July’s Camp NaNoWriMo session is almost over and I am not doing well. Why? My head isn’t as into it as I hoped. Where is my head? Sooooo many other places and most of it can be mentioned just yet. It has to do with November’s plans, how to fill the 8 months between now and Modern Persuasion’s publication, work stuff, and a few other things.
What exactly am I working on for Camp NaNo? It’s my very first NaNoWriMo novel. It is, essentially, about hiring a new Devil. When I first wrote it I had a lot of anger. This was at a point in my life when I still beat myself up for choices that went wrong. It started with a dream in which I had to stop people in hell from going on a ski trip to here. From there it took off and it was so easy to write. I remember being not sure how I wanted it to end so I wrote two endings. I remember still not having 50,000 words and writing an author’s note at the end to make the word count.
I put it away for years, once letting Christi read it when I considered revisiting it. Her feedback was encouraging, but I wasn’t happy with the story and I couldn’t get back to the anger to help me edit it. Then, this year, I had a sudden brainstorm about how it could fit into a bigger picture AND how to make it work without going back to that angry place. I even knew how it needed to end, allowing me to shed the second ending and the author notes. I outlined my new plan, played with a few changes, and seemed to be on a roll. Then I lost steam.
It happens. It’s not that I don’t want to write this story. It’s not that I don’t know what to write. It’s not writer’s block, but writer’s distraction. The question is: why am I so easily distracted? The answer: I am trying to do too much in the story. I am trying to outline the basics on a universe. I am trying to balance showing it, telling it, and discussing it. I have too much dialog explaining the world. I am writing certain things easily. For example, my main character is not our hero. I am playing with the idea of villains being the heroes of their own story. I love disliking her and forcing her to wake up to reality. I love writing the things she is oblivious to, but the reader should clearly see. She is fun, but then I get stuck in explaining the universe. It is too much.
So, what am I going to do? I am going to try to finish the story and then put it away while I work it out. I am going to let someone else read it and help give me some direction on where I can show the universe more than talk about it over and over and over. SO MUCH TALKING ABOUT IT.
I am going to finish though. It’s not that I don’t want to fail… again. It’s more that I want to be done with this story and moving on to editing. I want to be able to move forward with this universe and look at the bigger story. Next week I will let you know how I do.