Welcome to April, and… the start of Camp NaNoWriMo 2016!
I decided to take on Camp Nano this year for the very first time. Though I’m an old NaNo pro, I’m excited to be doing a new challenge, and at a time of year when I might be able to get some work done while sitting on a blanket in the grass beneath the warm sunshine… which is slightly optimistic given the Pacific Northwest springtime rainy season, but… never stop dreaming!
If you’re not familiar with Camp Nano, it’s put on by the same folks who bring us National Novel Writing Month every November. But rather than being supplied with a writing goal (a 50,000 word novel in 30 days), you get to choose your own goal, plus you can join private cabins where you and eleven other Nano-ers can root each other on.
My Camp Nano Goal: To complete an outline for the first book of my Gatlon (superheroes) trilogy, knock out a bunch of early research, and compile character and setting sketches for all three books.
If you’ve been following me for a while, you might be thinking… ummmm, didn’t you already write the first book of the Heroes trilogy…?
To which I would say: Hush up, you stalker!
I would actually say: Yes, indeed! I wrote a draft of this book during NaNoWriMo 2014 (holy cow, where does the time go?) – but then I got caught up in finishing Winter, Stars Above, Heartless, and two graphic novel scripts, and when I went back to review the draft I wrote all those months ago… I was supremely dissatisfied.
Which is neither uncommon nor unexpected. In fact, this has happened with the first draft of just about every book I’ve written, and I’m beginning to realize it just might be the way my brain functions. At least I know I’m not alone, given how many writers talk about scrapping their first drafts and starting from scratch on a regular basis!
I never think of these first drafts as wasted, though. For me, that first non-draft has to happen before you can move on to the first real draft. It’s like, your brain is cluttered with all the boring, cliché, and expected ideas and you need to scrape off that layer of drivel before you can get to the goldmine underneath.
And now it’s time to roll up my sleeves, grab my shovel, and start digging up the real story.
Huh… that’s actually not a bad analogy.
Anyway, so I’m back at square one, but I’m also excited to dive back into this world and start molding it into the awesome trilogy I believe it can be.
Wish me luck this month! Or better yet, wish me plenty of inspired, lightning-bolt ideas…
Are you doing Camp Nano this month? Feel free to post about your April goal or root each other on in the comments. And though I already have a cabin, feel free to use this blog post to seek out Lunartic cabin mates for yourself!