Monday, November 07, 2011

It's NaNo Time!

It's November. What does that mean? It's NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month. For the month of November, writers all over the world channel their enthusiasm and talent (and a little insanity) and challenge themselves to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days.

This is my fifth NaNo. Each year I've been a winner - in other words, I finished my novel in 30 days or less. I love doing NaNoWriMo. It's great to challenge myself to write. If I win, I have the satisfaction of a completed novel. If I don't finish, at least I set the goal for myself and can finish it another time. No one stands over me with a whip forcing me to write. The only timetable is self-imposed. The only thing I have to do is find the time to write.

Each year, I've tried to find a new novel that inspired me. Each year, I've been surprised at what I've written.

My first year, I wrote a prequel to my science fiction series. "Wall of Time" traces the life of one of the main characters in the "Lone Wolf" series. A seemingly minor character in the first book, by book three "The Maker", she's a main mover and shaker.

My second year of NaNo, I started with the premise: If you were stranded on a desert island, who would you like it to be? "Deserted" went a very different direction from what I'd anticipated, but I'm still proud of it.

Third year, "The Ninja Tattoo" was born. This story was inspired by something which actually happened to me. It was such an odd circumstance, I felt compelled to write about it. This story also went in a very different direction from what I anticipated.

Last year, I wrote "Undiscovered". This novel was inspired by a segment of a dream my friend Mickey Hoffman told me about. A young woman was showing a condo room and witnessed a crime, thus putting her in danger. From that, my story grew, taking me in yet another direction.

This year's story, also inspired by real life, is called "Full Measure". Someone is embezzling from The Breakwater Clinic and it's up to unprepossessing Daphne Winstead to discover who, how and why. Reluctantly accepting the help of Ralan Hendrix, she follows the leads. Will she be able to find the answers before they silence her? Currently 21, 180 words into the story, I'm pretty pleased with it. But once again, I find it going in a very strange direction.

If there's one thing that writing has taught me, it's that every story has its own way that it wants to be told. No matter how an author wishes to impose their will, eventually, the story will take over, the characters develop free will and then it is, as they say, "All She Wrote"

To find out more about National Novel Writing Month, check out

1 comment:

Una Tiers said...

Hi Dellani:
Your tenacity is impressive. Thanks for friending me.
Una Tiers

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