Brainstorming

November is almost here, which means National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo. For the past six years I have driven myself crazy trying to write 50,000 words in 30 days because it’s the only time of year that I actually devote myself to finishing that novel I’m going to write someday. Some years I look forward to November, spend weeks outlining and developing characters, and log into the forums the first day they re-open in October so I can plot and plan with all the other literary fanatics. Some years I completely forget until most of the way through October, and then I think “Oh my, I’ve got a week to figure out what I want to write! Whatever, I’ll just wing it this year!” Never have I actually made the word count goal, and usually I’ve burnt out by day 14. Doesn’t matter because those two weeks of writing madness are still quite fun and I have produced good work that, even if it still languishes unfinished, has provided foundation for writing that later followed.

So this year is one of the late-start years, I don’t have an outline or a real plan, though I have jotted down a few notes. I’m writing in the “Rebel” category because most of the story I have to tell is based on real life, though I will be fictionalizing elements of it. I’m also not waiting until November to start, I’m thinking of starting this evening, although now that I’m deciding to take the plunge, the old urge to procrastinate is kicking in and I suddenly feel compelled to tackle the mountain of dirty dishes downstairs.

But I also need a new yarny project. Knitters and crocheters tend to have weird little superstitions (like the Sweater Curse), and I feel like I need a brand new project that I cast on as I start writing, and keep working on throughout November. I’ve always had knitting that I was working on in previous years, but never a project that I started just to work on during NaNo, and I think having a dedicated project will have the benefit of giving me something to do when I get writer’s block but it will still keep me focused because it’s the official NaNo project. But I also feel a little weird about starting something brand new when I have so many other projects in progress that need to get finished up. I could do a WIP busting effort while I write; that has the added incentive that I will finish out November with a lot to show for it, in both yarn and writing. Hmm, definitely something to ponder . . .

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