NaNo and #Diversiverse

Not necessarily in that order. Next week is A More Diverse Universe week. The idea is to read one book of speculative fiction written by a person of colour and then reviewing it. I encourage you to read the post I linked because it is powerful and beautiful (and has many other links of interest). I’m not 100% sure I’ll be able to finish a book on time (see my ramblings on NaNo below), but if I start on a book this week I can probably manage it and put up a post about it within the time period. It’s a much smaller event than previous years from the sound of it. I want to read The Goddess Chronicle by Natsuo Kirino. I’ve read one of Kirino’s books before and bounced off it a bit, but this sounds to be very different and there were a lot of things I did like. I make no illusions that I might not finish or that, if I do finish, I might not manage to comment on it. But there we are: a clear goal in reading. I’m looking forward to seeing what other people are reading too. ^-^

NaNoWriMo rebelling is… Well, it was going decently until this weekend when I fell behind and am not likely to catch up until later this week. (There are limits to what I’ll count towards a NaNoRebel count; posts like this belong in that category. The brief non-fiction essay draft I got detailed with on the first couple of days is a different story.) I’m working on two stories (and, apparently, a non-fiction essay that won’t leave me alone; I think it likes raspberries. Anyone have some to lure it away with?): a short story for a friend. I’m being a bit close-lipped about that one especially because I do want to try and keep it a surprise. I’ve already noticed that I won’t be able to show off more than I already did until the story is through another round of edits, but at least I have a better idea of where it’s going and I’m pretty excited to get it written and polished up. Even if it does fight me tooth and nail even when I know where it’s going. (And it’ll be a fair bit longer than I anticipated when all’s said and done, I think.)

 

I had to break off the work to write a brief outline. It’s very tempting to put that in between quotation marks because I’m a pantser. I never write outlines because the story lives in my head and changes as the plot and characters demand it and any outline I write tends to be tossed out two or three sentences in. It’s a very weird feeling to look on what I have of that story and realise I didn’t stray that much from the outline. I’m not sure whether that’s a sign that my ability to gauge the direction of a story is getting better or whether that’s a sign that my old methods are entirely broken and I really do need to relearn everything. Maybe it’s a combination. Things usually are, after all. But it’s interesting. I haven’t had a chance to write more, so I’m not yet convinced it actually helps. We’ll see.

That’s not true, by the by. I’ve had plenty of chance to write more. It was a weekend, after all, but I’ve been sleeping very badly. It makes me cranky and to avoid getting my sleep schedule upset further I’ve been living off coffee, which gives me massive headaches. So! I generally switch to something a little less thought-involved such as gaming or watching a movie to keep from keeling over into bed. As much as my writing habits and needs have changed, that one has remained constant at least. And I can afford to take a couple of days off for self-care. I know I can write 50K in a month even if I don’t write daily. I know I can catch up on this word count. Right now, as you can see, I am up to rambling about NaNo. Maybe I can get a few words in tonight. That non-fiction thing is haunting me… Food and some aspirin first, though, whatever I decide on. >>

But wait! What about the second story I said I was working on?! I haven’t written out a (partial) outline for that one yet and it’s a project I’m working on solely for me, so now that the short story seems willing to cooperate Ill be sticking to that. Given the length of the, ah, outline and my word count’s tendency to explode I wouldn’t be surprised to see the end result polished into a short novel or a long novella. Novella would be better and it’s what I’m assuming. Anyway, the second story still only has its nebulous outline living in my tired, overfull brain, so I should really try to work it out at some point. I’m still very resistant to writing the things. It’ll be very interesting to see how these two work. If they do work I think I’ll start on externalising all the unfinished pieces I have in my head, put them all in one spot and just see how far each of them gets. And then, hopefully, struggle less with the writing of them.

That could be fun. And it’s okay if I toss out everything after the second sentence. I can just redo it when I need to! (That’s always been one of the reasons I dislike externally stored outlines. You have to adapt them by hand instead of just mentally tossing ideas in and out.) But, for now, I think I’ll continue my plan of not asking much of my brain and seeing how I feel about writing anything longer than a short comment after supper. This wasn’t quite the NaNo update I’d wanted to write, but I’m afraid it’s the one I have in me and we’re approaching the second week now, so it’s high time I actually wrote an update!

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