NaNoWriMo Update #2

My muse is everything from a tempestuous mistress to a fickle bitch. The week started out promising. I wrote 5,981 words Monday, finishing up act one of my story. I mostly feel happy about it. It’s more than I’ve ever written in a single sitting, and it pushed my total quite handily past the point I failed at last year.

The problem after that was, I also felt very fatigued. Not physically (though my legs hurt afterwards from having the laptop on them for so long), but mentally and emotionally. While I planned the plot of this novel out beforehand, I left the characters blank, save a few basic traits to get me started. Monday was my biggest leap in connecting with them, and the first time I’ve been able to start answering where their place is and what they want in this world I’ve created. It was an intensely emotional experience, and even after setting down for the day, I found I couldn’t break out of my writing headspace.

After that extreme burst, I found I couldn’t get act two started on Tuesday. Every time I started writing, I found myself unhappy with what was coming out of it. I knew I had a break coming up from Wednesday to Friday, so I decided it would be best to leave it, and start act two when I came back fresh. Then the unexpected happened. I killed a character.

I knew the main tentpole event of act two. I just didn’t have a full map to get there. And what I was writing to get there was, honestly, kind of boring. Then I just straight up killed one of my main characters. And it sucks. It’s upsetting. In my mind at least, these are fully formed people. And I am done interacting with one of them for good. Her story is finished. But it was also the best thing I could have done. Now I have to deal with the fallout of this decision. The rest of the characters have new arcs, it’s a way to sow discord into the group. My plot is the same, but the characters’ path to the next event is now much more interesting.

As such, today was a planning day. Going over my outline, making some changes, figuring out where to go next. And now, despite a rocky second week, I’m confident in my ability to find my rhythm going into the third.

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