Friday, October 2, 2009

NANO Conflict

I'm definitely planning to take a break from the daily grind, and I guess I see NANO as an opportunity to practice your writing and hone your plotting and plodding skills.

By the end of the month, I usually think about that part from Blue Castle (LM Montgomery) when the guy went on a trip for the first time in his marriage to the main character (I haven't read the book in ages, so I'm drawing a blank on the names atm). When he came back and saw the houselights burning and the chimney smoking, and his wife waiting for him, he felt a surge of emotion from the revelation that he was HOME and she (Valancy! I remembered ONE of the character's names, too lazy to hunt through my book stacks for the one little paperback. His name started with a T, I think) was a huge part of that. I don't know if he discovered that he loved her yet (it was a marriage of pity on his side, she thought she was going to die and proposed to the guy she loved, making sure he knew that she wasn't going to live longer than a few months anyway and it would be one last lark before she dropped dead from an aneurysm). He didn't mentally acknowledge his love for her until much later when she almost got hit by a train.


My point here is that taking a month off to suffer through the angsts of working on an all new strange and often problematically annoying plot gives me enough time away to fully appreciate how clear and fully set up the old WIPS (that have already been through multiple drafts and revisions) are.

In more basic terms - it's like slipping on my old comfy shoes after wearing brand new heels all day at work.


All summer, I knew exactly what I was going to write for NANO. It's a super secret idea that I came up with last year when joking around with friends. I still want to do it, but now I'm wondering if I should broaden the plot a little bit. Give myself room to emote over some of the stuff that I'm going through in real life. Or I can do the OTHER thing instead.

The other thing is a contemporary coming of age story, as seen through the eyes of a pained older sister, who sees her life getting turned into a Jane Austin novel, but without the heroes swooping in to fix things. Something like - "In real life, Elizabeth would have had to do a bit more to help save her sister besides sitting next to the mail box waiting for letters from her aunt."

The conflict comes in at the point that I'm REALLY having a hard time trying to take my 'Jane Austin Novel, for Realz' idea and turning it into an urban fantasy. Unless I go the newfangled version of Sense and Sensibility route and turn an important character into a sea monster (I still feel sorry for poor Col Brandon).

Going with the new idea alone - I basically wasted all of the secretive NANO research and brainstorming I did earlier in the year. And I still want to work on that super secret project dang it!

The main reason why I want to work on the other novel right now is because my emotions on the matter are still close to the surface and would aid in the writing. It would be good therapy too - especially since as an author, I am in full control of the outcome of the situation.

Is a puzzlement...

*sighs thinking about happier days and launches into a random confession*

As kids, we loved playing out movies we watched - which fortunately were just musicals like the King and I and Sound of Music. My oldest sister would always play the King, because she had Yul Brenner's facial expressions down pat. She solved the baldness problem by wrapping a towel around her head and hiding away her long thick hair.

My baby sister and brother played *all* of the Siamese children. And they did a fairly good job. Was hilarious.

Back to NANO this is going to be my third year. Two wins so far.

Writing 50,000 words = easy.

Writing 50,000 words that make sense = er???

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