Monday, November 3, 2008

NaNo: Boarding Pass

I'll be the first to admit that I've been slacking off when it comes to my novel. There's just so much else to do. Yesterday, for example, I decided not to spend a few hours writing and, instead, to get out there for one last canvasing shit, confident that my natural ability to churn out word after word would allow me to make it up, in time.

I really shouldn't because I'm only going to get busier as the month goes by. An excuse will always be there not to write. And the longer I wait and the larger that gap grow, the more tempting they'll be. The election might be over, my midterms might have been finished, but there'll be that term paper to research or a deadline for a report at work. There'll always be something pulling on my time. No, the smart thing to do is to plug away, day after day. To grow that word count slowly but steadily.

At the moment, though, I don't have anything beyond the outline I put together the other day. I should say that I'm not expecting to make much noise this year round. I probably won't be joining the 400k club or, probably, even the 100k. Instead, with everything else I need to work on let alone all the other things that I'm going to become interested in, I'm going to be lucky to get done at all.

And, so, this year rather than build an elaborate plan and work the few months heading into this event to create an outline and block out every part of the story before I'd even began, I decided that I wasn't going to do much preparation. And, instead, that I was just going to more or less wing it. Go where the writing took me, in so many words, instead of worrying about trying to slot everything into a plan. So, I didn't write down anything about my novel until the month began. In the past few days, I've had a chance to jot down some notes and some character names and some other points of reference as I try to begin. Not so much an outline as a list of things that I don't want to forget when I'm in the middle of the heady rush of creation.

But I haven't even written a word of prose yet.

I really should have but real life keeps intruding.

Still, I'm not worried. Because I have an idea.

I've got a story that's laid out in my mind. The bits and pieces there, so vague and ill-defined but just waiting to be teased out. An idea so bright and so pure that it blazes searing tracks through my mind. When I'm bored, when I'm tired, I turn back to it and turn it over in my head and give it another look. I'm excited, in other words, because it's a story I want to tell.

I don't have a plan.

I don't have a word yet.

But I've got the urge to write.

And, really, what more do I need?

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