Shit, is November Nearly Over Already?

Welp, November ends on Sunday, as does NaNoWriMo 2014. I have 26,636 words written, and I know I will not be reaching 50,000 by the end of the month. Remember when I said I wanted to hit 35k last week? Same. Such is life.

But this is certainly not a surrender, nor a cynical rejection of the work I’ve put in to this point. The middle of the month was slow writing for me. Nearly two-thirds of that 26k is one contiguous section that will likely form the first chapter or two of this novel. After powering through the opening story-arch, I honestly became bored with it. I knew where I wanted it to go, but the process had become stale.

New Creative Life

So I sat and pondered, and took myriad notes about other sections, future characters to meet, or cities to explore. And then my creative drive took a turn I did not expect; I wrote a prologue, and I am now in the process of rewriting and expanding that prologue with new wrinkles that will add greater depth to the entire story.

Yes, I became bored with following my protagonist around for a couple of days, which means that future readers will also become bored, which means some rewriting is necessary. But that staleness lead me to consider other aspects of my story that were underdeveloped.

That is what is simultaneously fascinating and infuriating about the creative process, as I’m sure many other writers have experienced. Sometimes, you have to slog through the less exciting, expository sections of the story, until your mind wanders off to question the larger themes and existential questions.

Why does character X feel/act this way? How does this story move from point A to point B… and then to point Z? What am I actually trying to say in this story?

Rough patches are a natural part of any journey, creative or otherwise. I think it’s easy to only rely on creative inspiration for any project. Pushing forward through the boredom is tough, and that’s something I’m still learning how to do.

Remember when I began NaNo, and said I would consider it a win if I hit 25k-30k words, because at least then I would have a solid start to a long-dormant project? Same. We’re just over three weeks into NaNo, and I’ve already won.

Remaining goal: 30,000+. Keep moving forward.

Steve D

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