Journal Keeping and Stunt Noveling

Wow, long time no post. I guess my excuse is that I’ve just moved to a new place and that I’ve been spending my time settling in and getting to know the area. However, I suspect by some point saying that I’m “new” will become silly. Exactly how long does it take to live in one place until people consider you truly a resident? The line is probably a very fuzzy one. In a large city, most people probably don’t really care because everyone’s coming and going. In a tiny rural town entrenched with families that go back for generations, I’m sure I’d always feel out of place no matter how long I lived there.

It’s been a while since I’ve regularly kept a handwritten journal. The last time I remember being fairly diligent about it was my first year in college. And then after that, I found blogs. I’ve started regularly writing in a journal again since I’ve moved to San Diego. But when I say “regularly”, I mostly mean weekends. (I feel like my lab notebook is already an adequate chronicle for what I do during the work week.) The journal isn’t really introspective, though. Instead, I’m noting down the places I go and the things I see. I guess it’s more like a bucket list in journal form, but it’s not really a bucket list. There isn’t really anything that I consider a must-see. I just want to remember where I went before so if some place is egregiously bad, I won’t accidentally go back again.

* * *

NaNoWriMo is fast approaching again. And I don’t really have a set idea on what to write about. I’m thinking this year, unless a plot and/or character comes up between now and November that I simply cannot ignore, I’ll pants the novel. In other words, write with no planning. This could be awesome or terrible. Who knows? But I suppose that’s part of the excitement.

Meanwhile here are some random ideas that I’ve come up with in the past month:

  • A maple syrup crime story.
  • A steampunk version of Alice in Wonderland.
  • The amnesiac duke’s alien mistress (an alien abduction regency).
  • Something written entirely in second person.

I’m also considering live writing the novel. In other words, writing on a public viewable document like Google Docs where everyone can see me typing out the story in real time. I could even enable comments so people could lob virtual tomatoes at me in real time, too. I’m not breaking any new ground–several other people have done this before–but this would be something that would make NaNoWriMo extra challenging (and extra terrifying) after the many years I’ve participated in it.

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