Countdown to a novel

This week I’m on my final countdown to the 1st of June, when I will join Camp NaNoWriMo and attempt to write the next novel in the Pitkirtly mystery series. I imagine the week will go something like this:

5 (today, Sunday 27th May)

Panic about not knowing where to start – try and think this through while knitting, lose place and have to start unravelling.

Scribble furiously in notebook until page resembles unravelled knitting, with many lines leading across the page, crossed out sections, exclamation marks and asterisks.

Panic about not having good enough title. Spend 2 hours browsing online for suitable winter quotes.

Have brainwave about plot while cooking evening meal – rush to write it in notebook, scribble away until interrupted by smoke alarm, smell of burning.

4 (Monday, 28th May)

Brain numbed by having to go to work.

Have no ideas until watching television late in evening – get sudden burst of ideas about this novel, the next one and a short story I didn’t know I was going to write.

Scribble in notebook for a while. Brain over-stimulated – can’t get to sleep.

(Tuesday, 29th May)

I’ve got to work out where to start!

Go for walk at lunchtime to get brain in gear. Spend afternoon thinking about plot outline and realise have been muttering to self at desk. Oh well, colleagues think me peculiar anyway since I revealed writing career.

2 (Wednesday, 30th May)

Wake up with the firm conviction I know where to start. Write it down in notebook.

Review notes at lunchtime and decide I’m starting in the wrong place. Cross it all out.

Review again during evening and attempt to uncross crossings-out. Start a new page in notebook – freaked out by blankness of page.

1 (Thursday, 31st May)

Write summary of plot and short description of chapters 1-5 in notebook – where did that come from?

Think about first sentence in my head but I can’t write it down until tomorrow because that would be cheating. Panic in case I forget it overnight.

Panic in case the magic of NaNoWriMo doesn’t work and I can’t get the novel finished.


0 – do we have lift-off?

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