Choosing Between Challenges

This April is the A-to-Z Challenge. And it’s also one of the sessions for Camp NaNoWriMo.

A-to-Z is a blogging challenge, in which you blog all of the letters of the alphabet over the course of a month. Camp Nano is a… well, fairly open-ended challenge that spun off from National Novel Writing Month. Both are time-consuming and intense.

And I’m probably not going to be able to do both, at the moment.

I have a weird relationship with A-to-Z. On the one hand, it’s the thing that really got me into blogging regularly, and I met a lot of people while I was doing that. On the other hand… the first year I did it, my sister died during the challenge, and continuing was very much a way of having some defined and predictable activity, and space away from things to myself. I was successful, that year. All the way from A-to-Z, and then… I just kept going.

My general pattern with NaNo (both the regular thing, and the camp sessions) is that I will succeed, if I don’t feel like I’m taking time away from something else I’m more eager to do. (Specifically, whatever revision I’m on.) If my attention isn’t divided between major projects, there will generally be a rough draft at the end of the month. A good start on one, at least.

So, right now… at this moment… I’m working on a revision. I’m very close to the end, and I don’t want to stop the momentum to work on a different project. I’m hoping to be done with it soon, though, so that may not matter by April.

I have exactly zero theme for A-to-Z, but I think I meet more people there than I do at the nano camps.

On the other hand, a rough draft would keep me from going insane while I submit the current novel to agents. And true to form, I didn’t wind up with all that many words for the November NaNo last year. (The story still has potential, and I’d like to keep going with it. Yes, of course, there are sentient, cannibalistic insects. Every novel has to have a romantic subplot.)

So, if the revision is finished by then… I’m pretty much evenly divided between the two challenges. Any thoughts on which one I should do? Any thoughts on what would be a fun theme for nano? And… No. I’m just going to assume you’re completely willing to date a cannibalistic sentient insect.

What do you mean, you’re already in a relationship?

Glitches and Gloom

All said and done, this was not the most amusing computer glitch I’ve ever seen in my life. I haven’t published any posts, yet? 2016-06-07 (2)

I don’t know what caused it–maybe a little bit of a slow connection, somewhere–but the first time I saw it, I think my blood pressure spiked. And then, it went away. But… then, it came back. My posts are still here. I checked.

So, I signed up to do Camp Nanowrimo in July. And, since you can set your own goals, I’m settling for 30k. There we go. About a thousand words a day. Which, to be honest, I haven’t been hitting, lately.

If I could do that–or average that–every day for a year, that would be 365,000 words. So far, this year has been a little slow. I’ve been putting a lot of my words into blog posts, and a lot of my time into revising. More of my time into the SDJ*.

I need–or want–a new project for Camp Nano. I’m getting waaaaaaay too comfortable in my current project, and that’s when they tend to snowball out of control. No, I don’t really mean they get bigger and bigger.

When I start getting too comfortable, my new words have a way of taking on a fan-fiction-y quality, as if I’m ‘shipping my own characters from my own world. Lots and lots of unusable, unfocused tangents. Most of them don’t fall into the plot I’m going for, at all. It entertains me, but more in the way television entertains me.

It’s still a story, but it’s not my story at that point. Or maybe, it’s just too much my story. Doesn’t have to make sense to anyone else, and if I feel like undoing a bunch of timelines, they’re gone by the time my pen hits the paper.

So, yeah. I need a new project. Right now, on my nano-profile, it says the new project will be science fiction. I have a month or so to change my mind.

So, anybody else doing camp nano?

*Shitty Day Job.