Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Whose Idea Was This, Anyhow?

Oh.  This writing a novel thing was my idea.  I guess I'll go stand in front of the mirror and point a finger at myself then.

You might have already guessed that this year's NaNoWriMo adventure isn't going very well.  I wouldn't even be updating about it right now except that it's ROW80 check-in day.  The most frustrating part is that it's entirely my fault that things aren't going well.

I started my prep strongly in late September.  I did lots of preliminary work for a couple of weeks, and then I got to the part where I was supposed to be doing in-depth outlining.  And I stalled. And I stayed stalled for the rest of October.  On top of that, I completely forgot my plan to do writing practice from prompts to get me back in the swing of doing creative fiction writing.

Now here I am at November 2.  A bit over 500 words under my belt and feeling stiff and uninspired. And worse yet incapable.  I haven't been writing fiction, or even random creative snippets, for a long time now, and yet I somehow expected myself to jump right into NaNo and start writing a novel.

So what to do?  I can't exactly drop out of NaNo.  I'm one of the municipal liaisons for my area.  I also don't want to do what I've done in the past and write such crap that it really isn't fixable without completely rewriting it.  What's the point in that?

I guess I'm going to spend some time over the next few days working with prompts but writing them using my current characters and settings.  Then I can possibly fit those bits into the novel, at least, plus maybe I'll get my words warmed up so I can get on with the novel writing.  I'm also going to keep working the system from Write Your Novel in 30 Days.  According to their calendar, I'm not actually behind!  I like that.  I'll keep it.

I'm also going to do some reading.  I've been busy the past six weeks or so and have read very little fiction.  I miss it, and possibly more important right now, I think reading good stories will help me remember how to write them.

That's all I have to report.  A slow start, a lot of whining, a vague plan that may or may not let me reach my goal and write 50,000 words in November and finish the novel by December 22.  But a maybe is better than a no way, right? 


Raymond Frazee said...

When you least expect it something is going to hit you . . . though it might be a Portland trolley, what do I know?

Just keep writing!

Anonymous said...

You NaNo folk are amazing - I'm sure that within a few days you'll find your groove. If nothing else, perhaps looking back over your prelim work and fleshing out a character or place that will be described later in the work and using it as a jumping off point might help - something that you are able to visualize, even if it falls at the end of the novel...I know for me sometimes that will give me a bump forward. Or rail at the computer if you are prone to that. I find sometimes that works exceptionally well sometimes. Good luck!

The Daring Novelist said...

One technique for dealing with NaNoWriMo, when you can't meet it's very specific goals is to say you're doing: NaNoWrongMo!

You're doing it, you're just officially doing it wrong. You know, intentionally.

Otherwise it sounds like you're approaching the the right way. (Prompts, exercises, whatever works.)

Julie Jordan Scott said...

Yes, a maybe is MUCH better than a no way! I appreciate your perseverence. Giving up on Day 2 just doesn't suit you!

Looking forward to hearing of your quickly rising word counts!

Paula - Buenos Aires said...

Go Kim! Start shuffling words around until the gather momentum on their own. :)

Ælfswyđ said...

* You wrote words +
* You have a plan =
* Your momentum will pick up.

Deep breath. :)

Anonymous said...

Time to do some pantsing. Take your characters, throw them together, then write what they do. They're still not doing anything? Have one of them get hit by a meteor or find a gold sepulcher or be visited by an alien (foreign or ET) or whatever. It doesn't have to make sense, it just has to *be*! ;) You can fix it later.

Good luck!

Em said...

I am sorry your NaNo hasn't got off to the best start but am glad you are not throwing your hands up in the air and giving up!

Take time to think about what you want to write and I hope the next few days go better for you.

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