Monday, November 12, 2018

The heart of the matter (How I NaNo my WriMo 2)

As week two of National Novel Writing Month nears an end, I find my productivity slowing a bit. Part of this certainly comes to my day job in retail where increasing business definitely means I want to spend more time relaxing and less time focused on a few more hours of writing each day.

This doesn't mean I'm not keeping pace with The First: Hero's Dawn. So far I've stayed above par for the NaNoWriMo count day by day, helped along by those strong days at the beginning of the month. With more vacation days ahead for me as November continues, I expect I will use some of that time to play catch up.

As the four sub-plots that make up the over-arcing story continues, I find one more of a challenge than the other three. Interestingly, the hardest one proves to be the most traditional super-tale of the bunch, as I introduce the first costume of the novel, that of the vigilante The Target. (No relation to the public domain Novelty Press superhero of the same name.) While designing a thirties style pulp superhero lets me have fun subverting those tropes in a modern setting, it doesn't compare to the exploration of the outsider status of that era.

Against the backdrop of the waning days of the Great Depression, social upheaval was the name of the game for most of the decade. Yet for the common American, a baseline was in place that simply seems almost backwards by today's standards. Homosexuality. Non-monogamy. Even interracial relationships. Just one would push a person to the fringes of society. All of them might present a world radically different from the sanitized version of the thirties and forties we see and hear far too much about far too often.

I didn't want to simply present super powers as a metaphor in those times however. This is a story about real people in a real time that won't accept them. Ultimately, it may only be their powers that mark them as part of a rational society. Because their powers are the only way they can truly connect to the "norm" as it was seen.

This is just a sampling of the themes I build upon as I work my way through The First: Hero's Dawn. Yet pushing these limits is exactly what I wanted to do here, especially in what I hope will be my first full length novel in the Times Past series. How well will I make it work? I certainly still don't know: I still have tens of thousands of words still ahead of me!

Today's image is of former White Collar star Matt Bomer. His handsome good looks certainly make him one of the actors clearly starring in The First feature film currently playing inside my head.

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