Thursday, November 4, 2010
My greatest strength is my greatest weakness. I think too much.
I have been sparked with excitement about NaNoWriMo (National November Writing Month); however, it really stresses me out as well. I had never heard of this event until just a couple of weeks ago.
Originally, I was planning on really starting to work on a fiction novel and polish my blog material into a “mom memoir.” My plan was to have exactly one and a half of these things done by the end of next year.
Then I hear about NaNoWriMo, and my heart is all a-flutter. I think, “I must do it!” Then, I think, “I cannot.” (One thing is for sure, I will now always remember that November is one of the months with only 30 days.)
Here is what I’ve decided. I want to begin that novel now. I want it to be fiction. I will not be able to write the required 1,700+ words per day, but I will block out time for writing toward my novel starting now. Two days ago I wrote 1,500 words! This is great, this is wonderful, I am fulfilling my life’s purpose.
However, I am having a hard time nailing down my character, getting to know this person, and make her live and breathe. This is probably due to the fact that I cannot stop writing from my own experiences. I certainly want to draw from my own experiences, but I did not originally intend to write ONLY from my own experiences.
It seems that in trying to “get to know” my character, I am still only trying to get to know myself.
And my mind? It won’t stop. I am constantly thinking and pondering and wondering about this character.
What does she look like?
How is she different from me?
What does she learn?
What problems does she face?
I would also prefer to have a “premise” figured out. What do I want my readers to feel? What do I want my readers to learn?
I am so indecisive about it all, and it swirls around my head like a million question marks. I am fretting.
This is not the purpose of NaNoWriMo, in which you must not edit and only write like mad for 30 days. I am also haunted by a quote from Writing Down the Bones, “Write like no one is looking over your shoulder.”
All that spews forth is….me, and not a fiction character. Do I go with it? Do I force a fiction piece?
I know. I hear you out there. Just write.
(So…Any ideas or answers for me?)