Monday, October 27, 2014

NaNo is Almost Upon Us

Last night while I was chatting with the Kid about what she should be for Halloween, I made a joke that she should go as a writer pre-NaNo.  You know the look - a pencil in one hand, a harried look on the face, messy hair, comfy clothes. 

I don't know if she'll do it, but it got me thinking.  What would a writer the night before NaNo look like?  I know if I was doing it for the first time, I'd probably look like a basket case. 

Nowadays, I'm an old pro at NaNo.  For those of you not familiar with NaNo, it stands for National Novel Writing Month, and it's the month where some of the writing populace commit to writing 50K words in a month.  I've committed to it privately and publicly through the site, and sometimes committed to it even though it wasn't November, for the past seven years or so.  Given the right gumption, I can bang out 50K cogent words in a month.  Whether they ever go anywhere from there?  Well, sometimes they turn into a shopable novel.  Sometimes, they need a ton of work and I get distracted by a shiny idea elsewhere.  Sometimes, I just stop.

Last year, I just stopped.  My YA fantasy novel - a total break from anything I wrote before - moulders on my harddrive.  I don't know if I'll ever finish it.  Maybe someday.

This year I had planned to jump into NaNo will full abandon, writing a gritty urban fantasy that's been niggling at the back of my head.  But then I had a conversation with the Hubs, and he reminded me that I am ass deep in unfinished, semi-finished, and barely edited manuscripts, and perhaps I should finish one of those before I rush headlong into a new book. 

He's quite right, ya know.  So, I have the rest of this week to decide.  Work on something totally new or finish something I already started.  To that end, I've loaded a partially finished suspense I gave up on years ago when I lost faith in my ability to write suspense.  In the words of Monty Python, "I got better."  Unfortunately, after my faith got restored, I never went back to finish this damn book.  Now would be the perfect time - that is, if I think this manuscript is still viable or at least fixable.  We'll see. 

Who knows, I may still write the new idea next month.  Or I might go back and finish that quirky mystery I never finished.  Or I could just knuckle down and finish editing these things I never edited. 

Time will tell. 

Have you ever tried NaNo? 

6 comments:

jblynn said...

Hmmm….decisions, decisions. Personally I'd go for it and do it, if only to clear out the clutter of the piece that's taking up space in the back of your mind, but that's me.

B.E. Sanderson said...

They're all clutter up in there, JB. ;o)

Karyn Good said...

I've done NaNo once. In 2009. That book releases on November 7th. It was an...interesting experience. And honestly I'm not sure I want to repeat it. But never say never.

Have fun deciding which direction you're going to go in November! Sounds like you have lots of interesting choices!

Silver James said...

Holy cannoli! This is my NINTH year for NaNo! Yes. I'm participating. I have a book I need to start, finish, edit, and publish before the first of the year. NaNo is perfect. :)

B.E. Sanderson said...

Ooo, Karyn, and it's such a good ones, too. I'm so glad you decided to do NaNo that year! =o)

Wow, Silver! 9 years! You rock! I hope you get everything you need to get done finished by the end of the year - because whatever it is, I want to buy it. =o)

Aisyah Putri Setiawan said...


Banned complain !! Complaining only causes life and mind become more severe. Enjoy the rhythm of the problems faced. No matter ga life, not a problem not learn, so enjoy it :)

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