Panic! At the NaNo

I’m back! Not that… anyone noticed I was gone, but I’m back! A mini-staycation from the day job was spent largely in bed or doing some much needed deep cleaning of the homestead. I did get some writing done, but blogging was not on my schedule. In the future I’ll try and announce programming interruptions before they happen, not after.

So, as of this writing, we are just ten short days away from the official start of NaNoWriMo, and I, for one, am freaking out.

Things were going so well.

I finished my first draft of my outline for this year’s project, Bordertowns, over a week ago. I knew it needed revisions, but I thought the extent of it would be trimming some fatty scenes, fattening up some thin scenes, and shaking others around so they fell in a more sensible place.

That was about ten days ago. I thought I had plenty of time.


I mentioned in an earlier post that I feared my plot was running a little thin, and that I hoped to thicken it with some supplemental story lines. However, when my outline reached sixty scenes, exactly my target, I thought perhaps I was on pace after all.

Well, revising my outline has brought me to the painful realization that the scene count doesn’t matter as much when the content of those scenes is dreadfully boring. There’s really no other word for what I have right now, particularly the last half of the second act. It moves the story along in the least interesting way possible. It drags and is often redundant. Worst of all, I managed to jam pack almost every original idea I had for this story into those scenes. The entire novel hinges on them.


I’m not giving up on this project. However, the entire outline needs to be rewritten from scratch, and now I’m just looking out the calendar and sweating. I mean, I guess I’m glad I realized this before I got two thirds of the way through the draft because I just know it would be a total motivation killer. And, yeah, I could just go ahead with the outline I’ve got knowing that it will need to be completely reworked, since, what with it being a first draft and all, it would have to be rewritten anyway.

That’s my backup plan.

For now, I’ve got about a week to crank out a new outline.

The struggle continues.


3 thoughts on “Panic! At the NaNo”

    1. I’m the kind of person that looks at NaNo like… not as a set of hard and fast rules that you must abide by, but as something that is there for you to take out of it what works and is useful to you as an individual. Some people just use it to add 50k to their current project, despite having started it before the month. Others just take advantage of the community to motivate themselves to write every day, despite not having a concrete end goal. For me, I am hoping that the challenge itself, of 50k in 30 days, is what finally puts a muzzle on the inner editor which, so often is what kills projects for me. Anyway, all I’m saying is, you don’t have to pledge to follow the “rules” to the letter to take advantage of all the positives the challenge offers.

      Liked by 1 person

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