Hello and welcome the official, stand-alone NaNoWriMo post for 2019! I talked about NaNoWriMo in my Currently Obsessed With post, but while writing that post, I decided I needed to do a recap post. I really wanted to talk about my writing adventures this year, but I also wanted to give myself a break between reaching 50,000 words and writing this post. I wanted it to sink in a little bit.
It’s funny. I’ve been doing NaNo for a really long time- this is my 14th year doing it, and not only have I done it every year since 2006, I’ve reached the word count every year, sometimes with multiple novels. This last month, I’ve been thinking a lot about NaNo, and what I’ve learned since that very first year.
But first, this year.
I wrote this sci-fi/apocalyptic story. I had this idea for an apocalyptic take on the 4 horsemen of the apocalypse, but I didn’t really know what to do with it.
But then I had this dream where the end of the world happened and everyone was really happy about it. There are a lot more details to this dream, but for some reason, I decided the ideas would go great together.
So the elevator pitch is an alien invasion meets the 4 horsemen of the apocalypse.
Except there are more aliens then 4 horsemen. They didn’t really show up, and what they represent didn’t really happen. It ended up being more about these two sisters who are on opposing sides- one working with the aliens, and the other working in the resistance.
This was one of those novels that I went with only a vague idea of what I wanted to do. It wasn’t vaguely planned or outlined like previous years. All things considered, it went a lot better than I thought it would, considering the lack of planning, and the complete and total pantsing of this novel.
It’s an idea I wouldn’t mind coming back to, now that I’ve written 50,000 words of it. I feel like I have a better idea of what I want to do with it. I don’t know if the 4 horsemen would factor into it at all, but I love the idea of two sisters on opposing sides of the alien invasion.
Maybe this 4 horsemen idea could be shelved for a different idea that comes along. There’s no telling what I’ll come up. It could be an interesting combination but you never know where things will take you. That’s the nice thing about being a pantser. Things end up going in a different direction then you expected.
I did have fun with it though, and I really did like that I wasn’t completely sure where it was going to go.
One thing I want to go back to for next year is having another project to work on.
I’m not talking multiple, 50k novels, because I barely have enough energy for one, much less two or three. But there were quite a few times this year where I just needed a break from this particular project, and I felt like I needed to write something else. I caught up on blog posts, and I did some of the prompts from The Severed Moon.
They didn’t spark any ideas but it was good to do some writing prompts. The cover is really pretty, and there’s something witchy about it, There’s a mix of questions and quotes from the her books. I did a lot of questions, and maybe that’s why it didn’t spark any ideas. I just wasn’t in the right frame of mind for the quotes, but maybe I’ll give those a try.
It really makes me want to do more guided journaling. I’m not the best at keeping up with it, since I’m excited at first and I lose interest after a while, but maybe I need to get in the habit of doing it. Even a crochet project might help. I haven’t been in a big crocheting mood lately, but maybe I will be next year.
Still, I think having some sort of background project will be good. It’s nice to have something else to work on, and it’s a good way to reset myself. At least I have almost a whole year to figure it out!
I think I may get a little more creative with how I plan my novels.
Either I completely wing it, or I have a vague outline in Scrivener. I might have some notes in one of my 50 million notebooks too.
But I have a bunch of art supplies and sketchbooks at home, so it could be fun to terribly draw out my ideas, or…well, I’m not quite sure really. I don’t have a set idea for how I would do it. I just know I have a ton of brush pens and sketchbooks, and right now, it seems really fun to write out my notes and thoughts and ideas in a completely different way.
Depending on what ideas I come up, or with some ideas that I end up revisiting, we’ll see how this goes. I’m definitely not going to guarantee I’ll do this next year, because I might not even be interested in doing this a year from now. If I do, then I’ll go for it, If not, maybe I’ll give it a try another year.
Here’s an interesting thought.
I love NaNo, I’ve done it for years, and my life would not be the same without it. I can’t see myself not doing, and I love the writing 50,000 word novel in one month thing. But right now, I’m curious to see what a November would look like if I did 50,000 words of blog posts, writing prompts and other ideas? I’ve been tempted to try to the blog post thing for a few years, but since I do mostly reviews, I don’t know how well that would work. Usually, the longer I wait to write them, the harder it is for me to write a review, especially if I don’t have strong opinions either way.
But this blog did start out with me writing about my NaNo adventures, so I could talk about that. And I could write non-review posts too. That’s something to keep in mind.
I’m not the biggest planner, and my planning ranges from “very vague idea” to “detailed notes that guide me along the way but aren’t so detailed that there’s no room for the unexpected.” But this is something to consider as well, either as a side project or a main project. I don’t want to get too far ahead of myself but I could easily reassess in, like, July or August to see how I’m feeling and what I might want to work on.
Honestly, I’m feeling a little rambly and all over the place.
Is rambly even a word? If it’s not, that’s fine, because it seems like the right thing to say. I think I’m going to stick with it.
I do feel like I’ve said everything I wanted to say about NaNo 2019, and I’m glad there’s some distance between when I reached 50k and when I’m writing this.
I hope everyone has a great day!