I did it!!!
I drafted 50k (technically 53,145) of Harpy Girls Book II: Ryper’s New Groove and it was a lot of fun to *actually* be drafting something new instead of revising (calm down, calm down, I still like revising better). It’s not finished, but I’m choosing to walk away from drafting in favor of continuing my revisions on Book I.
Because while I made progress on RNG, the real takeaway here is how much I learned about book I, which, pre-NaNo, I was slowly working through revisions of. There were some major things that needed to be sorted in that story and forcing my characters to continue their journey helped me find some ways to fill in those blank spots and make some other adjustments that have a positive impact on Book I.
Most notable, the actual magic system. I always write fantasy because I love magic, but the magic is usually one of the last things I add or work out in any draft I write. I have a general idea of how the magic works, but until I know the whole story, I don’t always know what the rules and limitations should be or precisely how it works.
I was also able to clarify character and plot arcs for my mains. Writing a sequel is a whole new skill set and I'm super glad that I'm playing with it now so I can wallow in the difficulty before I might ever be called upon to do this under duress (aka, a publisher's contract). And people say there's no benefit to being unagented.
To celebrate I'm going to share my top five favorite snippets that I wrote this month. I might give context. I might not. *shrug* Please enjoy my 100% unedited zero draft snippets from Harpy Girls II: Ryper's New Groove
This is from chapter one and I love it because Caldor and Valen are the ship that [REDACTED].
Okay, I love this **GEM** of a snippet because it highlights the easy friendship between my two MCs. They are squad goals & possess the ability to slide between serious heartfelt moments & calling each other out, even if it was 7 years ago. (also note my fantastic use of brackets to fill in areas where I have no idea what actually happened/or is going on)
THIS SNIPPET. So, this one features the titular (look, I know it makes me like five years old, but I giggle every time I see or hear that word) character of Ryper's New Groove: Ryper. Tbh, I'm not sure her POV is going to stay--it's a structural decision for future Katja to decide. I also wrote in first person for her. Or tried. Like two paragraphs after this I slipped into third then just kept the dialogue in first. It's weird. But I do love Ryper & this was so much fun to write, so I'm hoping I can find a way to keep her POV in this book.
Heheheehehehehee. This might be my favorite and I really hope that should HG & RNG ever make it to a publishing stage that this stays exactly as is through copy edits and is in the final, published version:
Okay, okay. Look, the "being caught by the enemy and asked to disarm and then producing enough weapons to arm a small militia" is my FAVORITE TROPE of all time. F A V O R I T E. And all of a sudden I was like, I can do that! HERE! ORGANICALLY! I cannot tell you how pleased I am about this opportunity because I'm not kidding, it could be a horrible book/movie/tv show, but if a version of this trope is include, I AM ALL IN.
How do I follow the amazingness of snippet #4? How can I possibly top that raw, emotional moment of "the weapons thing?" With this. No context, BUT I will admit this is slightly edited as I was playing with the lines for about an hour before I was happy with them. (And there's still an agreement typo in there because I changed one part of the sentence, but not the other...ah, zero drafts, ain't they just the best?)
What snippet did you like best? How is your NaNo going? Drop me a note in the comments! There are still a few days left, so buckle down, brew some tea, eat some chocolate, & get those words down!