Yesterday was a pretty good start. Not as good as last year or the year before, perhaps, but I don’t have the statistics to check against, and it isn’t that important anyway. I scored about twelve hundred words before I left for work yesterday morning, and by the time I went to bed, I brought my total up to around twenty-seven hundred. Appreciable. Acceptable. Respectable.

I even made sure to revive my NaNoWriMo account before midnight and update my word count there — I say this primarily because I’ve felt so out of it the last few weeks that I haven’t bothered before now. Cookiemonger has been telling me horror stories about the site redesign, and I just haven’t felt compelled to visit before now. I stayed just long enough to check my NaNoMail and update my word count.

My approach to writing the novel this year is a combination of my approaches to the last two years. When I wrote The Shadow Out of Mind two years ago, I just focused on the next section of text, only the next few hours in the story. I showed almost every hour of every day that passed in the story, and I think only a matter of three or four days passed in the whole of the novel. It was a meandering narrative, if I recall.

Last year, my work on Infinite Arcades was left so sparse that I didn’t have a context in which to begin revision before December. Instead, I started on a sequel, and when I ran out of words in that, a prequel. Months and years passed in the narratives of all three novels, but none of them were especially readable. They had no meat, they were skin and bones. This year, I figured I’d do things a little differently.

Because I wanted to make sure some time passed between events, and I wanted to show an actual progression of time, I outlined the events across a little over a month, with the highlights marked out. It probably took me about thirty minutes to do so. Then I began to speculate about how the narrative would travel from one point to the next, and over the next hour, plotted the beginning of the novel.

Yesterday, I wrote Chapter 3. I know it’s Chapter 3 because that’s where it belongs in the narrative. It’s a lull between the action in Chapter 2 and the building action of Chapter 4 into Chapter 5. Today, I’d like to continue about where I left off, and write in Chapter 4, but I don’t have the same time this morning that I had yesterday, so I might not get to any of it at all until my lunch break this afternoon, or even this evening.

I’ve got my fingers crossed that this method will work. Oh, and as soon as they have the silly widget working, I’ll put it on the site. When I last tried, neither Write Or Die, or the official NaNo widgets were working. Le sigh.