Thursday, August 4, 2011

Roadtrip Without a Roadmap

50,000 words in 31 days? Pshaw.
Camp Nanowrimo is underway. I may not have any idea where this story is going, but my word count is on track, the story is unfolding, and the pages are filling up.

I've become neurotic, like I always do during Nanowrimo: babbling to myself as I wander through my apartment, acting out scenes to get dialog right, insomnia, leaping out of bed with a flashlight to write down ideas that coalesce as I fall asleep, and drinking copious amounts of coffee even though I had completely kicked the habit. All of these things mean writing to me. It gives me a warm, euphoric feeling. Normally all of this is associated with November, but now the Christmas for Writers comes multiple times a year. I am ecstatic.

I'm don't know what it is about Nanowrimo that gets my writing juices flowing. While I will say that this year has been better in leaps and bounds as far as my writing progress, I just don't feel the things I feel during Nanowrimo as strongly. Something about the community, the deadline, the pressure (get 50,000 words written in a month), and also the lack of pressure (write for the love of writing without judging what comes out). Writing with true literary abandon. It really is magical.

Granted, it's only what, Day 4? Everything is still fresh and new and exciting. I'm sure posts full of complaints will follow in the days to come.

For now, though, I'm settling into the groove and ideas are coming and characters I didn't expect keep introducing themselves and I have gotten distracted doing internet searches to chase down ideas. My brain has spark flying from all the information and ideas. I'm stealing every drop I can from my life and infusing it into my story: the funny guy at the coffee shop, the weird kid at my apartment complex, the street performers on Massachusetts Street, a conversation I had with a friend. Nothing is safe. You'd better not do anything memorable or noteworthy around me for the next month, or you might find it in my story.

I'm even building a Pandora station for mood music for this particular piece. I am finally writing the urban fantasy I've been obsessing about. I have no idea how it ends, and only a couple of vague scenes in the middle, but I have characters and a world and some very strange things going on and a very horrible thing about to happen. I may not be driving a shiny new Porsche easily across the finish line (more like a beat up Ford Taurus clunker), but I have got the wheels to get me there.

Oh, and I'm happy to pick up hitchhikers along the way. Care to go on a road trip without a known final destination? I've already got R.L. Naquin and Could the World Be About to Turn in the car. I'm sure we can fit a few more!

1 comment:

  1. Oddly enough, the first 7 chapters or so of mine ARE a road trip. :-D I'm definitely in the car with you, flapping my arms out the window and singing show tunes.

    I will try to refrain from flashing the carload of lumberjacks trying to pass us on the right. Hand me the Cheetos.