The month of April, admittedly, took me by surprise. I had grand plans to write every day for Camp NaNoWriMo, but then…life happened. I am disappointed that I did not reach my word count goal, but I did complete a short story I am proud of (and isn’t the whole point to get something on the page?). I will also admit that I did not leave my novel untouched for the entire month. I opened that document because I just can’t stay away from the story.
Nevertheless, I like the short story I did come up with. It is a genre I have never dipped my toes into before, and I was feeling very inspired by Edgar Allan Poe, whose work has always intrigued me. The story is creepy, dark, and went places I didn’t know I was capable of traveling to as a writer. The first major difference to any of my other work is that the voice is a male. His name is Harvey, if you are interested. I tried to put myself in a character with whom I do not immediately, on-the-surface connect with — male, mid-thirties, British, and a psychopath. I was surprised at how easily Harvey came to the page, despite me having no direction or plan when I opened the blank document. It was another piece of writing that didn’t give me any answers until I had actually written them, which I am realizing is my favorite thing about fiction. It is surprising to everyone, especially the author.
In that sense, I consider Camp NaNoWriMo a success. It was not the overwhelming, waterfall-rushing, powerful experience of November when I finished the first draft of a novel, but this was a good exercise to put me out of my comfort zone.
For now, I am very excited for the summer to begin and for more time away from a busy schedule. Summer, I think, will be about reading new books, writing blog posts, and filling empty pages with potential. And sangria — definitely sangria.