I am just about 12,000 words into ELEGY! My NaNoWriMo muscle hasn't been flexed in some time (since November 2009, to be exact), so I've been taking it easy. When I run, I don't hit my stride until about halfway through, and I must have the same pattern when it comes to writing!
I'm glad I decided to do the August version of NaNo this year. November's always a crazy month! August also has an extra day... which I guess I've already taken advantage of since I didn't write on Saturday *blush*
The story has changed a LOT since Day One in terms of my character Ralph's motivation. I don't want to give away too much, but basically, in 1880 he is rescued from a horrible existence by one of the wealthiest men in Paris and introduced to a fierce rivalry - both musical and romantic - with the man's son, Henri.
The novel focuses on their struggle as they grow up, and their fates are tied to the violin, but I couldn't figure out how I was going to take them there until I actually started writing.
This is when my excessive plotting can't help, because you don't really know your characters until you "meet" them on the page. I knew that Ralph was going to be my catalyst for introducing the violin and starting its cycle of destruction, but I didn't understand how profound his motivation was until I wrote his death scene (no spoiler, he dies right in the prologue) and his last words just came out, completely unplanned.
I love when that happens! And yes, I realize that I sound like a crazy person to anyone who doesn't write. (Maybe even to people who do write, but it's okay.)
I ended up scrapping the first 5,000 words and rewriting in a whole new direction. I'm also jumping heads and decades, writing from the third-person perspective of multiple people in 1880-1900 and the modern day. It's challenging and fun to try to make the transitions as smooth and natural as possible. We'll see if my CPs/readers feel the same way next month...
FOREST OF A THOUSAND LANTERNS (FOTL) (Novel, YA Epic Fantasy) An exiled princess searches for the five elements she needs to win the allegiance of the dragons and reclaim her kingdom from the grasp of an evil empress.