My first week of NaNoWriMo was kind of fun. I had a good time sitting down to write everyday. The second week has been a little more up and down, and I’ve been asking myself two questions: (1)Was I nuts? (2) Why on earth did I tell everyone I know that I was trying this?
The answer to the second question is easy–I told everyone I know so I’d be less likely to give up and quit halfway through. And now that I’m here at the halfway point, the thought of quitting has crossed my mind. To be honest, the thought has done more than cross my mind–it’s set up permanent residence there. So here’s the moment of truth: do I keep NaNoing or stop NaNoing?
To help me decide, I completed a quick retrospective and divided the last two weeks into good news and bad news.
Good News: At the halfway point, I’ve written just over 25,000 words, which means I’m right on target to finish by November 30. Yay me!
Bad News: I really intended to be well over 25k at this point since I’m leaving tomorrow to spend Thanksgiving with my family and help take care of my preschool niece and nephew while their parents are out-of-town. I’m going out on a limb here and predicting that I’ll have much less time to write the last two weeks in November than I did the first two.
Good News: Throwing a couple of dead bodies into the story turned out to be a good thing. That scene really livened things up. (See what I did there? Dead bodies=livened up? I’m all about the irony. Also, that’s the kind of writing gem I throw out all the time now.)
Bad News: I
lied wrote fiction when I said I throw out writing gems all the time now. I just throw out words. Quantity over quality!
Good News: At one point yesterday morning, I suddenly felt like I might actually be writing something interesting. My characters’ dialogue sounded natural, the plot was advancing, and I even had a bit of foreshadowing!
Bad News: As I continued writing yesterday morning, I realized that my “foreshadowing” was for a scene that I’d already written several chapters earlier, and that I’d completely lost track of what was going on in my novel.
Good News: Kim Harrison, one of my favorite writers, is also participating in NaNo this year, and has been blogging about her own writing process throughout the month. It’s been really helpful, especially yesterday when her blog was all about realizing her plot had evaporated and how she would go about fixing it. That gave me a little kick to get back to work and figure out how to fix my own plot.
Bad News: I don’t know how to fix my own plot.
But I want to. And that, I guess, means I’m going to keep NaNoing. I may or may not hit 50k words, and I may or may not figure out what to do with my plot issues, but I’ll keep trying.
Good News: I can always kill off some more characters.