Report: NaNoWriMo 2010

Header Robin

This year, I continued working on the same story I have been writing for the last two Novembers. I had plans – well, vague aspirations – of finishing it this year. At a little over 67,000 words, I am nowhere near that point.

I’m hitting my stride more this year than I was last year. The first year was all very merry, under-the-greenwood-tree, and a lot of fun, but it was also the beginning. Last year was hard – a dry, too-real, unpleasant, storyless artificial wasteland, much like the setting. This year is all stories, tales-within-tales, wolves and mirror-eyed strangers, houses with roofs that ruffle softly in the breeze, gilt-paper stars, borrowed coats, belled riders and red-eared hounds. The next stage – I don’t know yet, but I think it will be sacrifice, and overcompensation, and hard lessons (but I’m not making any promises).

I suspect that, with all I have learned, I could plan a story and write it. Making this up as I go along is going to be harder in the long run, if I decide there is something salvageable in this great mass of words. But it is enormous fun, as well – amusing myself, surprising myself, occasionally startling myself.

Working title: A Golden Arrow

Appropriateness of working title: Minimal.

First line: The night before this story ended, before the world slipped away –

Middle line: “-a fine hunt, had I not seen the forest lord-” (that followed by laughter)

Last line: She wished for the stone she had lost on the road.

Things introduced which will cause me difficulties later: Fitzroi’s Theory of Sparrows; 2 leaves; 2 chickens; the rise and fall of the Roman Empire; bloody dog; wooden child; shot-gun approach to adjectives.

Titles of tales-within-the-tale (i.e. ones the main characters aren’t actively participating in during the main chronology):

  • Silence and Nettles (pretty much a straight retelling)
  • The Sparrow-Wife
  • The House in the Woods
  • The King’s Heart
  • The Swan-White Harp
  • The Nursemaid’s Tale
  • Red-coat and that Wolf, the Wind
  • The Man who would Sleep Alone
  • Fitzroi’s Theory of Sparrows

It’s a stretch to call that last one a story. But I wish it was, just so I could extract it and use that title.

8 thoughts on “Report: NaNoWriMo 2010

  1. I’d love to read more…so have you read The Mabinogen? Or the Mythago Wood Series by Robert Holdstock? The one by him I just finished, Gate of Ivory, Gate of Horn, is all about the flowering of story.

  2. Yeah, the possibility of a Fitzroi’s The Theory of Sparrows straightaway jerked my curiosity string, too.

    Having that last line is going to be very useful. It would be for me. Something to work towards and then, finish.

    Your approach to adjectives … it’s your first draft, isn’t it? Adjectives are like a short hand to tell yourself to either rephrase or cut it. Not all adjectives are supernumerary.

    • I do like it as a title! Thanks for the interest!

      My November Theory of Adjectives is that if I throw enough of them at the page, the right one is likely to be in there somewhere.

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