Nanowrimo starts tomorrow (that’s National Novel Writing Month), and I am still deciding whether or not to participate. I know, right? Nothing like waiting until the last minute.
Except that this isn’t really the last minute. I have a novel, I have an outline, I have a cover. It’s great, just like all novels are great before they’re full of the bad prose and plot holes of a zero draft. I am ready for Nano. There is no one more ready than I am.
So why would I not participate?
I’m at a terrible stopping place in draft five of the novel I’m currently editing. A terrible place. Sure, I’m not in the middle of a chapter or anything, but the queen is about to maybe get killed and I’m about to leave her in suspense for a whole month. It seems cruel. I was supposed to be farther along than this. MUCH farther along. I was supposed to be finished with draft 5 by November 1st. The queen was supposed to know who was trying to kill her. The main character was supposed to make up with her family. I was supposed to put it in a drawer, and then dabble with changes, and then have a readable manuscript by January 1st.
Brian and I were to have lovely nights in front of our new fireplace, both bending over a copy of the manuscript while I read aloud, occasionally scribbling things in the margins. (Which is a joke if you know us. We’re more likely to get into horrible fights with me accusing him of being mean to my writing, and he not understanding why his gentle criticism was reinterpreted so horribly wrong. And then he threatens not to read my stuff anymore if I can’t behave myself. Sometimes there are tears. And then I apologize and dupe him into participating in the same cycle again. But maybe slightly better, because I’m trying to behave myself. I really am.).
My eyes were bigger than my fingers, though. I couldn’t complete 20 pages a day and still be a human. It’s my own fault for giving myself more work than I could manage. That doesn’t make it any easier to put the thing in the drawer at this haphazard place.
I must finish this novel. This year.
But, new novel!!! It’s the prequel to the novel I’m currently writing. That means it’s sort of related, right? We could call it research? No? Anyone?
I’ll probably end up participating. Just knowing that there’s a party of writing going on somewhere on the internets is enough that I can’t stay away. No one can resist the traveling shovel of death, or the wombats, or the mass quantities of caffeine and sugar we’re all consuming. It’s an orgy of words and it’s wonderful. It’s a new novel in only a month; something to fall in and out of love with and then toss aside. The newness is what I crave. I haven’t written anything new in months.
And who knows? Maybe I’ll have time for both?
Yeah, I know.
But don’t rain on my parade, okay?
From what I can see, it sounds like you may need to take a break from all the editing and let yourself play with a new writing idea. If you do decide to take part, good luck!