I am participating in #NaNoWriMo for the first time

and really loving it. I’ve always written first drafts quickly, but I’ve never taken part in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month, where writers, pre-published and published, try to write a 50,000-word novel–or longer–in a month. I’m glad I’m taking part this year.

I’d forgotten the joy that comes from writing a first draft (I’ve been editing two other books I’ve written, lately). I love writing quickly. I think writing quickly is part of what gets me past the editor in me. While editing is necessary, I think it’s best to come in during the second and further drafts.

I did plan out my book first (using The Anatomy of Story by John Truby, as I always do), so I know the direction I’m going, but I love discovering new things about my characters or a new plot twist or point as I write.

I’m writing about ten pages a day–by hand. I write (and edit) all my books by hand; it feels the most connected to my creativity and inner voice. I’ve been trying to cram writing this new book and then typing it up into each day, but I’m behind in typing it up (and trying to pace myself so I don’t burn myself out). So my updates on how much I’ve written are about four or five days behind on NaNoWriMo. I’m glad people understand that some of us write by hand! (And all this while I’m sick–but I’m having fun!)

I am writing a YA paranormal fantasy set in my HUNTED world, about Gemma, a queer black telekenetic girl who has been sucked into all the anti-Para messages that are constantly being spewed at her–through school, her home and neighborhood, her community, and the media, the church, and the government. This is about a girl who starts out hating herself–because after all she IS a Para, and her own mother abandoned her because of it–but in the end she discovers she’s stronger and better than she realizes. It’s about a girl who’s bought into the oppressive messages in society and is forced to unravel them. A girl who has the family and love she’s always craved, but just hasn’t seen it yet. A girl who, in the end, will have to save herself. It will be a stand-alone fantasy, but it will have some mentions of characters from HUNTED for those readers who loved HUNTED.

If you’d like to connect with me on the NaNoWriMo website, I’m here: http://nanowrimo.org/participants/cherylrainfield/novels/endangered-642915/

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