I accidentally started writing a new novel yesterday.
I didn’t mean to. I swear. There was just … this one sentence.
You know how it goes. A line pops into your head, begging for a spot in your book. Which is great, if you’ve already started writing the book that sentence belongs in.
It’s relentless, this sentence. It circles around in your head until you either write it down or go insane listening to it on repeat.
So there was this one sentence I couldn’t get out of my head. I was at work — I really, really needed to concentrate.
Picture it: my lunch break. This collection of words whispering in my ear. I knew I couldn’t stand it much longer. Just write this sentence down and leave it. Leave it alone.
I wrote down that sentence.
And then another sentence came to me.
I spent my entire lunch break writing.
And when it was over, I realized I’d started writing a new book completely against my will.
I’ve had this novel idea (both an idea for a book and an original idea … heh) for a long time. It’s been slowly building itself up in my mind for months. But I’ve been holding it back, since I’m still trying to finish the two novels I have yet to complete, and I’m BUSY.
I’m pretty sure that at some point, after being told “no” for an extended period of time, an idea simply can no longer take no for an answer. At least that’s how it felt as I sat there writing the first page of this new book, trying — and failing — to stop it from happening.
If an idea is meant to become a piece of writing, maybe there comes a moment when it must be written. I did not consciously make the decision to do this. I do not want to start writing a new book right now. Because I know that if I do, it will consume every waking moment of my life for the next month.
I already can’t get it off my mind. And it’s only one page.
And yet, it’s been so long since this idea first came to me (and I don’t even remember how) that I feel I already know these characters as if we’ve been friends for years. I know what’s going to happen to them. I can’t wait to tell their stories.
I don’t know how this is going to work out — this whole having started writing a new book thing. I was not prepared for this. I don’t even know if I’m going to keep writing it or if I just needed to get some of the story out, and I’ll be OK for the next six months.
But I will admit … falling that deep into fiction writing again felt GOOD.
I apologize in advance for the next few weeks, during which I will most likely lose my gosh dang mind.
You have been warned.
Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is a freelance writer and a nine-time NaNoWriMo winner with work published in Teen Ink, Success Story, Lifehack and USA TODAY College. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food and nerdy things.