Every year since 2011, I’ve participated in National Novel Writing Month, or NaNo, as it is affectionately known. Last year—yes, even in the midst of cancer stuff—I worked on two novels for the duration of November. This year, I’m working on only one.

I was originally going to write the first book of Autocrat’s Rise, which is set on Chraest. Unfortunately, I got about four plot cards on this story, and the characters all shut up. I haven’t been able to think of a way past this block.


Instead, I’m working on a totally new concept set in a resurrected world. This story is a fantasy mystery: Jodalur Investigative Division: Case Journal One: Masks. If this story makes it to the end of November with any sort of word count above 10k, I’ll be adding it, and the world its on, to my Projects page here on the site. If it doesn’t get more than 10-15k, I’ll set it aside and let it percolate for a bit longer before taking it up again—and in the meantime concentrate on one of my listed projects.

In part, I’m using this Nano as an opportunity to try out a new genre. Writing a mystery has been on my Writing Bucket List for a while now, so I’m glad to have the chance to do it now. I expect, if it makes it to 50k by the end of November, I’ll be setting it aside once I’ve validated the word count. I’ll also likely be taking a brief hiatus from writing, if Nano does to me like it usually does and makes me sick of my work. For this, I’m kind of glad I’m working on something so different from my other stuff; it’s my hope that instead of not writing for a couple-few weeks after this November, I’ll simply set aside Masks and go to work on something else.