NaNoWriMo, Writing Process

Two Parts Outline, One Part Pantsing

After finishing Reverie I took a little break from writing to pursue some other hobbies and relax.  After a month and a half… I miss writing.  When I was working on Reverie, I wasn’t sure I would be able to stick with it long enough to finish it or would I get distracted by something shiny in the distance.  Now that I know for sure that I can finish a book, I am thinking up new ideas for books all the time.  My plan was to work on Dissonance (the prequel to Reverie) as my next project, but as plans tend to happen around me, they got derailed.

outlineNext month as we all know is NaNoWriMo, and I have been busy plotting away.  I have a love-hate relationship with NaNo, but I am crawling back to it again this year.  (I think there needs to be an NaNoWriMo Anonymous Group to help addicts like myself (that claim they hate the process, but keep going back) kick the habit once and for all!)  I decided this year I would attempt a few changes to my writing process.  I figured NaNoWriMo was the perfect time to experiment with my writing style, structure and genres.  Normally I pants it with a dash of outlining.  This year for my NaNo novel I am starting with an outline, something in the past four years of participating I have never done.  I have started using Ms OneNote solely for outlining and organization.  I have pages for characters, main plot and then a tab for each chapter, including which characters play a part, the setting and an outline for what is to occur in each chapter.  Once I start writing I will start adding scene ideas as they come to me.  I have a habit of writing out of order and piecing it together.

This new book tentatively title “The Bounty”is a dystopian post apocalyptic story about a bounty hunter.  I have never written in the science fiction genre and it will be a great change.  I am wanting to broaden my writing comfort zone and try new things, much like I love trying new restaurants and going places I have never been.  I am also changing perspective from first person narration to third person.  I have a bit of difficulty with third person, but the direction this outline is starting to take this story begs to be told in third person.

I like writing an occasional note, but outlining the entire process is a new concept to me.   So I am combining the outline and pantsing and making a skeleton outline of the book then going back to pantsing it.  I will be willing to let the story grow organically and not worry if I stray from the outline.  I just want to tell the story that is still forming, rather slowly, in my head.I realize all the changes I am making to my writing process will probably spell failure in the world of NaNoWriMo, but luckily my goal isn’t writing 50,000 words!

 

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