I have spent the better part of the last three months split between adjusting to a new life in Orlando with my fiancee and editing The Agency novelization for Think Alike Productions. Put aside during that span were any original words. The Hex manuscript has been in a drawer, the files for The Registry untouched despite world events bringing a new sense of immediacy to that concept. Everything on hold.
Something had to give. Finally, I got my push, in the form of an e-mail from the folks at the Office of Lights and Letters. This is the group that conducts the annual National Novel Writing Month in November, the event that launched my writing career.
Would I be participating in Camp Nanowrimo?
It seems that twice a year, in April and July, they conduct a “mini” Wri-Mo, again designed to stimulate (or goad) the creative juices. Only, unlike the November event, this had a broader reach. You set your own word goal, or you could instead choose to do poetry, or art, etc. In addition, you could choose to be in a cabin, with other writers, to share ideas, ask questions, etc. The whole summer camp theme, just without the lanyard making and smores.
I needed the creative boost. This came at just the right time. So on an impulse, I joined.
Two days before the start (April 1).
So now it’s March 30. I have a little less than forty hours to figure out what to write.
I’ve never gone into a Wrimo blind. I always have some sort of outline, characters defined, a purpose, something. This time I had a blank screen.
Over my shoulder, Maya from Hex wandered in and looked at it. “That’s quite a pickle you’ve got there.”
“You’re telling me.”
I could feel her smile grow behind me. “I think that’s your job. By Bishop’s beard, why are you making this so hard on yourself?”
I turned around to look back. “I’m not–“
She wasn’t there. But something was.
By Bishop’s beard.
Throughout Hex I used the name of this guy Bishop as an exclamation like it was some holy writ. But it never gets explained where it came from.
I don’t necessarily need the story for the real world. But Hex is planned as a series. Knowing who Bishop is, and how his story ties to this world will help me write it going forward.
So now I have the idea. How Bishop somehow comes from whatever world he was in to the world of Hex. Still no cast of characters, timeline, or plot. Those will have to be built on the fly. But it’s a start.
Let the games begin.