Every year I've looked at this NaNoWriMo thing and thought, why does it have to be in November? Why not NaJaWriMo or NaFeWriMo -- months when I'm not marking. Last year I spent most of November wrestling with writes and rewrites (students') of Liberal Arts essays. I felt like my head was going to explode. This year I wasn't teaching over there -- our semester ends earlier and mine earlier still because of the Cup Day holiday, and so I really had no excuse.
I was 50 k from the end of my novel (in the rewrite) and it's a 50 k commitment, so I thought, why not? Except when I read the rules it's not supposed to be stuff you're rewriting. Originally, I thought that it didn't matter. After all, if it's my NaNoWriMo, it could be whatever I wanted, right? Right. Except that when I read the reasoning why it shouldn't be a rewrite, I thought they made a good point. So I decided to head into book 2. Now, technically, this is also a rewrite because I'm already 140 k into book 2; however, I haven't worked on it for a very long time and don't remember the ins and outs. Plus I wrote a lot of it so long ago that it needs to be partly rewritten, so I decided to tackle this and do it from scratch.
Now, this was the perfect project for my long weekend away, and boy did I make a great start at it. But I still wanted to be working on my novel too, so it became a juggling act. Normally, I can't work on more than one thing at a time, but these are both the same world and characters -- same headspace -- though there is this curious experience of writing 50 k to the end, and 50 starting at the end. Bizarre. And in book 1, I'm working on two storylines simultaneously: human and Myrad (alien), whereas for NaNoWriMo, I've restricted myself to just writing the one (Myrad).
But now I'm stuck. I was referring back to the original book 2 far more than I wanted to -- but, in any case, I've introduced a major new storyline that affects this storyline dramatically so things were about to diverge radically from what I had. I think for me that really what is needed is an hour of plotting. Sometimes, I like to write without plotting, just see where it goes, but sometimes I need more structure. I suspect this might be one of those times. Today, I'm going to spend half an hour plotting and then some time writing. I'll report back in later to say how I've done!