NaNoWriMo: Day 19

Well. That was certainly a strange evening.

So after not getting much done Tuesday night, despite having a write-in, I’d hoped Wednesday (which was day 19) would go better. For much of the day, it seemed like this probably wouldn’t be the case. I didn’t feel well the whole time I was at work, and after getting home and eating dinner, I kind of crashed and mostly slept from 8PM until after 11. Still feeling strange, I woke up, took care of a couple things around the apartment, and sat down at my computer. I was tired and still didn’t feel good, but was suddenly feeling determined to try and break through the writer’s block I was feeling. I didn’t care what story it was or even what the writing itself was about, I wanted to write something. Nine times out of ten, feeling especially tired or sick (let alone both) is a recipe for disaster when it comes to trying to write anything. But, in this particular case, I cannot say for certain that what I ended up being able to accomplish wasn’t at least in some small part helped by being in a state of near delirium for most of the night.

I recalled a piece of advice that I first heard ages ago, and have heard reiterated, sometimes with slight variants, several times since. It’s a sort of Nano axiom given in partial seriousness, obviously meant to be humorous but surprisingly applicable at times. “If you’re stuck, then it’s a good time to have someone die, or to have an alien invasion suddenly occur, or to just add some smut.”

Being that I ended up writing for SA, a modern day slice of life story with no aliens and where there aren’t many opportunities for characters to die, you can guess where that went. I thought, what the hell, I’ve never actually tried to just do that in the middle of a story or battle with writer’s block, so I did. And it worked! I wrote a total of 5,281 words!

Now, that wasn’t all sexy times – just over half of it, roughly. The rest was just… stuff. I had a sequence where my two main characters are on a trip (to Valocea, in fact) with two of their friends. At one point, they are in a hotel room at night, not going to bed yet but with nothing else really happening. So I wrote about the exciting details of getting ready for bed, I wrote about a couple of them looking up further information for their trip on laptops, I wrote about some tidbits of information about Valocea itself that the one character out of the four who originally grew up there can impart to the others, and somehow that conversation ended up moving to a discussion about bras. Yes, bras – all four characters are women, so it’s not as odd as it might sound, but still, I looked back on it later and it was like, wait what, why…

But hey, whatever! It worked! That’s Nano. That’s what makes it fun! Sometimes you don’t know what you’re going to write, sometimes you haven’t the faintest IDEA what it will be, and then you write it anyway. And only after you’ve written it out do you get to go back and see what it was that you wrote. It’s crazy sometimes, but in a good way. Of course, not everything written in that fashion is actually good; some of it just needs editing, but some things written during Nano are just too wacko to include in a final manuscript, no matter how much you try to polish them.

With that in mind: will any of the material I wrote last night stay in the “real” story? Well, a question that must first be asked is: will I ever even want to try and pursue publishing any of the SA stuff? And I still don’t know the answer to that. It still feels like something I might not want to share, except with close friends. Only if I changed my mind on that point would I then try to worry about the implications of not only general editing and having to decide if the bra talk should stay, but also, the question of whether the full-blown, explicit, forgot-to-fade-to-black sex scene would stay. So I’m not too worried about that for the moment.

With that sudden writing burst, I’m at 36,169 total, which means I’m ahead once again. So if I take another night off, I’ll still be ok. Not that I want to be too lax about it, but tonight has been pretty unproductive so far. I’m still not feeling well but I can’t guarantee that will lead to unexpected sexy shenanigans for two nights in a row (wow that sounds even more lewd than it already is if you don’t know I’m talking about writing), so we’ll see. Definitely want to try and get back to writing more this weekend, though, with or without the addition of more smut, or perhaps a follow-up conversation about panties.

-Saito S

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