Beautiful Books // introducing my nano novel

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IT IS THAT TIME AGAIN. November, aka NaNoWriMo, aka I try to juggle way too many responsibilities at once and fail to write a novel. But despite this bout of pessimism, I am still very much here and thinking about The WIP. You may have seen me discussing it here and there on the blog, but overall I think you guys should hear a bit more. Because I like to talk about my smol children. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Beautiful Books is a great link-up hosted by Cait @ Paper Fury and Sky @ Further Up and Further In.

What inspired the idea for your novel, and how long have you had the idea?

Please don’t laugh at me, because I have an extremely embarrassing origin story for this idea. (Even more embarrassing to people I know in real life. SAVE ME.) So I went to see my school’s production of King Henry V, and Henry (as well as a bunch of others because you know the original is almost all-male) was played by a girl. And I just thought… This seems really cool. And it would be EVEN COOLER in space.

Describe what your novel is about!

My WIP is essentially war, extremely-hyped-up-Wikipedia, and angst ALL IN SPACE. It revolves around four characters surviving through a conflict semi-started by one of the characters. (That is, Eleanor.) And there is also another royal who spends her time hating everything, a moody guy who doesn’t at all want to be in the armed forces, and a small mechanic who is possibly the only positive character in the whole book.

What is your bookโ€™s aesthetic? Use words or photos or whatever you like!

Here I direct you to my Pinterest board. All the time I have spent making that board should have been spent on planning, because now I have like 2 weeks to rewrite my whole plan, but NEVER MIIIND. *laughs manically*

Introduce us to each of your characters!

Okay, I’ll interest you to the four main characters and tell you a bit about them:
-> Junjie, an accidental hacker who roped himself into serving in the armed forces in order for his various wrongdoings to not be released. His mother is pretty important in the government, but she and Eleanor hate each other’s guts. And Eleanor doesn’t know that he’s in the army. Also, he has a cool cyborgised hand. (Is that a word? That’s super not a word. Oh well.) ย Although no one thinks it’s cool because they all hate androids, but there we go.
-> Eleanor, a very determined newly ascended space queen. Originally my Henry V figure, although I’m not really retelling it anymore. But THAT’S WHAT SHE’S LIKE. She can have a very volatile temper but she is super patriotic.
-> Neus, who is also the heir to her city — I mean, there is a really weird political system that is still slightly in the works. So there is voting but also…not voting. (I KNOW AND I AM SORRY.) But she takes it in a completely different way; she doesn’t want to govern at all, and basically no one else wants her to, but she feels like she’s letting everyone down. THERE IS A LOT OF ANGST AND GUILT WITH THIS ONE.
-> Jem, a small mechanic who is literally still completing school but somehow is old enough to help out with military things. In an actual war. I’M SORRY I NEED TO THINK THIS THROUGH BUT NEVER MIND. They are a precious science-loving person. And also they are very sceptical of Junjie’s ‘I DO NOT CARE’ attitude. Hmm.

How do you prepare to write? (Outline, research, stocking up on chocolate, howling, etc.?)

Well… I’ve been trying to write this for about a year now, and I do have an 8k plan filed away on my computer. I’ve done a bunch of patchy worldbuilding and I also have character sheets, but I’ve basically had to abandon the first draft of my plan. *cries* I’ve been trying to do a bit of general research to help me with my character backgrounds and stuff — because I really want to get them right. And I also did read Henry V when i first thought it was going to be more a retelling.

What are you most looking forward to about this novel?

Being able to write the character interactions. I am absolutely TERRIBLE at plot, but I’m kind of just looking forward to getting all my characters to finally meet up. (I don’t know. As I write this I’m actually realising that most of this novel has been STRESS. And I think that I do need to remind myself why I wanted tot do it in the first place.)

List 3 things about your novelโ€™s setting.

1. It is in space, and there are space pirates, and there are also spaceships and planets and lots of geeky space things.
2. Everyone is obsessed with finding new information and uploading it to, like, a giant inter-galactic Wikipedia. This is kind of sad because creativity isn’t really valued. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
3. I need to desperately do worldbuilding… *coughs*

Whatโ€™s your characterโ€™s goal and who (or what) stands in the way?

I’ve flitted a lot between who actually is the main focus of this book, and I feel like it will probably change yet. It used to be Eleanor, and her goal is to achieve the respect of her people and live up to her parents’ legacy. But now it’s more about Junjie and he…kind of needs a goal? I guess that is his goal at the start. But then I think he comes to realise that he needs to escape and find his own life. And the main thing standing in the way of that is that THERE IS A WAR HELP.

How does your protagonist change by the end of the novel?

Are we going with Junjie for this? Yeah, okay, let’s do that. At the end he’s learning that it’s okay to express his emotions instead of repressing them — and how to care about people and things again.

What are your bookโ€™s themes? How do you want readers to feel when the story is over?

I’d like to think that the main themes are what it means to be human, how people value information in a digital age, and self-acceptance, I guess? Those sound really cheesy… I promise it’s better in the context of the book ahaha. The end that I currently have planned is a very strings-heavy epilogue. (As in, violin strings.) I slightly constructed it around Lana Del Rey’s Born to Die; if you listen to that song really loudly then it will give you an idea.

Okay, this exercise has DEFINITELY highlighted for me some things that I need to work on. It makes me a little nervous to write so much about this idea, because I’m kind of scared? And I do actually want to finish it. But PLEASE FEEL FREE TO GIVE ME YOUR FEEDBACK. โค

are you doing nanowrimo this year? if you plan your writing, how do you go about it?

16 thoughts on “Beautiful Books // introducing my nano novel

  1. This sounds absolutely amazing! I would definitely read your book. I wish you all the best of luck with writing your novel ๐Ÿ˜€

    1. Ooh yeah I remember your post, good luck! I think I’m only on like the Young Writer’s site, alas… Although I’m running into a bunch of problems with it so I might have to move to the adult site. And I’d love to add you if I do! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. I’m also a writer and I’m so glad I found your blog. It’s always nice to connect with other writers. And it’s also great to talk about books when we’re not writing. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ve written two books in the last two years, and I sent them off to my editor and I still haven’t gotten myself in gear to finish them up and send them off to agents and publishers. I know how hard it can be. Hang in there and keep writing. ๐Ÿ™‚ I had awful writers block all summer and I’m now trying to work through it. World building is never easy. I ran into some issues with my fantasy novel. If you ever want someone to talk to about blogging and writing, I love talking about both. I love the idea for your novel. Space is one of my favorite settings. Good luck with everything. Happy reading and writing! ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. *high fives* Yay for books and writing! They’re both great topic to talk about. You’ve definitely got farther than me, though — congrats on finishing and sending them to an editor! I really hope you can send them off to an agent or something ๐Ÿ™‚
      For some reason I tend to get writer’s block over the summer, too… I mean, I kidn of prefer to write poetry or short things then? Yep, worldbuilding is DIFFICULT . *sighs* I’d love to talk about writing and stuff! โค I adore space but I'm still trying to figure out exactly some unique ideas for the world I suppose haha.
      Good luck to you to, hurrah for reading & writing! ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. Thank you! ๐Ÿ™‚ I keep struggling with my writers block. I’m hoping I can get back to normal soon. Too many life changes I suppose. It must be the nice weather and going outside that gives us writer’s block in the summer. A lot of writers seem to have the same issue. Writers Digest has some great tutorials on their site for when you’re stuck or need help figuring out where to go next. Yeah, we’ll definitely have to chat about writing and our progress. Fingers crossed the writers block goes away. It’s been far too long. ๐Ÿ˜‚

  3. Oh my god, I am officially IN LOVE with this idea. Your characters sound amazing! I definitely need to read this ๐Ÿ˜€

  4. Ohhhh, I really like the sound of this, Eve! To be honest, we always need more books set in space, because everyone’s idea of space is different. And also the incredible and massively important Wikipedia element has me highly intrigued.

    It’s awesome that you were able to find things that you need to work on by answering these questions! Perhaps I should do that with the WIP that has been on hold for about a year *laughs nervously*

    I’ve never done NaNo before, because it always used to fall in uni exam time. I’m not sure if it’s for me, because I am such a mood writer (which really doesn’t help me, because it’ll have been six months and I’m just like: I have been in the mood, GAHD). Maybe I SHOULD do it, and force myself to either continue my WIP or start this other project I’m really excited about. Or maybe edit. Or just do something writing related!

    Anyway, I wish you all the writing luck on this story because it sounds awesome ๐Ÿ˜€

    1. Aah thank you, I’m so glad you think it sounds good! I am myself basically just…a space nerd. Although there isn’t actually that much space and battleships in this one. Er, I definitely need to develop it but YES there is an intergalactic Wikipedia! And space information pirates!

      I think I know my WIP super well but then I do something like this and I really don’t haha.

      Yeah, NaNo isn’t at the most convenient time — often I prefer Camp NaNo a lot more because it falls over my school holidays. I don’t think it’s for everyone but I KNOW HOW YOU FEEL. I always tell myself I’ll write and then everything else just comes first.

      Thank you, and good luck with your writing as well! ๐Ÿ˜€

      1. I’M SURE YOU WILL. Okay NaNo has ended but that doesn’t mean you can’t work on your WIP anymore if you didn’t finish it ๐Ÿ˜›

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