It is day 21 of NaNoWriMo, and day 21 of me slogging through my novel.
I think i’ve hit the mid novel slump. It’s that point when you’ve been working on the same project for some time, and your brain starts saying things like “but what if it isn’t any good?” And “I don’t know what to write.” Or my favorite: “You Suck!”
Then I start looking at sales numbers, or old comments, or anything else that reinforces my brain trying to tell me that I suck.
Let me just say… THAT’S THE WRONG THING TO DO!
Usually when I get in this funk I switch projects for a while, and then come back at it with fresh eyes. It helps cut down on the BS my brain wants to tell me. Helps me separate the ideas brewing in my head from what’s actually on the page. Gives me perspective.
I’m trying not to do that this time. Switching projects is great. It’s given me a back log of stories to pull from, and tons of ideas and fresh perspectives. See, the problem with switching projects is that it also makes it really easy just to… stop working on that project. And never finish it.
I wrote and published just over 100k words this year. But I have 350k words written, and that’s only on the stories I’m tracking. About 2/3rds of that was written in the last year.
To put it another way… I am tracking my progress on 34 short stories, 17 novellas and novels. I finished 20 short stories and 3 novellas. (Not looking good for the longer stuff). But I’ve clearly added to all of those stories over the last year. I’ve also come up with new stories to add to the list.
This isn’t even including the file I have with “ideas” that literally has thousands of story starters, each one between 100, and 5,000 words long.
Geez, I’ve written a lot over the course of my life. But… of those thousands of stories, only a scant few are finished. That’s not a good thing if I want to make my living as a writer.
So I have made this NaNoWriMo’s goal to work on one novel… almost exclusively. I have edited and worked on a short story that I’d like to have out next month, but my main focus is “Mermaids Curse”, which is just under 30,000 words right now.
I’ve added back story, world building, characterization, descriptions, and little plot points that add to all of these… and I’m still going.
But, somethings missing, and I’m not quite sure what it is. I know much of the second half is more action oriented, with the action helping to build the relationship, and character of each person. And the first half focuses almost exclusively on the relationship of the two main characters, with one big action scene right before the split of part one and two, and the shift in characters.
Do I know if any of this will work and create a decent book? Hell no! Am I going to write it anyway? Yes. Because it’s worth it to me.