door.
        • When they’re back, Rylen is curious REDACTED.
  • 11.03.WE
    • Continuing Quest
    • Ending towards the REDACTED.

    Next Steps

    • Kyra recognizing REDACTED.
      • How didn’t she see this before?
      • Books
      • She points out the triangle in the center and holds up REDACTED.
      • A noise! REDACTED!
      • Kyra moves away to a different room to explore more.
  • 10.03.TU
    • Continuing Quest
  • 09.03.MO
    • Writing Quest

    ➤ Cont R&D getting mad at J and then suspecting him of REDACTED. How does he know so much? REDACTED

  • 28.02.FR
    • Packed day so only transferred some beats.
    • Started setting up dynalist to capture beats
    • Set up formatting

    ➤ Continue previous next step

  • 27.02.TH
    • Outlined REDACTED
    • Decided to outline on dynalist and not on paper, too difficult and slow.
    • Set up binder for tracking and reference

    ➤ Import outline to dynalist and finish outlining sketch

  • 26.02.WE
    • No writing today.
    • Printed and laminated tools/guides such as alternatives for ‘said’ to carry around in BU01
  • 25.02.TU
    • Wrote 3 pages
      ➤ ‘Oh Great’ Rylen thinks.
      • Goes off to worry.
      • Before he heads off though, address the outstanding beats.
  • 24.02.MO
    • Wrote 2.5 pages today.

    ➤ Jax tells him the REDACTED is on the other side of the mountain.

    • Drift wants to know of the danger involved.
    • Jax tells him to REDACTED

  • 21.02.FR


    • Wrote 4 pages today
      ➤ Drift Gains Respect/Awe for Rylen
      • REDACTED
      • Team Starts to trust one another at this point
      • Rylen thinks REDACTED
  • 20.02.TH
    • Started writing again finally
    • Got over fear of starting. I notice that happens a lot more when I skip days.
  • 19.02.WE
    • Started writing in a new notebook.
    • Difficult start today, worried how to start, getting in my head a bit.
    • Decided to start by writing chapter I am currently working on.
    • Still unsure this process will yield similar results because writing by hand is a bit more time consuming.
  • 14.02.FR

    Working on airtable

    • Organized character column with attributes
  • 11.02.TU


    Working on Airtable
    – Add header tags inside headers
    – Add ‘Notes’ or ‘Beats’ tag to header.

    Note Organization

    Text Type Use
    Notes Explanation/Exposition/Information
    Beat An event we see
    Line Written line in story
    Lore Beat we don’t ever ‘see’

    How to Tag

    • Note type
    • Note Place
    • Subject
    • Plot Thread
    • Character


    Tool Use
    Airtable World Building / Lore / Story Grid
    Dynalist Event notes
    Scrivener Manuscript / Sketches

    ➤ Organize airtable with world building and export notes

  • 10.02.MO
    • Imported writing ntoes
    • Imported desk notes
  • 07.02.FR
    • Added tags to headers
    • Ensure beats have check boxes to mark off
    • Create rules
    • Organize Inbox and import
      ➤ Import desk Notes + Tags
  • 06.02.TH
    • Remember to write process for writing each chapter/act
      • Go through General Notes.
      • Go through ACT notes.
      • Go through plot point notes.
      • Go through beats.
      • Import all new beats
        ➤ Add tags to header
        ➤ Import Raeth Notes
        ➤ Import Christian Themes
        ➤ Import Desk notes
  • 05.02.WE

    Continuing organization of existing beats. This is a chore and more work than I anticipated but worth it in the long haul because Im not really writing ‘just one book’.

    • In search you dont have to tag everything you can just search the word if needed. Only tag if the word isnt inherent.
    • Finished Org existing notes.
      ➤ Import and organize new dynalist beats (BUN02)
  • 03.02.MO
    • Forgot to add beat structure to other books.
      • Finished
    • Need identifier tags for quick sorting of existing beats
      • Book 1, ACT 2, Pinch 1 = B1A2PI1
    • Set all Tags for series
      • Finished B1
        ➤ Organize writing beats notes in general
        ➤ Add identifier to headers to quickly transfer notes and events
  • 01.02.SA
    • Organizing Acts in Airtable Base
    • Reorganizing existing beats in Dynalist.
    • Why aren’t tags inherited by header in Dynalist?
    • Always store tags in notes because there is an option to hide them when display gets too busy.
      ➤ From inciting incident
  • 12.02.WE
    • Import word building notes
    • Importing dynalist #raeth notes to airtable
      ➤ Organize airtable columns w/ inbox column info