Alright, I’m a little bit worn out from editing all day, but I’m still on my NaNo project, though it’s taken a strange turn
I’m just going to put it out there. The word supernova hit while I was brainstorming, and I was like, “Okay, cool. How can I make this into a story?”
I looked up the possibility of nearby stars going boom, and what kind of effects they would have on our solar system. The truth here is that smaller, closer stars would probably be more disastrous to human life on this spinning ball of dirt, but most of the active candidates for an upcoming blast really wouldn’t bother us that much. In fact, some of my astro buddies and I would be thrilled to have the photo-op.
I didn’t want an “end of the world” doomsday scenario. Everyone’s doing those, and when I think along those lines, a CME from our own star fits better for me for that kind of thing. But there would be little changes. I figured, I’m brainstorming, just figure out the world building and fit the rest in later…so I did.
The world for my NaNo novel is actually a good chunk of the Solar System. I wanted the story to be far enough in the future for the oddball circumstances of my ideas would have time to happen, so I’m looking around 100 years out. Chemical rockets are still in use as lift stages, but most ships have advanced ion propulsion systems. It still takes a while to get to Mars and back.
I also wanted the police force in the story to be of the highest caliber (I know, hard to believe for some), so I invented an entire history for a worldwide policing organization. Actually, it took humanity a couple of tries to get it right. The first instance was a rather bothersome and invasive derivative of Interpol. Then drugs were invented to ensure total cooperation of anyone who decided to enforce the law. They cannot deviate from their “programming,” but this had the odd side-effect of politicians and corporate douches getting waxed in a Judge Dredd type of empire that gradually eroded our current system of governments. And in the present, the drugs are also laced to strip a certain enzyme so that they are 100% addictive from the first hit. You don’t take your compliance drug, you die. So my paramilitary is pretty set in their ways, and they’ve become their own self-serving faction for good. Signing up means saying goodbye to any possibility of harming others.
This, and more. I have a currency and information system based on crypto-currencies, and where their future might be. The wealthy and well-off live pretty secluded lives with lots of police oversight, while the poor and working classes slave away in dense cities (or what’s left of them) trying to scratch out a living, etc., etc.
I came up with a very detailed future, filling half a composition book with ideas.
Then I went back to my original idea.
Nothing I’ve constructed has ANYTHING at all to do with the supernova. Go figure. That’s the way the NaNo rolls though. I’ve discarded the whole premise of my first attempt, but I kept the world, and now I plan to go a totally different route with the main character, her struggle, and the theme that every decision or idea has at least three ways you can look at it.
In the story, the police, the well-off, and the poor are struggling with a new law that affects all of them in very different ways. There’s actually four “factions,” but the others are being saved for the story.
The benefits of creating a world first are that you can go anywhere, choose anyone, and start a story inside of this vivid universe that you created. The downside is that you have the universe, and now you need to pluck a story out of it.
I’m going to continue on this path though. I figured out my main character, who I’m calling Keesha for the moment, and her entry into the beginning of a plot that touches many facets of this unique world of mine. (I left out a few details, haha) It also touches base with current problems in our society, and problems that persist throughout history. Most of them are subtle things that people don’t pay attention to.
So, I have a character and a decent bit of back story, I have a good world that seems to be sewn up pretty well, and I’m starting to work on the actual plot of the novel (past the back story stuff). There are two more characters that I need, and I’ve put them in my notes, and well, I can see this turning into much more than a single novel. We’ll see how I feel after living in this place during November. I’m also going to make some back-up plots in case the first story doesn’t turn out the way that I want.
How far along are you on your NaNo idea?
You don’t have to go into detail like I did. But do you have a plot? A main character? How is your world building coming?
I think the best way to prepare for fast writing is to figure out what you will need to research, and do all of that studying ahead of time. You don’t want to break in the middle of a writing sprint to do 3 hours of Internet searching because you failed to prepare.
I still need to prepare a “bag of bricks” to throw at Keesha if things get boring, but I’m hoping to have it all sorted out soon. It’s never to early to start plotting your novel.