Better than half-way through November, and I am now trailing in NaNoWriMo by oh, a little over 11,000 words. I think it’s a pretty safe bet I’m not going to hit 50K by the 30th, but I’m ok with that.
I started out with the usual enthusiasm, thinking I’d be able to steal some time at work to write, and that worked out pretty well for the first couple of days, but then it quickly became impossible to maintain. This is no great tragedy, apart from not accomplishing much writing. Since I never intended this project to become a novel, just filling in the background blanks on another character that I want to introduce into the vampire novel (which I’m still referring to as ‘Revenants Abroad’ for lack of a more inspired title). I figure it’s not lost time or effort, however much I get done.
And then a funny thing happened.
I decided I really like this character, and she’s ending up in some pretty interesting situations and developing quite a history. I’m taking her in directions I haven’t gone before, some of which are frankly a challenge for me. But that’s good. I decided weeks ago that no one was ever going to see any of it, basically freeing myself to write anything I wanted without the fear of being judged or people looking at me askance and wondering what was wrong with me. Even still, I’m having a hard time with some of it.
Somewhere along the way I started thinking in terms of maybe using some of this in the novel, or even a separate novel about this character, and maybe that’s what put the brakes on my free-wheeling attitude. When I write with the idea of someone other than me reading it I self-censor far too much. I don’t know how to get past that. It’s not even anything particularly edgy or weird, but it’s new territory for me. I think what I most fear is that I’m not doing it well, that it’s all cliched and trite and not evoking what it’s supposed to. I don’t know.
I guess I’ll keep going and see what happens, even if I crash and burn.