Nanowrimo 2011: Week One

Promised I would report out on the Nanowrimo writing experience, so here we go. Things started out pretty effortlessly, as they often do. I had plenty of motivation and inspiration and not one bit of writer’s block, so I managed to tackle 2,000+ words a day through Sunday.

Then Monday and Tuesday kicked me off my game. Monday I became terribly distracted by a great Youtube, an internship intervew, the gym, grocery shopping and Dreamweaver homework. Yesterday was the internet, lunch with family, house cleaning and hosting MIL and BIL for dinner. Then afterwards HAD to liveblog X-Men First Class on Tumblr and Twitter. You know how it goes.

My current word total: 13,972

I find most of the writing happening during the morning hours and putting down the 2,000+ words usually takes 60-90 minutes, depending on how inspiring the passage I’m working on is.

It’s a really, really rough draft at the moment. It sort of feels like I’m writing scenes that will then have to be moved and manipulated to fit into the structure of a story. I managed to burn through about 8 pages of what has now become a prologue before I realized that it wasn’t a substantial part of the story.

It’s also from a first person perspective, and I find myself including lots of lazy/bad writing habits I’ve picked up from blogging. All those fun words and turns of phrases that make a blog sound like someone is actually speaking to you don’t carry forward in novel form so well. I’m trying really hard not to cringe or feel mournful embarrassment when I look over the pages everyday. I’ve just calmly made notes like “THIS SUCKS” and moved on.

Dan the DH has been quite helpful in being a sound board for ideas and helping me brainstorm the dystopian future and it’s technology. A lot of that isn’t fleshed out – but again, I’m trying to write and the more I get stuck on details and spin my wheels on what certain devices are called or what exactly field exercises look like, the more difficult the process becomes and I can see roadblocks slamming down all around me.

Since you’ve all waited patiently through my ramblings, here’s a special treat for you. A small snippet from the rough draft of the Nanowrimo project. 

The story revolves around an 18-year-old woman whose parents died in a terrorist bombing in Paris, France. She was horribly disfigured in said bombing and was taken in/patched up by a global corporation named Prothero. They used her as a guinea pig of sorts for some new medical technology – implanting her with an artificial heart, eye and injecting her with Nanos to speed along the organ acceptance process.

These are the first three opening paragraphs:

Paris, France was burning the first time my heart stopped beating. I don’t remember anything afterwards, but the images immediately before rise up with a disturbing visual clarity. Buildings were exploding all around us. I know we were running for the Embassy and I tripped on some damned ancient sidewalk crack and fell. Fractured my skull and lay stunned on the pavement. My parents paused and huddled over me, forming a protective cocoon of flesh around their only daughter. Blood was spilling from my head and pooling on the ground and blurring into my vision. And then the bomb went off. And then my heart stopped. And then I don’t remember anything else for the next 8 months. Until I woke up inside a Prothero skyscraper, handcuffed to a hospital bed.

The doctors said, about my amnesia “that is not unusual.” When you endure something traumatic, sometimes your brain will block out those memories. Anyway, who wants to remember when their heart stopped beating?

Up until then, my mother was a secretary at the American embassy in Paris. It seemed like every six months we were traveling somewhere new in the world where someone spoke French or Spanish or Russian. And I hated France. The people were too pretty and the language was so soft. As if everyone were speaking with a mouth full of cream. I liked the countries where the language was harsh and guttural – where they spoke fast and everyone seemed angry. In Paris, it was like a different world. The bread was warm. The grass was green. The clothes were colorful. It was too pretty and it clashed with my entire mood.

Hope you enjoyed! I am open for constructive feedback, so please drop me a line here or through email if you’d like. 


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About tinyheroes

Mindy Crouchley is a 33 year old woman with a degree in English and Technical Writing from Portland State University. She has accumulated three+ years experience in the Marketing and Communications field - with an emphasis on creating digital media content. She has been reading comic books since she was 10 years old. She currently lives in outer southeast Portland with her spouse Dan Robertson, her baby girl, and their dog - Jabba the pug. She spends her free time devouring books, crafting cosplay, video gaming, attending comic cons, writing stories/screenplays, attending book to film adaptation club meetings, volunteering, and watching copious amounts of TV and movies.

5 responses to “Nanowrimo 2011: Week One”

  1. vimax says :

    Thanks so much for posting all of the good content! I am looking forward to reading more.

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