novel infidelity (nanowrimo, and that next thing…)

There are fifty-one days between today and National Novel Writing Month 2009.

One month and twenty one days. Seven weeks and two days. Fifty-one days. Thirty-five weekdays. One month, twenty days, thirteen hours, ten minutes until the starting gun at midnight (from the time of writing).

I’ve got forty percent of Blue Crystal to revise still (though chapter eight is getting a major face lift at present). One chapter fixed a week (optimistic, as I’ve got the teaching job going again) means that it’ll take another five to six weeks to finish revisions. That last one or two weeks for polishing just might not be enough time to really finish final polishes, and I’d hoped to start agent searching before NaNo starts.

Why?

I’ve got a really, really fun story in mind to start on next.

Back two years ago, when I started Blue Crystal in NaNo 2007, this was actually my second idea for the fall project. My first choice was this yet immature idea, at the time a co-written sort of idea/plot that I just didn’t think was ready for a 50k marathon. Now, after two years of mulling in the back of my head, a go-ahead from my former partner to change, develop, and write the story without him, I’m more than ready to get started. It has everything that Blue Crystal doesn’t. Mad scientists, an awesome villain (he rams a screwdriver through his head in his first scene), an understated romance, and a sunny, Victorian-esc setting with a steampunk flair.

NaNoWriMo does something to me. I’ve participated twice (once on Blue Crystal’s first draft, then in ’08 with Blue Crystal’s third as a blind rewrite), and I’ve won both times. Before I started NaNo, I’d difficulty finishing anything. So here’s the problem: do I set Blue Crystal’s last changes aside and concentrate on the new thing knowing that a short attention span is my biggest writing weakness, or do I go full-bore and wear myself out literary-wise before November comes around? Or should I be prepared for both and see how things go?

It’s getting awfully hard to concentrate.

three steps forward…

… Then a shepherd’s crook about the neck from off-stage, Bugs Bunny style. Yoink!

I’ve been working on my revisions (and not posting so much, admittedly… but the deeper I go into the actual writing/editing of the book, I find I have less and less to say here). Chapters one through three have been revised, fixed up, polished (and chapter one and two sent off to my test readers).

Chapter one was unavoidably awkward in spots, a lot of world building and introductions very quickly, and chapter two extended that, but with plot. Chapter three was a dream: varied, interesting, fast paced.

And then I reached chapter four.

I don’t see any way around it. I’m going to have to rewrite most of this from scratch. Fifteen pages or so, 8-9k. Flat characters, dallying plot, and… well, let’s call it ‘plodding’. Trudging through to the interesting parts. This might take a bit longer than I thought.