Thursday, November 02, 2006

NaNo and Mars

So I, like about 70,000 other writers, am doing NaNo this year. "Doing NaNo" being shorthand for participating in National Novel Writing Month. I've done this for three, maybe four years, and each time, I get something out of it. Sometimes it's "man, I can't write this way--I need to edit!" Other times it's, "man, I have to write this way--editing's just holding me back!" I have one of those cyclical writing processes--nothing I do works the same way twice. My process is a constantly-evolving thing.

Much like this blog post. The story I'm working on for NaNo is a full-length sequel to my novella, "Hounded" which just came out this month from Liquid Silver Books in the anthology "A Witch In Time." "Hounded" takes place in the future, where humans have colonized the inner Solar system and brought with them some interesting not-quite-scientific denizens. In the sequel, the hero is a Martian (yes, go ahead, make the "Men are from Mars" jokes now. Better? Okay, then, moving on), and most of the action is slated to take place in the Martian system.

So I've been keeping tabs on Mars news, and discovered that NASA is gearing up to go look for all the Martian crap they keep losing. I, for one, am grateful for this. It means that Mars is in our sights once again, and more importantly, it means we're thinking far enough ahead to attempt to recycle before we make a craptastic mess of somebody else's neighborhood.

The fact that we're now looking for the space-junk we'd previously write off makes me hopeful, and hesitant at the same time. What happened to the value of space exploration? Are we that cheap? On the other hand, the fact that we're looking to clean up our mess tells me that one day, we'll want to maybe live and work let's not turn it into a garbage dump beforehand.

In my universe, Martians are a stubborn and contrary lot, prone to hard livin'. Mars itself has not been kind to our Earthly probes. Both the US and Britain have lost equipment attempting to land on the surface of our ruddy brother planet. Makes me kinda wonder if Mars itself isn't as contrary as his future settlers. ;)


Bernadette Gardner and Jennifer Colgan said...

Good luck with NaNo, Xandra! I know what you mean about nothing working the same way twice. I've pantsed and plotted, powered through first drafts and edited the heck out of every sentence as I went...I guess it depends on the story and a gazillion other factors every time you start a manuscript. My motto for most things in life is, Whatever Works.

MK Mancos/Kathleen Scott said...

Makes me wonder if we "lost" all that junk, or the neighbors borrowed it and never returned it.

It could happen.