*NaNoWriMoProRe: National Novel Writing Month Progress Report
Day four of National Novel Writing Month, and I’m at 6,126 words in The Lord of Nightmares. Usually I like to be much further ahead at this point, but at least I’m keeping pace… Well, after I add another 542 words today I will be. I think that part of the problem that I’m having is that the tone of the story and its reading level are different than I’ve attempted in the past. Those of you familiar with what I’ve written before probably won’t notice much of a difference in style and subject matter — there’s still that horror element, and that humor element (at least, I hope so). However, I’m doing my best to cut back on the naughty language that I realized seems to permeate my stories, and that’s a little difficult. However, what has been more difficult than I had anticipated was avoiding some of the more blatant sexuality which I was surprised had showed up in the draft of last year’s novel. There’s my villain Chelsea Whetstone, for example, lieutenant to the Lord of Nightmares. A theme that I’ve developed with her in the earlier draft was that of control: Chelsea desperately wants to be in control of her destiny and of every situation around her, but at the same time she feels like her body sabotages her at every turn by being "painfully girly" at inopportune times. She wants to be intimidating and controlling when she’s angry, for example, but she’s never been able to control the fact that when she gets angry, she cries. Well, that’s okay, and there’s no problem including that in a YA novel, as far as I can tell. However, Chelsea also has similar issues directly related to her sexuality, and this was a big part of her character in the first novel.
And, of course, she’s evil. She kills people. She’s not an indiscriminate killer, but when she feels like her world is spinning out of control, killing someone will help her put things back into focus. Plus, one of the sexuality issues I mentioned is that when she knows she is directly responsible for a man’s death, she gets really aroused.
She’s an interesting character to me, though I certainly wouldn’t want to meet her.
There is also a gore issue. The level of gore I’m putting in probably isn’t child friendly. RL Stine was never so gory, at least not in the Goosebumps series. On the other hand, I’ve been reading the Demonata series of YA horror by Darren Shan, and he’s got stuff in there that’s far more gruesome than I’ve ever written. I haven’t tried reading his Cirque de Freak novels, even though I’m told they’re very good, simply because they’re vampire fiction, and I believe I have made my feelings toward vampires quite well known.
That’s it for now. Back to writing.