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Thursday, October 1, 2009

Just a Little Bit Crazy... NaNo and More.

So... this weeks been a little bit rocky. A little bit rough. Things aren't going exactly as planned. And, yes, I did think Tuesday was Wednesday. >.< More wishful thinking on my part than anything.

But! Never fear! I will regroup, recite the St. Crispin's Day speech, and soldier onward. Ever onward. Hmmm, that sounds like a song ;o)

After a very turbulent Wednesday I think I have my feet under me again and now I can sit down and face the looming decision of NaNo.

To NaNo or not to NaNo, that is the question.
Whether it is nobler in the mind to suffer
the glares and cries of neglected family
or take up not sleeping to get the word count
and pray to make my goal? To write, to publish;
No more, and by publish to say we start
the heartache and a thousand natural shocks
that writers are heir to, 'tis consummation
devoutly to be wished. To publish. To be critiqued.
To write; perchance to inspire: ay, there's the rub.
For of that dream what reality might come?

I had sugar for breakfast this morning. You can tell, can't you?

I've done NaNo the past two years with little fuss. I usually aim for a 3k/day goal so that I have extra words and can take Sundays and Thanksgiving off. In 2007 and 2008 I made the 50k mark with words to spare. The manuscripts were rough, they needed an ending, and lots of editing, but I have the words to edit and they aren't bad.

In 2007 I wrote Penumbra Children, there was a single mom, seven kids, space ships, pirates, vampires, and werewolves. I even had the Traveling Shovel of Death. In fact, the only thing missing was little green men from Mars.

In 2008 I wrote The Misadventures of Skippy the Warlord. A wanna-be hero turned sidekick loses his day job and takes up Evil Overlording. Lots of puns, good characters, and the kind of insanity that keeps a plot rolling.

Neither book is on my hot list to edit and show to agents. I've always used NaNo to play. And that brings me to this years problem.

I've spent the year trying to edit and get ready for the eventual query. Most of my year was devoted to the rewriting and editing of Under a Dark Star. I'm nowhere near a final draft. I meant to have a rough draft of At Wars End finished by now and be editing UDS. That idea fizzled in August when I was distracted by other shiny plots.

The problem is, I don't have a shiny plot waiting to be my NaNo fun. I do have some possibilities though. So help me out, what sounds exciting and fun?

Time of Death (cyberpunk/sci-fi) - Detective Ru Harlowe is called back from retirement to solve a serial killer case that's stretched over sixty years. With his old boss, a new partner, and clues that make Harlowe a suspect he's up against the wall and racing time. Written in noir style first person (or, that's the plan).

Beauty and the Beast (dark comic fantasy)- Roland is the Prince Wylan's man-at-arms (read babysitter) and when the prince is sent off on a quest to save a trapped beauty Roland is along for the ride to make sure the prince doesn't get distracted or devoured. But the curse is more than it seems. Once you enter the castle, you can't get out until Beauty falls in love. There's no witch in sight but Lady Isolde looks suspicious and someone has lost their mind and started stabbing people. Roland needs to make his prince look good (and maybe woe a girl of his own) so they can make it out alive.

Dungeon Crawl (urban fantasy)- Sari Fallen is one of the seven heroes of the Vondrin Gate war. Now she's a freelance demon hunter with a good relationship with the local police department. Things aren't fabulous, but they aren't bad. Until a stalker kills her best friend, her would-be lover is framed, and dark rumors put her back into an underworld of soul-trading and intrigue. To save those she loves Sari will face the gods themselves. To save the world she might even trade her soul.

At Wars End (military sci-fi)- Ajax Hajari lost his legs in an avalanche, then lost his finacee when he had cyborg limbs attached. Now he's close to losing everything else to the Triumvirate fleet commander Kaminari. When the war to save his homeworld is lost his enemy becomes an ephemeral ally and Jax learns the battles he fought were only a small part of a much larger war. At this War's End there is no peace, only another battle.

The Game (sci-fi)- Andrea is a solar array specialist on Orbital platform nine. She's top of her class, brainy, wealthy, and conservative. At least, that's what her collegues see. On her own time Andrea is a top Game player, focused on the elusive prize of reaching Level 10 first. She loves facing down killerbots and solving puzzles in the VR world. But when an elitest plot traps her between the world of the Game and a reality with a tyrant Andrea has to save the day somehow. I just haven't worked out the ending to this little plot yet :oP

Vote. Offer ideas. Am I doing NaNo this year? Can I write something fun? Or should I be a Good Girl and edit some more? Or go crazy and do both???


  1. Of course you're doing NaNo this year. You just haven't come to terms with it yet. ;-)

    Love your redo of Shakespeare - hear hear for sugar!

    I vote for Beauty & the Beast, or Dungeon Crawl. Those sound like plots I'd be interested in (and plots where the stray vampire, ninja or Traveling Shovel of Death would easily fit in).

  2. The Shakespearean NaNo poem is awesome!

    NaNo is about insane progress, not procrastinating on current WIPs. *nods emphatically*

    I vote for Beauty and the Beast. I'm a sucker for anything remotely fairy tale related, and this one sounds like a lot of fun.

    And Kudos for the fact that your NaNo plots are way more thought out than mine.

  3. Mary- I cheat. When plots mug me during the year I write down a rough outline and maybe a catch phrase or two. I have hundreds of unused plots and outlines that I want to write eventually. For NaNo I just pull out the most likely suspects.

  4. Beauty & the Best, hands down! Of course, I'm not much for sci-fi, which may explain my preference, but that sounds like a book I would totally read!! You could eventually polish that and sub it to agents!

  5. Beauty and the Beast. Just because I love twists on fairy tales.

    I haven't done NaNo the past couple of years because I was busy working. However it looks like I might be home this year. Don't know if I feel like trying it though. I'm a slow typist so getting to that goal takes a lot of hours of my time.

  6. Dun-geon Crawl! Dun-geon Crawl! Dun-geon Crawl!

    C'mon, you'll listen to your twin, right? O:)

    And what's this rubbish about not doing nano? Pah. It's the one month of the year where the entire POINT is to have fun with writing. OF COURSE you're doing it. :P

    PS word verification: Conch. Your blog has it in for me - it keeps generating real words in a subtle attempt to let me know %-)

  7. I vote for any of the top three: Time of Death, Beauty & the Beast, or Dungeon Crawl!

    All sound like things I'd love to read - and I definitely enjoyed your 2007 NaNo!

  8. I like Time Of Death best. That just sounds fun!!!

    As for doing NaNo, I really think you should take a year off. You have SO many projects. Focus on getting one of those NaNo book ready to query. You'll feel so good when you do!

    For me, NaNo is to get a new work to spend all my time on and get ready for publication. That's what I'm doing with Monarch and Breakaway. Maybe next year I'll do NaNo. :)

  9. B&B caught my attention the most. B-)

    Also, loved your take on Hamlet. :P