Ah, Nanowrimo. It’s that time of year again.
I wasn’t going to do Nano this year. After fifteen years of writing, I've realized that I don't do my best work when I try to hurry. In fact, every Nano novel I've written is a complete mess. In theory, I could go back and try to fashion a cohesive story out that mess. But I've tried and it always feels like I'm writing the novel all over again.
So this year, I’m going to try something different. First, I’m going to write at my own pace. We all know that the key to writing is to write. So I'll use Nano as an extra incentive to sit down and just do it. If I write twenty-five thousand decent words, I'll be happy.
Second, I’m doing a lot of pre-plotting. I’m not a pantster, but I wouldn’t call myself a plotter either. If I plot out a whole novel, I lose interest in writing it. If I jump in with both feet and no net, I soon find myself meandering all over the place and end up with a story that isn’t cohesive. So I usually start a new project with a general plot in mind and get to know my main character as I go. For Nano, I’m going to take that a step further. This week I’m going to spend some time learning a bit more about my protagonist. I want to know enough about her personality to get a sense of her direction without losing the mystery of what she will do when I place her in challenging situations. We’ll see how it goes.
Third, and most challenging, I’m going to confront my inner critic. She’s a loud mouth bitch. Sorry for the profanity, but it is what it is. She’s horrible and in the past I’ve tried to ignore her, reason with her and cry pitifully to get sympathy from her. She is never swayed. So this month, I’m going to yell right back. I’m going to fight her every step of the way. I might even make mistakes, do the things I know she hates, just to piss her off!
Because Nano is my month! It’s the month we writers take back our right to be crazy creative, crazy disorganized and just downright crazy!