For Lack of a Plan

The decision has been made: NaNoWriMo will be attempted by this camper.

But perhaps not in true Sarah-fashion.

In NaNoWriMo there are many horror stories of people walking into November with no plan, no outline, no plot. They go into it with nothing. And many crash halfway through the month because they don’t know where to go next, they can’t find a way out of the web they’ve created, the story doesn’t have enough conflict or characters or subplots. Whatever the reason, NaNoWriMo isn’t a success and they give up.

And yet, at this stage I am content in attempting NaNoWriMo with no plan.

I’ve been so immersed in my current novel (which is now complete) and in sticking to it’s outline that I’ve forgotten what it is to write without an ending in mind. I’ve forgotten what it is to write a fresh scene without knowing exactly where it’s headed. I’ve forgotten what it is to have a character surprise you, and take you somewhere you didn’t have in mind.

The past few days I’ve been playing around with a new novel idea. Only, I have no novel idea. I’ve simply got a word document filled with a few paragraphs, containing a couple of characters doing random things. There is no plan, no end result. I’m simply writing with the flow, seeing where my characters go. Maybe these paragraphs will result in a novel or maybe they won’t.

Whatever they become, I’m happy.

For the next few months, I’m happy to just write and see if a plot forms. If it doesn’t, I’ll crawl my way through NaNoWriMo and see if I crash and burn. If a novel does start to appear, I’ll outline. Right now I simply don’t mind what happens.

NaNoWriMo, to me, isn’t about ‘winning’. I don’t mind if I get the 50,000 words and a winner badge. I want to write because I enjoy it and NaNo is a great motivator. It’s brilliant at helping you set goals and stick to them, and be encouraged by fellow authors. But success shouldn’t only be in ‘winning’, but found in the fact you tried.

Some weird things have been written today, but nothing unpleasant, which is always a positive. The freedom in writing rather aimlessly feels good, and I’m content to float for now.

Sarah xx

One thought on “For Lack of a Plan

  1. Hi fellow lack of plan-er! I’m going into NaNo hoping to write everyday for the fun of it. I’m not expecting to have much that will live outside the notebook where it will be written, but I’m going to try to enjoy every day of it anyway! Good luck to you!

    Liked by 1 person

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