Rolling along with NaNoWriMo writing — I’m at 45,221 words! This middle part has been much slower than the beginning, when I blazed through many scenes. I’m grateful for that strong start, as it helped with the slower days in the middle.
A couple of things have helped my recent writing: I followed the advice of a NaNo tip to try writing about a secondary character. And it worked very well — the few scenes with just secondary characters add a bit of depth to the story (a horror novel). I think some of these scenes go toward helping mold the character of the protagonist. Another piece of advice I’ve seen is that if readers don’t care about the protagonist, they won’t care about the story. Makes sense to me, because if you’re not keen on the main character, then you’re not invested in what happens to him or her. So, I like how different perspectives from secondary characters have added to the main character.
Something else that’s helped me in this middle period is research. I’ve done lots of reading on Wikipedia (got to love all those links) about the mythology of vampires and other creatures. And about the history of Eastern Europe. Some items from that research have clicked very well with my story, and there have been times I’ve thought, “I’ve got to add that… and that… and that.” History is ripe with stories that can be used as inspiration. Many of those stories fit very nicely with the patterns that have been rising from my novel as I get further along in it.
A sample from my writing this past week:
Thankfully, there was Patrik. He was younger and more inclined to reading than playing sports. But Marcell had persuaded him to act out stories, to let the stories lift off the pages of the books and inhabit them. This lit a fire within Patrik, and he was a more than willing participant. So the two of them could be seen around town, running with wooden swords or toy guns or some such prop that was part of the story they were acting out.
Best of luck to the NaNo writers and other writers out there!