So, here I am at Camp NaNoWriMo again. Virtual birds singing in the virtual trees and—my pulse dances—a virtual werewolf behind one of those trees. My third straight year saying I wasn’t going to participate. My third straight year participating. Go figure. For some reason I seem to do better when I jump in late so I hope that holds true again this year. Last year I had low expectations and ended up writing 100K words.
For Camp this April I started prep work on the night of March 15th, but it was minimal until this week. I wrote a narrative outline of about 6,660 words and from that wrote a shorter one where I broke it up around the plot points. Too, I have a character list with a few minor details and am delving into some character sketches.
More significant are the scenes I’ve played with that have allowed me to see the characters in action. It’s one thing to know facts about characters, but it’s another to see their true selves exposed when they must make decisions. There’ve already been surprises.
And I’ve worked on all this while, as much as possible, tying up life’s loose ends. One of the more significant was reorganizing my work area at home. I’ve wanted to do it for about 18 months, but my health wouldn’t cooperate. Thanks to a new pulmonologist (he’s outstanding!) I felt well enough to try.
I make this sound like a military campaign when actually it wasn’t that big of a deal, but the small changes were desperately needed to make the space more functional. Given my lung issues I’ve long since turned to furniture that’s relatively easy for me to move around. My desk, for instance, is on casters.
What isn’t on wheels are the two bookcases. I had to unload them, which is bad news for damaged lungs that react badly to bending-straightening-bending. It’s good news for a clever writer. I transferred the books to stands and trays set at approximately the same height as the shelf they were on. It was slow, but I got it done and necessity is the mother of invention held true. The bookcases are light when empty and I only had to slide them a few feet.
True, a project that would’ve taken a couple of hours a decade ago took over six, but that’s okay. Adaptation is a virtue for my characters so why not for me? I also have no intention of making changes for several years.
And then I collapsed into my chair and sighed. Content. Ready for Camp.
I’m also ready for April (yeah, taxes are done, too). The weather is improving so I can walk and after a lengthy process I have a great pulmonologist in my corner. He likes a fighter and I’m a (quiet) fighter. There are appointments and tests scheduled, but they’re minor distractions.
So, it’s on to the actual writing in a few days and I’m excited. On the surface this is another story safely tucked into my Ontyre fantasy world, a race against the clock to stop an assassination and ignite chaos in Carrdia, but in the background is a study in gender relations and gender identity.
I go where inspiration takes me and that isn’t usually a safe place.