I have, like in many previous years, decided to do NaNoWriMo. The book I’m going to be working on through November is one that brings together elements I’ve been planning for a long time – characters and scenes that have been in my thoughts and notebooks for months and in some cases years.
I’m feeling ready to write and so NaNoWriMo feels like the perfect time to get started. The idea of getting 50,000 words written feels daunting, particularly when I worked out I’m going to be away from home for 10 of the 30 days on November. I’ve decided therefore to have a personal goal separate to the NaNo total – if I get to the end of the month and have written 1,000 words every day I will have established an excellent writing habit and I’ll have the first 30,000 words of my novel. I think this is a great goal, and while I still will be aiming for the full 50K I know I will feel like I’ve achieved something if I hit that personal goal.
Regardless of whether I end the month with 30,000, 50,000 or something in between I definitely won’t be finishing the month with a finished first draft. I think it’s going to probably take at least December and January to get a full first draft. I’m using this first draft to explore my story and my characters and work out exactly what it is they have to say. I know where they’re starting, I know where they’re going to end up and I know a few of the things they’re going to be doing along the way. The rest of it I look forward to discovering as I write.