Take ’em to the circus!

That’s the advice that’s resonated most in these first two weeks of NaNoWriMo.  Erin Morgenstern, author of The Night Circus, advised writers to just take their characters to the circus when they appear to be getting stale.  Or boring.  Or lost.

Sounds easy enough.  Just chuck your characters into an unexpected situation.  Let ’em have some fun.

I’m finding it harder than it sounds.  Apparently, I want my characters to wander aimlessly through the forest.  And the wrong forest, at that.  However, I am writing nearly every day – something I’ve never been much good at doing.  Life always seemed to interrupt and take over.  And while I’m no longer confident that I’ll manage 50,000 words, I am confident that I can complete a first draft.  (I’m also much obliged to Susan B., who is incredibly encouraging on her blog, even if I think she’s being too hard on herself.)

But back to the circus.  I am alternating brainstorming in my notebook with typing merrily away on my keyboard, plus a healthy dose of just sitting – or walking – and thinking about my story.  I did try following along with Book in a Month, but I must admit, I’m not that diligent.  Or amenable to good direction.  Reading it was excellent preparation for NaNoWriMo, though, and I heartily recommend it.  Maybe I need to send myself to the circus, and just allow myself some more good clean fun.

The boundaries of one’s imagination are nowhere in sight.  Our only limit is ourselves.  Back to work!


3 thoughts on “Take ’em to the circus!

  1. Don’t be at all hard on yourself! Any NaNoWriMo writers I’ve spoken to are all behind! (I’m not doing it.) What’s good is that you’re writing 🙂

  2. I agree with Donna Marie. Most people probably don’t meet the NaNo goal and some never intend to. They’re just using it as incentive. Don’t judge your progress on word count. One great page trumps 1000 unecessary words.

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