Friday, October 29, 2010
NA NO WRI MO
I avoided it for weeks, thought of a million reasons why it wasn't for me, then BAM! I was caught. NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) for those who have somehow avoided knowledge of this event, starts on Monday November 1st.
Pen, over at The Dragon's Pen, is also joining the challenge with a cool steam punk YA novel. And fellow Mad Scribbler (that's our critique group) Chris is taking part as well.
So what is it I'm writing and where am I with Blackbird?
If you've been regularly reading this blog then you will know that for the past months I have been scratching together the final chapters of my first novel. And to be honest I feel like I have been going around in circles. I have made lots of progress, but the end has always been just out of grasp. To remedy this dilly dallying I decided to put the book aside until the end of November.
Isn't it amazing what a bit of space can do? Not two days after making this decision, a huge hurdle dissolved in front of me. I realised several chapters at the end of Blackbird had to go. They were first written when Blackbird and the next book were being written as one, but they don't fit what is now the end of the book. Removing them makes the ending much stronger. Huge sighs of relief!!! The mountain of work before me has shrunk to a mole hill.
This week I have been working on the structure and layout. The characters and setting are of course well known to me. What I am looking forward to is writing it chronologically. Blackbird was written in no order at all and I had no firm idea of the plot. I just had these people and this place I had to write about. Now, with three years experience under my belt, I have story arcs, a storyboard covered in little yellow post-its, and a very definite idea of where it's going and where it will end.
Quite by chance there are 29 post-its, each with an event, which means I can attack one for each day in November and have one whole day up my sleeve. That's the plan anyway. Although it's a sequel, I'm looking forward to the freshness of a new story and a new way of approaching it. I'll keep you updated with my progress.