What time of year, you ask?
Well, it’s certainly almost Halloween:
And it’s also almost No-Shave November! (As a huge fan of the ol’ mustachio and a devout Portlander, this is my absolute favorite time of the year.)
But more importantly to our purposes here today, it’s also almost National Novel Writing Month! (God, really? Is it really NaNo time again? I feel like it was just last month. At least, the failure feels like it was last month.)
And I’m definitely participating again this year.
I don’t know why, really. Maybe I’m a glutton for punishment. Or I like to be one of the cool kids whining about meeting their daily word count. Or perhaps it’s that I need a good, old-fashioned arbitrary deadline to get my shit done.
No idea. But I’ve always really enjoyed NaNoWriMo. I like the community, I like the write-ins, and I definitely like the free encouragement flying around on Twitter. I like to imagine it’s all aimed directly at me.
But really—I think NaNo is a great opportunity for writers of all ilks. It’s a good way for new writers to get inspired, to keep working at it, and to finish their first project (and revel in the feeling of success and achievement, so they can get hooked like the rest of us mwahahaha). It’s also great to re-invigorate seasoned writers, to encourage us to get something finished faster or try something new we might not have tried otherwise.
Which leaves me in a bit of a pickle, frankly: I have a book I need to write. “Need” is, perhaps, not the right word—it’s a book I should write, a book I know I can write, a book that would accomplish a lot of the professional goals I have for myself (to keep making money, to start a new series, and to work for a certain publisher). It’s a book I’ve already got a firm idea for; a book my agent is psyched about. I’ve got a detailed outline in the works and I’ve figured out my characters and I’ve given it all a very thorough think-through in terms of series arc and character progression and dramatic build.
But then I have this other book. Yeah, you know what that tone means: it’s a heart book. It’s a book that won’t sell to anyone in particular and isn’t commercial-minded and blabbity blah blah.
I still want to write it.
No decision yet—but I’ve still got a few days. So while I’m mulling it over, I could use your input!
What are you planning to work on for NaNoWriMo this year? What kind of book is it? How much have you got planned, if any?