Nov. 3rd, 2016

myaru: (VP - Shiho)
At the beginning of the year, when setting my goals, I took Nano off the list--again--because it has a record of burning me out for one or two months after the finish line, and that's counter-productive re: the "write every day" goal.


There's a yearly word count to meet on my goal sheet, and for the last two months, I have NOT been writing every day. I'm damn well going to meet that word count, so... there's some catching up to do, and Nano is as good a way as any to make up the deficit. Only problem is, since this wasn't in the plan, I also have nothing lined up that would work for a 50k word sprint. Technically you're not supposed to use something you're already working on, which I respect. However, as someone who tends to write long-form stories voluntarily anyway, I'm less inclined to follow the major rule, which insists you must work on a novel.


1. Come up with a new novel idea
Pros: this is the holy grail of Nanowrimo, and it's not like the story has to be good. I've got tons of one-liner ideas for stories.

Cons: even I hate working with nothing, and this is coming from someone who uses the pantser/Pratchett method of having a few cool ideas and wandering around to connect the dots while writing. Having "a few ideas" amounts to waaaay more guidance than you might think.

2. Use a novel idea/plan that isn't ready
Pros: there's more internal guidance for the story, as mentioned above. Doing this means writing something I already want to explore, so that's also cool, and I can get the connect-the-dots draft out of the way sooner. This way would definitely allow more thorough fleshing-out of characters and ideas I haven't been thinking about lately.

Cons: there are volumes of literature out there to invalidate a writer's assessment of their own work and whether or not it's ready, which amounts to, "Stop being afraid to start and just do it!" Sometimes the writer is right, though--it isn't ready. Starting before you aren't ready, legit, is a good way to stall and abandon a story, in my opinion. See: The Summer Chronicle. First of all, I started with a very vague idea. When it grew a surprise plot, that was cool! There was no planning involved in this, though; I got a long way in before finally stalling and writing myself into... if not a box, a situation where I did not want to continue because I hadn't adequately planned for one of my seat-of-the-pants plot twists. Is that story finished? Hahahah no.

That said, I was also kind of afraid to write Ashnard. So there's some truth to the "stop being afraid" thing.

3. Do the anthology-of-short-stories again
Pros: I get to write in smaller bites, and explore more than one idea.

Cons: This technically isn't an approved project type, unless Nano has changed. (Which is possible. I don't bother to look at the website anymore, because "Write 50k words in a month" is all I feel the need to know.) Also, this runs into the problem #1 has: using lots of story ideas that are ill-considered at best.

4. Ignore the rules and continue the current project anyway
Pros: no changes necessary right now!

Cons: This project definitely doesn't have fifty thousand words in it, which brings me to the problems mentioned in #1 and #3.

5. Use this opportunity to rewrite something long
Pros: This is much easier than coming up with something new; a lot of the work is done for me, and I have three projects like this sitting in the electronic drawer, waiting for rewriting. There are also long fanfic projects that fit this bill, if I don't feel like working on the originals.

Cons: Honesty is the best policy, and--I don't feel like working on that stuff right now. This kind of project can involve a ton of preparation and editorial work as well. I mean, if you're not going to seriously reconsider or re-plot or re-develop... why do the second draft? I think there's a good reason this isn't an "approved" sort of project for Nano.

I'm already late, so I need to decide by the end of today. Hmmmm. I'm leaning toward #2 or #3. I've done the anthology thing before, and it did expand my available pool of revisable work quite a bit, but... yeah, hm.

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