Sunday, November 07, 2010

end of week one

okay, here's the deal. this is NaNoWriMo, and i'm going to write a novel in a month, because that's what you do.

last year, my first NaNo, i didn't know a damn thing about writing. I had never written anything longer than maybe 5000 words. i hadn't written anything i felt proud of since high school. so when i sat down and ideas started flowing, and i got more and more words, it boosted my confidence immensely. i knew it wasn't perfect. i suspected it wasn't even that good, but i kept going, because the ideas kept coming.

now after writing that, putting it away, going back to it, editing, redrafting, editing again, i realized that as much as i love the story plot-wise, from a structural point of view it's really seriously flawed. my main character is dull (sorry Ruby, but it's true and you know it), my writing is okay, but inconsistent, and the story doesn't really achieve what i was hoping it would.

is this stuff that upsets me? no, not at all. because i'm learning from it. i'm learning from all the reading and writing and talking about writing that i've been doing in the last six months.

here's where i think my problem lies for NaNo this year (did i mention i'm having problems? yeah, hence blogging rather than writing). i keep learning things, these 'rules' about what should and shouldn't happen when you write, about what you need to make compelling characters, about how to keep the story moving so people won't throw it against the wall in frustration. i'm learning these things that help when you actually have a story. i still don't have a story. i have 17k words of lead-up, i just don't know what it's leading up to. (I suspect it might be leading up to action, which is another wrinkle, because i don't know how to write action either.)

i'm doing this to challenge myself, to prove to myself that i still have it in me to finish a draft, and to get enough down on paper that it 'counts' as a novel in some way, shape, or form. i'm starting to suspect that whatever this is, it ain't a novel. i'm going to finish it, because i am, but i may just never look at it again at this rate.


(have to edit to add- do you see the problems i'm having ^ writing coherently? the fuck?)

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