I feel lethargic and half dead.
I feel like that all the time, but that’s due to a combination of a few things: lack of sleep and a poor diet, for starters. I need to eat more “veg-e-tables”, as my dad said when I was growing up. National Novel Writing Month only exacerbates things because I feel slow when writing, and since there’s a deadline and a goal involved, I feel super-duper slow.
As I write this, I’m ahead of the curve by a couple thousand words, but waaaaaaaaaaaaay short of my personal goal of fifty thousand words by the 10th. It was a pipe dream and I didn’t schedule enough time to meet my goal. I took on a new schedule at work (four days a week, ten hour days) and didn’t realize that, OMGOMOGOMGOMG, I’d be half dead after I got home each and every night.
But the story is going nicely, which is what matters.
It’s funny- I never think about daily word counts until Nanowrimo rolls around; once November hits, I start freaking out about how much I need to write every day and checking my word count obsessively after every paragraph or block of dialogue, which is redundant this time out since my big trick from last year isn’t working this time.
WHEN IN DOUBT, TALK IT OUT
Maybe I should get a TV show trying to help people
by throwing bricks at their heads with wonderful yet lame turns of phrase like that. My big trick from 2010’s Nano was to just have the characters talk. My main character (Leroy Stacks says hi)can be a ranty bastard, so whenever I felt the crunch of trying to hit 1,667 words a day, I’d just have him talk about anything. It worked because I hit fifty thousand words by the middle of the month, and after that I took the book out of the trappings of Nanowrimo and worked on it when I could.
Still working on it, but hey- that’s how these things go. Word by word until it looks like something I don’t want to print out and set on fire in anger.
Anyway- this year is different. The seeds of this particular work-in-progress were planted way back in 1998 or so, so this particular set of characters have been rambling around in my brain for quite some time and they have a lot to say. It’s fun for me this year, not that it wasn’t fun for the past seven or so years, but now these long cooped-up characters are finally playing their lives out on the page after being put through hell in my brain for a mental eternity. Sometimes you just gotta let things stew, I guess. A big part of the fun is that things feel more organic this time out- have you ever tried to force a plot point or an occurrence in a story? It’s nasty and it doesn’t fit. To me, forcing plot points into a story is like Trinity dying at the end of THE MATRIX RELOADED- completely useless and ineffectual since she died at the end of REVOLUTIONS. For a more timely reference that will be just as dated soon enough, it’s like Lori from THE WALKING DEAD going outside with a knife to pee on a pregnancy test- completely forced and visually useless. Sure, the drama and what-have-you’s are there, but it’s jarring and, in my opinion, dumb.
Where in the blue hell was I? Sometimes I don’t even know what I’m talking about until I start up the word vomit, and then… consonant-tastic chunks.
Oh, there’s that thought.
I was talking about the characters in my head and how much fun I’m having. This year, the work-in-progress has western trappings with some knights and kung-fu. I also like to write about broken limbs and making things explode. Stabby stuff. Maybe some cussin’. There’s some supernatural stuff too, and I am making it a challenge to not use any traditional monsters, so vampires and werewolves are out.
I look forward to December 1st, as I’ll be able to move out of the Nanowrimo phase and get into editing.
Leroy Stacks still looms…
WHAT I’M WORKING ON
Leeds Company – I just talked about it, homie!
Leroy Stacks Versus The Zombies – What’s this? Why, contrary to the title, it’s a non-zombie story and a “prequel” to…
Nothing’s Ever Normal – Leroy Stacks’ first full length adventure. What kind of trouble can a self-proclaimed superhero get into? LOTS.
The Great Zombie Rewrite – An actual zombie story. Everyone’s got a zombie story in them. This one’s mine.
AND THAT’S IT
Hopefully I make it through November in one piece… good thing I have a stack of movies like this one: