I had a moment of What?-Am-I-CRAZY-Trying-NaNoWriMo-Again this morning. In fact, if I’d heard about PiBoIdMo just a few hours earlier than I did, I may have abandoned the whole NaNoWriMo idea altogether and signed up for PiBoIdMo instead. Even though everyone says picture books are a tough sell right now.

While I’ve been outlining and planning my YA murder mystery for the past couple of months, the book isn’t outlined or planned as well as I’d hoped it would be by now. I don’t know my characters as well as I’d hoped, either. And I’ve already discussed my letting go issues in this blog. Yet despite all that negativity, I somehow managed to write 1938 words today.

Also, something weird happened while I was writing.

I’m normally a very methodical writer. For the most part, my characters don’t talk to me…they don’t take over my plot. There’s no “magic” in writing for me…it’s just basic B.I.C. (Butt in Chair)

The hardest part of writing for me (well, after letting go) is staring at the blank screen when I’m beginning a new project. The beginning has to be just right before I can really dig in.

I had a general idea where this book was going to start. I knew what the opening scene was. But I didn’t have a good first line.

So I just started writing today. I wrote exactly 528 words of pure DRECK…when all of a sudden the perfect first line just appeared. Like magic. I think that’s what’s supposed to happen when you sign up for NaNoWriMo. It just never happened for me before because I couldn’t let go. I was also writing to contract last time…I attempted to write my Yes, I Know the Monkey Man during NaNoWriMo a few years ago…and I ended up veering from my outline so far that I felt I had to give my editor a new outline, which she didn’t like. She wanted me to go back to my old outline…and that was pretty much the end of NaNoWriMo for me.

But this time I’m not under contract. I can write whatever I want. Even if it’s crap. No one ever has to see this manuscript.

One day down, twenty-nine to go. (Or is that 1938 words down, 48,062 to go?)

I’m also determined to lose five pounds this month. That means that for every 10,000 words I write, I need to lose one pound. I wonder which is going to be easier? The 50,000 words or the 5 pounds?

NaNoWriMo Day 1

2 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo Day 1

  • November 2, 2010 at 2:06 am


    I’m glad you decided to join PiBoIdMo! Seems like NaNo will be good for you this year, too. I always admired Natalie Goldberg’s writings–how we must write every day and just keep writing, tune out that internal (and infernal!) editor. Don’t stop. NaNo was created in that spirit, and you felt it jive when that line appeared like magic. I encourage you to keep going!

    • November 2, 2010 at 4:40 pm

      Re: PiBoIdMo

      Wait…I didn’t say I WAS joining PiBoIdMo. I said I considered joining that instead of NaNoWriMo. But then the writing happened and I decided I CAN do NaNoWriMo after all.

      But I did actually come up with a picture book idea yesterday. Hmm…maybe I SHOULD consider doing both NaNoWriMo AND PiBoIdMo? Or just do IdMo…and see how many story ideas (picture book, chapter book or novel) I can generate in the month of November? One a day, right?


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