NaNoWriMo 2020 Ramblings #1

Nov 9, 2020

Day 3 of 100 Days to Offload

I’m stuck. I decided to do NaNoWriMo this year, just so I could get my creative juices running through my brain again. I’ve had a story in my mind whirling through my head since earlier this year (around February 2020).

I stumbled upon David Foster Wallace, by accident, on YouTube. I watched an interview of his and was weirdly awestruck. I’ve always been drawn to thinkers (maybe because I try to compensate for my own lack of intelligence) so it was no surprise to me that I was immediately smitten. Almost immediately I got my hands onto one of his books: Infinite Jest. As some may know (if you follow my blog), reading often sparks ideas in my mind.

Over the months, the idea transformed in a number of ways. Here is how the idea evolved:

  • An archivist travelling through post-apocalyptic America to interview or gather works from any prominent authors that may still be alive. Instead of finding a specific author, she meets his widow instead. They get to know each other as the archivist interviews the widow and eventually fall in love.
    • Archivist collecting works: Inspired by a book of old Japanese poems collected by a poet
    • The widow: Inspired by interviews with Wallace’s widow
  • A woman is part of a resistance group who is tasked with protecting the wife a prominent revolution author, as the author is jailed. They eventually fall in love.
    • Love in the revolution: Inspired by For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway
  • Same thing as above, but the author was martyred.
  • A woman comes back from a mission to find Earth in disarray and her lover is part of a revolution against the entity that enabled her to go on the mission in the first place.
    • Trying to tie in an old old old old story idea of mine
  • Two students befriend each other but are at odds when revolution get in between them.
    • Students: Reminded of Bulgakov

So, I don’t really know what I’m writing about. I’m trying to get something. I’m doing NaNoWriMo not to write a novel, but to write every day. Despite this goal, I’m struggling to write something. Maybe it’s because I don’t know my characters well and I have a loose notion of plot.

Hopefully I’ll figure it out.