NaNo 2012 1: Attempts at Scope

Yes, it is only just September, meaning that NaNo is almost two full months away, and yet I am already starting to think concretely about how I want this year’s NaNo experience to go.

And let me tell you, it is daunting.

The Overachiever in my is going to try something new this year.  I want to split NaNo into two phases, the 1st through the 14th, and the 15th through the 30th.  The reason for that is that I want to write two books this November, mostly because I can’t decide which one I actually want to write and want to get both of them out of my head.

Two books.  One month.  Crazy?

But I like this focus more.  It’s not about word count, not directly.  It’s not “write as much as possible”, because writing on a silly story does me no good.  I’m not writing to write, or writing to pad a word count to take the lead in some silly competition.  I’m writing to get the story out.

That’s one of the things I’ve learned over the past few months.  Paying attention to your word count is not inherently bad; having that be your main focus is, at least for me.  A word count is a measure of progress, and as long as it is measuring progress on what actually matters (the story), it can be well used; it’s when the word count itself becomes the goal that things get messy.

But this is still a crazy ambitious goal.  Totally my style, but it will be tough.  Switching stories I hope will help; it will give me the rush of starting and finishing twice (I’m hoping to skip the Week 2 and Week 3 doldrums by just doing Week 1 and Week 4 twice).  On the other hand, I am going to have to keep two big stories and two casts of characters in my head, and that will be tough (see also the previous entry on how I’m trying to organize this).

What I’m lacking, I think, is a good reward for myself.  To start the year, when I wrote Sensei’s Story, my reward for finishing was a Kindle (which rocks).  For my current story, the reward is champagne.  For this, though, I’ll need something more than the champagne to keep me going, and on this I will take suggestions.  Nothing too expensive, but something good to look forward to.


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