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Something Completely Different

October 28, 2012

And now for something completely different.


A steampunk Lunar colony.

A question of where the man ends and the machine begins.

In other words, my story for NaNoWriMo 2012.

As if I didn’t have enough on my plate, in my never-ending pursuit of literary abandon I’m going to shoot for writing 50,000 words in one month. Or even 100k. It happens.

In preparation, I’ve stocked up on coffee, hot chocolate, and frozen dinners. I’ve backed up my computer. Reorganized my scene cards. Made playlists, one for each day in November, labeled by date and mood.

And I composed a letter to my main character, Teragus Swansong, warning him of my impending assault on his story. Here is what I wrote:

October 28, 2012 The Eleventh Hour

Whispering Pines Writing Retreat

Dear esteemed Lord Swansong,

Though I know it is late, I am writing to request your assistance in chronicling the early years of the Luna colony, as well as your involvement in its development. You might recall that last year I made a similar entreaty as I prepared to write the story of your daughter and future son-in-law, and I am still in your debt with regards to your efforts. However, once again I find myself in the difficult position of attempting to write your entire story in the period of one month.

I must confess that I wish you had you been more forthcoming with your involvement in the emergence of the DRAGN technology so that I might have written your story first. Fortunately, though I have been able to reconfigure my story to put Cerule and Rigel’s story second in the trilogy.

I hope you are not overly concerned that I will be delving deeper into the story of how you came to meet Avery, and why you decided to return to Luna, despite Luna’s betrayal and subterfuge. I understand why you chose as you did and will be sure to represent the story fairly. As far as your dalliance with Daphne is concerned, now that you understand how sparing her life led to a bright future for the DRAGN transports, I’m sure you will have no objections about my revealing the details to my readers.

And was that a hologram of you I saw as I was walking in the park the other day? You seemed so real, though I was surprised you’d chosen to visit me covered with oil and wearing your grey jumpsuit. I saw your eyes for the first time, and I think you were as surprised to see me as I was to see you. I would almost swear it was really you, and not a hologram, except that you were much younger than you are now.

I am still working through the intricacies of your inventions, and am amazed and impressed by your achievements, especially given that you did much of your work underground away from the supervision of the Lunar regime. If you might further elucidate how you managed that I would be grateful.

I hope my missive finds you well, and that I am able to do your story justice in the coming month.

With my regards,

Lady Larke


Tune in next week for Lord Swansong’s reply!

And, how about you? Have you ever written your characters a letter or an email? What do you do to prepare for NaNoWriMo?

  1. October 28, 2012 7:14 pm

    I’m afraid, my process is still rather predictable: know my premise, my characters, and the rules of my world. Select a narrow focus to guide me. The rest is inevitable, if unpredictable.

    I love your letter though! Sometimes I wish I could do meta, but my characters exist in their worlds and I in mine.

    • October 28, 2012 7:22 pm

      Aha. So meta is what this is? Thanks for the insight!
      Because I’m not really sure why this happens, only that it’s fun! Breaking all the rules kind of fun.

      I’m with you though on the predictable parts. Got my scene cards and my sentence and my character motivations. It’s just that sometimes I like to do something kinda weird. 🙂

  2. nancyrae4 permalink
    October 28, 2012 7:33 pm

    As usual, you’ve come up with a unique way to communicate with your characters! I can’t wait for Lord Swansong’s reply.

    No emails or letters but once I interviewed an excessively evil character from the pov of a very nervous reporter. Fun!

    • October 29, 2012 5:54 pm

      Oh, that would be fun!
      It’s always interesting to see where my characters will turn up next. Usually this is a sign that I need to get writing on their story already. 🙂

  3. October 28, 2012 9:39 pm

    Steampunk, dragons, and existential quandaries? Yes, please!

    I have made my NaNoWriMo preparations rather public over on Ink. It’s been helpful to climb back into my characters’ minds and walk around a bit, and it’s given me some insight on ways to strengthen Grove and bring out its themes. I am also planning on blocking out several of the scenes I plan to write in Scrivener tomorrow. I am anxious for Thursday to arrive!

    Can’t say that I have written my characters letters or e-mails…for me it’s as though they exist in an alternate universe. I can see them inside and out through my looking glass, but we can’t communicate.

    • October 29, 2012 6:12 pm

      Not all of my characters come out to talk to me, but I find the most difficult ones to figure out always benefit from a little one-on-one time with me.
      Kind of like a therapy session. 😉

  4. October 28, 2012 11:12 pm

    Well, I never wrote a letter to a character, but I talk to them quite often. Or maybe those are just voices in my head. Works for my writing either way. Maybe I will try writing a letter for NaNo. And as far as planning for NaNo, this is my first time doing it, so right now I am praying — I am a terrible planner 😦

    • October 29, 2012 6:14 pm

      That’s the great thing about NaNo, no planning required! All you need to do is write, and for a wordy fellow like you, 50k should be a piece of cake. 🙂

  5. October 29, 2012 5:58 am

    I haven’t done this, but I have written a journal for a character in their pov.

    PS. I posted just for you today. Hope you like it 🙂

    • October 29, 2012 6:17 pm

      For me! I feel honored. 🙂
      A journal, wow, I think I might try that. The idea is giving me chills. This character of mine always seems to want to write things down, I don’t know why.
      Not yet. 😉

  6. October 29, 2012 8:22 am

    Hey Kirsten, I love this idea. I might have to give it a try. Good luck on Nanowrimo. I will be in the trenches with you.

    • October 29, 2012 6:19 pm

      Hi there Sydney, 🙂
      Thanks for the encouragement! I’m really looking forward to getting started, but I know there will be a stretch or two where I’m wondering whatever possessed me to think this was a good idea.
      It’s good to know I won’t be alone!

  7. October 29, 2012 8:57 pm

    Yes, I do! I just had one of my characters write her dead daughter a letter today. I wonder if any authors every publish these little things as extras? I’d be fascinated to read some from my favorites!

    • October 29, 2012 10:35 pm

      Well, extras like these do make fun blog posts!
      Is your letter part of the book? If not, I’d love to check it out on your blog someday.

  8. November 2, 2012 1:47 am

    Wonderful concept! Adds a new dimension to the character. Thank you.


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