distraction no.99

Nova Ren Suma | On Writing & Writing Distractions

Not an Author Newsletter… something else.

The Giddy Stage

I’m at that point when you’re writing a novel when you’re not even actually writing the novel but still you think you’re gold. You know: The ideas shimmering… Your words poised to come out… Not a single line on the page, but the whole thing seems finished somehow, in your mind.

I bet there are tens of thousands of writers out there having this feeling, what with NaNoWriMo speedily approaching.

This morning before work I got a more solid handle on my idea and started outlining. Then at work I got swallowed and forgot all about the idea, and I only remembered on the subway ride home. And giddiness ensued:


I was so giddy, I had to write it down on the train. To translate:

I found the November novel this morning. ‘[Title blurred due to superstition]’ is the working title. [Initials of the working title blurred due to further (perhaps paranoid?) superstition]… don’t want to talk too much about it in front of people. I don’t want it to get ruined. But it has my idea for ‘[Title of short story, blurred, of course]’ and expands on it (maybe one chapter could become a story?). Also has the idea for the novel, the [name of place] novel, but I am not going in that direction (adding the adult perspective) yet. If you are wondering [who am I talking to here? my future self?] why my handwriting is all goofy it’s because I’m writing this on the subway. While riding backwards. (Plus my fingers are tired from work, my palms aching from being clenched.) [It’s from holding a pencil. Really.] I love going alongside another train. So this novel, YA or not? I am not sure yet. The end will differ, depending. The perspective. The length. I am almost home. I need to keep outlining. I am going to write a new novel! (shaky train)

Oh, and if you were curious, the outside of the notebook looks like this:


How delectable. It wants to be filled with wobbly, giddy scribbles. Maybe that’ll happen next month.

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13 responses to “The Giddy Stage”

  1. I love seeing this page, glimpsing into your day and your mind. Love it. And I totally deciphered a word. (The place name, of course.)

  2. Thanks for posting this page from your notebook, I love to see how writers get excited about a new project (and also the little, ah, distractions and sidebars that find their way into the body of the outline). And what a gorgeous notebook— it’s inspired me to dig out one of my blank ones from home and use it for NaNo. Whee!

  3. Wanted to spread some more giddiness: I just suspended my cable and Internet services for all of November. Holy sh*t!

    Good luck, everybody!

  4. w: That is some serious dedication. Should I do the same? CAN I do the same? … Must think more on this.

    I’m excited so many people are doing this. I really think it will be great fun!

  5. Beautiful notebook.

    I’m going to wing it, too. Not much other choice… I haven’t even started outlining. Argh. Double argh.

  6. Ooh, lovely lovely notebook! So cool! That gives me the vibes. I like your handwriting too. I’m looking at my own notebook sitting here open in front of me and I’ve put the date at the top, 25/10 – I love knowing that someone else out there is doing something the same as me.

  7. The Giddy Stage is the best. And that notebook is AWESOME. I love all the superstitiously blurred parts. What is it about writing that breeds such superstition?! I can’t even say full character names out loud without feeling doomed, somehow.

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