Yep, the rumours are true (literally nobody is spreading rumours Emma, sit down) – I’m giving NaNoWriMo a crack this year, which means, in turn, by November 30th I should (hopefully) have written my first proper novel.
For the uninitiated, NaNoWriMo – or National Novel Writing Month – is an online scheme which runs in November every year. The premise is simple: give up your spare time, your everyday routine and a small portion of your soul and get that idea for a 50,000 word novel that you’ve been sitting on forever written into something to be proud of. The website itself – http://nanowrimo.org – allows you to create a profile in which you announce your novel, update your word count, and generally share your progress with likeminded novelists-to-be. There’s a really cool feature for those who have time to commit their online and everyday life to getting their novel penned, which involves selecting your geographical location and being drafted into meetups in your area to discuss plots, ideas, and hash out any little niggles you might be having with things like character development or creating the perfect setting. I’m routinely receiving emails from the Birmingham group, but living a good hour away and holding down a full-time job at the same time as trying to write means I’m relying on the Twitter community to get me through the long haul!
So, my novel. My novel isn’t the story I originally set out to write. I spent the best part of my summer fabricating a fictional island and a host of characters to write this coming-of-age, YA-style piece in which I shamelessly offloaded all my personal problems and struggles onto this character I’d created. It felt a bit too personal, and I attempted to turn it into a murder mystery, but it wasn’t working for me.
In the past week alone, I’ve started from scratch and I’ve now got my whole plot AND a sub plot in mind. It’s day 2 of NaNoWriMo and I’m already a few thousand words in. I’ve never felt so motivated to write!
In a little writing break a few nights ago I wrote this little blurb, which I’ll share with you all to give you an idea of what sort of thing I’m writing. It’ll by no means be perfect, and I’m not sure the finished piece will ever go further than my own hard drive, but here it is!
Years into the future, a bustling capital city is in the throes of a meteorological movement dubbed the Magna Metum. From the Latin meaning ‘great fear’, the Magna Metum has shrouded the city in darkness, clogged the air with harmful chemicals and invoked a fear of one’s neighbour in each citizen.
Frank Mallory was once the posterchild superhero, whose reputation was left in tatters upon renouncing his powers to start a family. Now a social outcast, estranged from his wife, Frank lives alone in the apartment he can’t afford to maintain, visited only by his former agent-turned-best friend family man Fuzz. Desperate to reconnect with his runaway son, Rover, and to bring back his public image from where it sits in the gutter, could the lead on the cause of Magna Metum Frank has inadvertantly unearthed be the solution to all of his problems?
Happy writing, everyone! If you’re taking part in NaNoWriMo too, I’d love to hear what you’ve got up your sleeve.
Until next time,