Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Sins of Our Fathers...

...is the tentative title of my new novel ("new"? Like I have any other kind?). For those of you who haven't heard, it's a Rumpelstiltskin retelling/continuation, and I will be writing it next month. Starting four days from now. Aaaah! I'm excited. This is for NaNoWriMo, short for National Novel Writing Month. The basic idea (again for those who haven't heard) is that all first drafts are $#@%, so one might as well get it over with as quickly as possible, especially since this seems to quell the internal editor who normally inhibits creativity and the finishing of first drafts. Not much good if you can't finish it... Another basic idea of NaNoWriMo is that novel writing should be publicly accepted as an enjoyable amateur activity, just like golf and other such recreations. No one questions people about playing golf just because they haven't made pro. I don't care quite as much about this basic idea, however, because I'm really really excited about the idea that I could edit edit edit edit and edit my novel and eventually find an agent for it and get it published. Of course, even then it would be similar to amateur writing in that I likely would make very very little money off it. That's ok... I suppose. It'd be a start. It'd be something. I would dance with joy.

And I'm telling you all this in part so that you will mock me mercilessly and without reprieve should I fail to finish said novel (or at least 50,000 words of said novel) before December 1st, 2008. This will give me helpful incentive next month. It's amazing how much running is like writing. It may be a very solitary sport, but you run faster with spectators.

I'm having encouraging progress as far as plotting out my novel (it's just the actual prose of the first draft that's limited to a month). There were days I put off sitting down at my computer and working on it, I think because I was afraid I couldn't make my ideas work. I was afraid I'd be writing and writing in November, then hit an insurmountable obstacle, realize I should have started it in a different manner along different lines, and have to rewrite it all. I was afraid that if I sat down and tried I'd have nothing to say. Realizing I was afraid of these things helped. They seem silly once vocalized. And sure enough, when I sit down the thoughts and questions just keep coming. I keep fairly free-form notes, just writing down all my ideas and questions. Then, the next day, I read my notes, jumping ahead and writing more whenever my notes prompt more ideas, then going back to where I left off to continue reading. Recently I haven't even been able to finish reading my notes in the time I've allotted myself, and I'm slowly solving problems and fleshing out the plot. There's still a ton I don't know, but I'm making progress. And I posted my questions on setting to a forum on the NaNoWriMo website, so maybe someone will help me there. Squeee!

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