I hadn’t been planning to participate in NaNoWriMo this year, but I recently spent a day cruising writing blogs, and NaNoWriMo fever is quite enticing.
Still, I didn’t think I’d do it, mainly because I’ve already started my current WIP, ELEMENTAL, and I’ve always thought of a NaNoWriMo project as a “fresh start” kind of project.
But it did occur to me that I could easily work on ELEMENTAL throughout November and use my word count as my NaNoWriMo word count; there’d be some subtraction involved every day, as I’d have to figure out what my word count for NaNoWriMo itself was, and not the for the project as a whole, so I went to bed trying to figure out whether the extra headache would be worth it (math was actually one of my best subjects in school – the other was English – but I’ve never been good at the basics like adding, subtracting, multiplication and division).
Anyway, I went to bed last night after catching sight of this contest at Dear Editor, where you can win a free edit of a picture book manuscript.
(In case you’re wondering what on earth the previous sentence has to do with NaNoWriMo, I guess all I can say is, this post gives a glimpse into how my mind works …)
Now, I don’t have a picture book WIP lying around, so I fell asleep thinking to myself, “gee, I wish I had a completed picture book manuscript so I could enter”. I do have a few picture book “starts”, but picture books are much harder to write than they appear, and that’s all I have to say about the subject.
This morning, I woke up and remembered a WIP I had last worked on years ago. It had started out as a picture book but around 500 words into it, I did have the sense to realize it was way too long to work as a picture book. I kept writing regardless, because I really liked the idea.
The last time I worked on it, my protagonist had just met this really shy dragon; I can remember their meeting almost word for word.
So as soon as I got out of bed, I made a lunge for my computer, clicked on my Writing folder …
The WIP wasn’t there. I’m pretty sure it resides in the innards of one of my older computers, which I might or might not have anymore. And if I did have it, it might or might not work anymore. There’s also a hard drive on the shelf next to me that might or might not contain it (my husband accidentally dismantled that particular PC, thinking it no longer worked – I managed to save the hard drive).
In other words, I’ve lost the WIP.
(Now I’m finally getting to the point.)
After a moment of grief, I put two and two together, and decided, “Yes! I WILL do NaNoWriMo this year. Yes, I will! And I’ll rewrite my was-a-picture-book-now-a-middle-grade novel as my NaNoWriMo project.”
So here I am.