Thursday, November 19, 2009

NaNoWriMo Update

About NaNoWriMo.

NaNoWriMo is dead to me.

I’m so over it. This novel cannot be written in a month. There’s just way too much raw material to be dissected and put back together in a short amount of time. (This is me being facetious.) Projected finish date: December. Of 2020.

My protagonist is still in the basement, though the chapter is now filled with various flashbacks and back-story. Inevitably, I’ll have to return to the basement and finish that whole bit.

This writing business is very tricky. You have to be consistent. You can’t introduce someone by one name, for instance, and then refer to them by another name later on in the story. It gives readers a lack of confidence in their storyteller.

Also, you can’t switch tenses and points of view all of the time. If you start writing in the past tense, i.e. she walked down the street or she kicked the dog or she drank the fizzy, vile tasting liquid (I know… you’re intrigued now!) you have to KEEP WRITING in the past tense. You can’t, for instance, do this:

She walked down the street and kicked the dog. She wished she hadn’t consumed that vile, fizzy liquid. She moves toward the house. She is quick on her toes, now. She sees the dirty cop.

Which is why I have decided that in order to make sure I am consistent, I am going to write my entire novel in the Present Perfect Progressive tense:

Throughout the entire year, she has desired to walk into the basement. Since her youth, basements have held special significance to her. In fact, since 1992, she has known that walking into that basement would be… significant.

It’s going to blow your socks off.

I’m taking a short break from the “novel” to work on a short story that has been in progress for over a year. I’d like to finish it.

My problem invariably goes back to my short attention span, which might be attributed to my inability to follow through with anything. This probably has something to do with my childhood or someone yelling at me about some project I actually completed or maybe it has something to do with my fear of going over Niagara Falls. It could be anything, really.

I’ll keep you updated. Maybe.


Brittany at Mommy Words said...

Uh oh! Good luck! I am hating this NaBloPoMo thing - I don't think I will even attempt a novel in the near future! Good for you for trying!

Shannon said...

From one upstate New York writer to another: Keep at it, Holly. These things take time. I've been writing (nonfiction) for 20 years and there are always trials and tribulations. Hang in there, sweetie! :)


EcoMeg said...

I agree - it would be difficult to follow through with that even if you didn't have all of the other distractions of family, etc. And it's Thanksgiving! Way too much going on. Keep at it - I'm sure the finished product will be so great!

Holly said...

Thanks for the encouragement!!!