Wednesday, November 11, 2015

NaNo-ing Character Arcs...and a Pep Talk

To read the full Stephanie Perkins pep talk at NaNoWriMo's website, go here.

Since today is Veterans Day, I've decided to kick off this post by saying "Thank You" to all the veterans out there. There are no classes today, so MiniBeast is home with me. I rolled out of bed a little early to get a head start on motherly and household things, as well as writing, so here it goes.

I crossed the 13k threshold on my NaNoWriMo project last night. Or was it this morning? It depends on which side of midnight it was before I hit the bed. I can't remember exactly. While writing last night, I got to a stuck point, didn't know how to proceed, and thereafter in the flurry of post-it note that followed, I lost track of time. 

To break out of the stuck point, and to generate some usable words, I took out some sticky notes in different colors and began breaking down the story in my head by mapping everyone's character arc. 

Lemme just say that I didn't realize at first how many characters are in the book. Another thing I didn't realize was just how many words this would generate. About 2k so far, just for the arcs once I transferred all of it to my story file. 

I still need to map two more main characters, which I plan to do today. I'm going to get those out of the way first thing since those characters are the main reason I'm stuck.

In the process of jotting down all the character arcs, I managed to come up with a suitable ending for the novel, and there are a lot of other little detail oriented bits I was able to elaborate on and connect to other characters arcs. It was a little like playing connect the dots, I guess, only with multiple character scenarios. 

Another thing while breaking the book down by individual arcs, I was also able to look at every character's core purpose for being in the story, both the main players and the tertiary folks, to better justify why each person is being included in the book. If someone's reason for being there is/was looking kind of thin, I could easily beef it up and knit in more connections to the other characters. I've beefed up two characters so far, and both times, doing so added another layer of complexity to the story. Cool beans. I'll take it. 

So that's what cooking over here. Today's meme blog graphic thing comes from yesterday's NaNoWriMo pep talk. I loved it so much I had to share the good news. To read the Stephanie Perkins pep talk in full, you can find it right here on the NaNoWriMo website.

That's all for now. I'll post again when things get interesting. In the meantime, keep writing...and happy wishes! ♥ 

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