NaNo2020 Narrowing Ideas

Funny how life can change so quickly, right? 

Anyway, I’m not ready to talk about all the things going on in our lives just yet … but it’s been a doozy of a week, let me tell you. Enough so that I feel compelled to drop this update and say PLEASE BE PATIENT with me — if I end up not being able to get into NaNo at all, if I go quiet for a while, or if we miss a Tuesday video posting. Believe me when I tell you I’m not giving up on the writing dream or myself, I’m just doing what needs to be done. I know that’s vague and I’m sorry. 

For now, let’s look at those NaNo ideas again because some of them may not speak to me the same anymore. Besides, if you’re following my process, you have a list of ideas right now that you need to look at again with fresh eyes.

It’s time to start Narrowing Down our Ideas.

  • Three Wishes Story. This still has potential, I think. In my head I know Francine is an adult, like me, who just thinks magic like that belongs in fairy tales and stories. So when she’s granted three wishes, she’s skeptical. I need to play around with what she would spend those wishes on. Does she waste one first? Does she waste all of them? While I scratched this idea out thinking it would be a fun, light project … I’m suddenly not so sure. As an adult myself the pressure to choose something world changing for everyone would be REAL if you were given three wishes. This one still has potential but I’m thinking I need to shelve it for this year. This one may take me longer (and may need me in a different head space). I’ll keep it in the idea journal, but I’m taking it out of the running this year.
  • Genesis Story. This one has potential too, despite getting NONE of your love on social media haha. I think that’s because I explained it really poorly. That’s because the major thing I know about this one is the BIG REVEAL, which I sort of have to keep quiet. Honestly, this one would require a little research and some focus. Not a bad thing, but not sure if I’m in the headspace for research right now. I think this one has to get pushed (again). Some day this one will be the perfect project for me … but that time is not now.
  • Apocalypse Story. This one is OUT of the running. Basically, I can’t figure out what makes this one DIFFERENT than the millions of others available right now. Plus, it makes me anxious because it seems entirely too depressing for me at the moment. Sorry if this is the one you voted for … but it’s not happening this year. 
  • Magic Journal. The only YA project on my list! I can see this one being tempting for me simply because it’s light. I haven’t written light, fluffy YA before. Fraun gets dark and deals with big themes, obviously Projection does too. I suppose this is mostly akin to 30 Days Without Wings … which may be why so many of you voted for it. But, let’s remember, 30 Days took a dark turn a few times. So could this project, inevitably, take a dark avenue? I’m not sure. I may play around with an outline in the next few days. This is a front-runner right now. 
  • Darkest Fears. Unfortunately, I’m throwing this one out right now. Yes, I do want to write thrillers eventually. But right now, it can’t be this one. I’m sorry. It requires too much digging through old writing, which I would have to find. I just … can’t. Not right now. Cool?
  • Hitman. Oooff you people love this idea. I do too, honestly. Plus I think I started a rough outline once. This one is dark, yes, but dark in a strangely intriguing way. Like, escapism for me. Maybe? I don’t know. I can say that this one is still a front runner. I’m planning on checking out this outline I started and seeing what I think about it. This is a serious contender. 
  • Murder. Nope, getting thrown out. It had potential and I will come back to it someday. But, for now, I have to throw it out. Sorry to the people who voted for it!
  • That’s the House. I really like this idea, but I just can’t make it work in my head. Not yet. I’ll keep idea journaling on this one, but I don’t think it’s happening in 2020. Thanks for showing it some love and know that it will make a comeback someday. 

What’s Next?

Well, you can see that I’ve narrowed it down to two ideas. The light-hearted YA about a magic journal and the darker thriller about a hitman. I honestly cannot tell you which will come out ahead in the next week. 

Here’s what I do now. 


  • I’ll start with the major key points. What does the main character WANT, what does the main character FEAR, what is in the main characters WAY, and what is the main character WILLING TO DO to get what they want?
  • Is there a THEME or a LESSON I really want to drive home?
  • I’ll attempt to figure out the loose details for MAJOR plot points (climax, resolution). In other words, WHERE DOES EVERYTHING CHANGE and HOW DOES THIS END? Sometimes, in thinking about this, I’ll get a full scene in my head. In those cases, I’ll WRITE THOSE. Sometimes, I just get a general feeling or a few ideas. I write them all down. 
  • Then, the outline begins. I’ll go chapter-by-chapter jotting down major events that will happen to fill that chapter, noting any feelings or details I imagine. The goal is to see if I can get myself to the climax and resolution I envisioned. More importantly, does the idea start filling itself and give me a sense of excitement? 

At this point, I fully plan to do this with BOTH projects and see which one speaks to me more. I’ll share what I can when I can but I wanted to share with you how I narrowed it down to 2 and what happens when I outline. 

Wish me luck, friend me on NaNo, and happy writing!

Leave a Reply

Powered by

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: