When I start a new story, it seems as if I go through this intense period of “What the Hell Am I Going to Do?” thinking that can, at times, be a little madding. I can have a title for my story, and still not have any idea where the story is going to head. Or I’ll have a concept, but no characters and no title. Worse yet, I’ll know the characters and concept, and even a good direction for a story, but I have no title.
Camp NaNo put me in the position of thinking about a project. I had an idea; I had characters; I even had the story. What I lacked was a title. I know this sounds strange, but I almost never start writing until I have a title. This is a habit I got into a long time ago, picked up from a couple of writers that I read quite often in my early years.
That’s where I was last night, up until about seven PM. That was when inspiration hit me, and the “Putting the Project Together Rag” began playing. And when I was through, maybe around nine-thirty, I’d created what you see to your right.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Welcome to the Fishbowl.
I know what you’re thinking: Fishbowl? And what is this thing at the top: The Foundation Chronicles? There’s a reason for this, so sit back and listen up.
The Foundation (yeah, I know, it’s original, move along) is something I started playing with months ago: an organization that sorts of started out as a club for super scientist, and eventually evolved into something else more . . . paranormally. Is that a real word? It is now.
So I have my organization that looks for strange young minds to bring into their fold, and once I knew who they were, then it became a matter of figuring out what to do with them. And then I remembered something from real life . . .
When my daughter started 6th Grade–or middle school, take your pick–the administration, and the kids, refereed to the experience as “being in the fishbowl”. While they were in the same school as 7th and 8th graders, they were kept as segregated from them as possible. The idea was to get them as used to middle school, and the transition of going from class to class, as easily as possible, without having to deal with a lot of interaction from the other grades.
When I applied that idea to my new student, it made sense. In my story you have thirty-two kids out of thirty-three coming into a school not knowing anything about the world they’re entering, and the transition will be hard enough without upper class kids getting in their way. Ergo . . . they get fishbowled.
This is my project, this is my story. My goal is thirty-five thousand words for July, and then I’ll shut the story down, work on something else–at this moment I think I’m going to edit Couples Dance and get it ready for publishing–then when the Big NaNo Dance starts up in November, I’ll pull The Foundation Chronicles out again and add my fifty thousand plus words to finish the story.
Oh, and did you notice the folder “Book Two”?
Yeah, I love Scrivener.