It comes around as often as November, and for several years when I was just beginning, I took part every year in the great determination called NaNoWriMo.
Determination is actually a good description of the month-long event. Novelists from all genres will do everything they can to complete at least 50,000 words in a new novel. They celebrate at write-ins, have routine meetups and word-sprints. They even connect with writing buddies to provide challenges and encouragement.
And it just so happened that a new story was bugging me just in time to participate.
In all honesty, I’d intended to write the third book of the Heath’s Point Suspense. This is a story that I’d written as a serial almost a decade ago. It needs complete replanning and rewriting because it doesn’t work at all for a novel. I struggled with it throughout the entire month of October, trying to force the elements of the story to work. They resisted. The very last day of the month, I asked the Lord to please bless my working through the story. To help me have a clear idea of the plan.
I immediately had the words “Giselle’s story” enter my mind. Wait … no … Giselle’s story is the sequel to AIN’T MISBEHAVING. I’m nowhere near ready to write that. I barely know the two main characters in that book, as though we’d been introduced but hadn’t chatted at all.
Still, the impulse stayed with me. I was convinced I was supposed to spend this month working on CRY ME A RIVER, the second book in the Dallas Duets series. I only had one day to plan, so I started writing everything I knew about the story. The hero – I didn’t even have his name – is a cop and he stops Giselle and gives her a ticket. That was about all I knew when I started a week ago.
The video became the birthing of a brand new story. I carried around the sticky-note pad for a couple of days, jotting down every scene idea that came into my mind. Yesterday, I compiled all of the ideas, added a little here and there and the story was complete.
As hard as it was to plan the Heath’s Point Suspense, the new Dallas Duet just poured out. In fact, I even have a novella idea that connects the two books together. I so love these characters and I can’t wait to tell you more about them!