I’ve decided to participate in National Novel Writing Month this November, despite my utterly failed previous attempts in other years. I always think this will be the year and cave under the pressure. I finished my werewolf book in a very Nano-like manner, though, writing in chunks nearly every day, so I know I have the capability of doing it.
I am working on a sapphic romantic psychological thriller set in Tokyo, Japan, among expats and the yakuza; writing women this time is an interesting departure, but the world needs more sapphic stories. I decided to do an alternative NaNoWriMo and not stress about word counts; only try to write every day. I am aiming for 40,000 words instead of 50,000.
Normally I end up posting to Twitter and that’s that, but with the implosion of that platform recently I’ve taken a break from tweeting, so I’m only updating Instagram and the NaNoWriMo website. I miss some of the community that way, but it’s also much less distracting.
The first week has been slow going. I thought I’d try something different and plot this one out, but every time I tried to prepare a plot in October I became frozen and couldn’t even jot down simple scene summaries in the various outlining methods I’ve experimented with. So I decided to return to my pantsing ways. Writing by the seat of my pants. I am not editing as I go this time though because I found I just cut a lot of that in revisions anyway, so hopefully I will save time by just pounding it all out in one big fever dream. My goal is continuously think of the action and increased conflict in the next few scenes. My weakness in pantsing has always been that I can write well, my prose and my characters are strong, but my storytelling isn’t as good.
So because I was taking a wild plunge into my story, starting out was like molasses. 500, 600 words here and there. I didn’t write yesterday at all because I couldn’t force myself to the keyboard and I don’t like to force writing sessions. And I had intended my weekend to be my big catch-up time.
Thus Sunday was the day I had left. Today I managed 3,662 words, bringing my total word count up to 6,679. I feel a renewed vigor and interest in my story. I feel like I finally hit upon the hook and why this story matters for me, and I find myself daydreaming the next scenes and sensing the same pull to the pages that enabled me to finish my other book in five months of drafting.
We’ll see what tomorrow brings, but I am fired up about this project now and anticipate pouring out more than 500 words with tomorrow’s session.