NaNoWriMo Day 1, and the Joy of Conversation

We kicked off NaNo today, and I am delighted to report that I’m closing the day with 1,808 words, comfortably above the daily goal of 1,667.  I’m especially delighted because, on the face of it, this was not going to be a good day for writing–at work all day, then plans in the evening that would keep me out until, well, now (8:58 PM).  But I got to my office early, and with three twenty minutes blocks of time (before work, on my lunch break, right after work) I managed to get out my daily word count.

This was a bit different than other NaNos, since I’m working on a largely-written draft.  I’m more or less working on the last quarter, but I’ve already written chunks of that portion.  So today I stitched together several pieces of a long scene, and then wrote an entirely new (albeit fairly short) scene.  Which was different, but fun.

I was actually starting with a fairly significant turning point in the plot, the first time my heroine, Meg, goes below the Opera to visit the Phantom’s lair–which she assures her mother is really quite nice and not lair-like at all.  I stitched together the visit, then wrote quite the argument as she tries to explain this to her mother.  I think it helped that I could do a lot of dialogue here.  Meg and Erik (the Phantom) love talking to each other so that flowed nicely, and I always like writing some rapid-fire argument dialogue.

I’m not totally sure what scene comes next, but I might be able to do more dialogue, which would be nice!  In the meantime, have an excerpt from NaNo Launch Day.


I managed three steps towards my room before Mother said, “And how is the Phantom?”

I gave up.  I’d have to tell her eventually, and maybe this way I’d at least get points for honesty.  “Erik’s good.  I think he was glad to see me.  And he let me see his home.”

At twelve, I would have shared this news with some naïve expectation that she’d think it was exciting too.  I was older now.  Though my tone tried to make it sound as good as I thought it was, I was not surprised when she turned around much faster and stared at me with an expression rapidly approaching horror.

“He did what?”

I refused to quail as though something dreadful had happened.  Friends invited each other for social calls.  That was all this had been.  There had even been coffee, all quite proper.  “He invited me to see his home.  Under the Opera, you know.”  That didn’t sound quite as proper as it might have.  “It was really quite lovely,” I forged ahead, “he has the loveliest Degas painting, and Persian rugs.  Oh, and a phonograph, that’s a—”

“He invited you to his home, and you went?”

I still wasn’t shrinking, but it was getting harder.  “It would have been rude to refuse.”


“Oh honestly, Mother!  If he was going to kill me, he would have done it by now.”

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