For National Novel Writing Month 2012, I’m chronicling my novel-writing journey! Need more NaNo in your life? Follow along. (:
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10:21pm, Cali time: Well, here’s a twist. My protagonist, Singer, got fed up with me making such atypically slow progress on his story, and so took over the laptop and started making up a brand new story as he goes along. This will be interesting (in particular because, the instant Singer loses interest in whatever he’s writing, he drops it and takes the plot somewhere else), but I can’t complain: He threw down more words in the last couple hours than I have in the last couple days. So, okay – it’s all yours, Singer. May your writing efforts go more smoothly than mine have, since “So Super Dead”s end.
9:52pm, Cali time: Random ridiculousness abounds, in this story of Singer’s. But it could be that we’re about to see a turn for the better. He is attempting, at least, to come up with some plot points that he can build upon, rather than just throw in and out with thoughtless abandon. And he’s actually taken time, in the last few hundred words, to artistically describe some things, rather than just skip over everything on the basis that it doesn’t matter (at all, or just to him). It could be that he’s beginning to take his story more seriously. I’m all for that, so long as it doesn’t slow down his creative pace; 5,375 words of questionable merit today!
10:54pm, Cali time: Just when I think I know what’s up, Singer changes the game again. The other day he surprised me by allowing one of his fellow characters to narrate a chapter of the book (the plot didn’t get furthered much, that day, though I must say that the character’s turn at the wheel intrigued me). Now today, that same character has talked Singer into abandoning his runaway novel and trying instead to write his real story – y’know, the one I was trying to write when I got hijacked. So I’ve spent the last part of today’s writing time typing up Singer’s version of about half of what I’d already written of his story for myself. Not a super interesting undertaking (been here, done that, y’know), though at the pace he’s been going, we’ll end up in new story territory sometime tomorrow, and that’ll be… weird. I’m really unaccustomed to writing “first drafty” first drafts, which I know this will be, because Singer’s not the writer I am. But, whatever, this is what he’s writing now, and it’s sorta, kinda what I was supposed to be writing at this point, so we’ll call this a win-win, for now. Time may tell a different tale.
4:26pm, Cali time: Well, Singer and I are waving the white flag. I guess the experience of trying to write a novel on his own has caused him to view my efforts at crafting his story with a more empathetic eye. Neither of us want to spend the last days of November racing ahead on a project that nobody’s happy with, so he’s calling it quits on his authorial career, and I’ll take the time to do his novel right sometime down the road. I’m a bit disappointed that the back half of my NaNo has ended this way; it would have been so supremely satisfying to knock out two novels in a single month. But I can hardly look back on these last three-and-a-half weeks as a total failure. I’ve got “So Super Dead” to be pleased with, and have done myself proud with the number of words I’ve been able to squeeze out of me on an almost-daily basis. And even Singer’s partial novel isn’t a complete loss; some parts of it proved quite entertaining to write, and it’s given me some ideas for future stories. You can’t put a price on inspiration, I always say. (I’ve never said that. I may start saying it now, just for some measure of truth after the fact.) So I guess this is pretty much it for my National Novel Writing Month, 2012, with a full novel, some novels to come, and 79,806 words to show for it. And with the double-novel bar still un-reached, I guess that’ll be my challenge again next year. In the meantime, I’m ready for a few days off from noveling like a madperson. Anyone care to take bets on how long it takes for the old writing mania to crash my word vacation? (My money says I don’t make it through December.)