You can tell exactly how frazzled I am by the fact that I'm writing my first NaNo post less than two hours before kick-off. Last year I started my plans mid-October and the idea had been percolating much longer than that. This year I've been behind on everything and NaNo is no exception.
I came up with an inciting incident a while ago: a woman is accosted at knife point in her car. Beyond that, I was a little lost but now I've got a working premise. It's not a car, it's a camper-van. My protagonist's called Jess and she's taking her niece away for the summer while she does a few gardening jobs. And the woman who holds a knife to her throat? That's Naomi. And there's a very good reason why she's been driven to desperate ends. The thing is, Jess and Naomi have never met before.
I've managed to do some character work and I've got a few launching points. Beyond that...I'm winging it. I certainly think that's going to make for an interesting November.
The thing, writing 50,000 words in a month isn't a challenge for me these days. Provided the idea's good then I can run with it and get the first draft written. Perhaps that's what aiming to be a professional writer does for you. Someone pointed out to me last week that I'd managed to complete NaNo four times while doing a PhD at the same time. That should make this year a piece of cake.
I'm exuding arrogance. That probably means I'm riding for a fall but we'll see. Let's NaNo.