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NaNoWriMo begins tomorrow

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Some of you know I’m a pantser (write by the seat of your pants – very little to no planning – ‘free writing’). I’m in a slightly different head space with my Nano project this time.

Last year I decided on October 31 to have a go. No idea what I was going to write. Sat down at the keyboard and let her rip. Ended up with the book, On A Life’s Edge.

This year, I’m writing a sequel. Also I’m itching to get started. Guess what: I’ve sort of done a plan to fill in the time before Saturday. I say ‘sort of’ because I have
– chosen a set of characters from book 1,
– decided who the MC (Shawna), nemesis and hero are,
– jotted a few scenes that I can throw in
– gone back to book 1 to figure out how old the kids are now, what their development stages are, birthdays (important milestones for children)
– thought about what the existing and new locations will be,
– jotted down how the characters from book 1 will change in the sequel, and
– considered which loose ends from book 1 the readers may have questions about that can be answered in this one.

It’s been quite awhile since I’ve written a sequel and my memory isn’t exactly as sharp as it used to be. For example, I spent time searching book 1 to be sure of hair colours for characters. That’s something I hadn’t recorded when writing book 1. Note to self: keep more character notes when writing any characters/location the first time.

Anyone else finding their writing approach different this time? Are you a planner or a pantser? Do you approach a project differently if it’s a sequel or part of a series?

Discuss.