NaNoWriMo ’17 – Jaybird

It has begun again and I have my writing notebooks ready for this challenge. Two years ago, I participated and won the NaNoWriMo challenge of exceeding 50,000 words on my first novel, Miragen. Challenging and stressful as it was, I really want to try it again for my second novel which I mentioned in an old post to expand more. I had a thought about going back to finish and develop more onto Miragen to make a second and finished draft. However, there is so much motivation to write Jaybird and the story behind it that I think now is the time.

For now, here is the novel’s synopsis:

The only memory Nerriah had upon waking up into this clouded world was being in a dark room. Now before her is a world clouded in misery and grey where everyone must survive. Accompanied by her classmate Jay and other survivors, they travel around this dreary world to search for a way out and the existence of the world.

I thought I would give a little inside into this novel. Not everything is in stone as well as I have only started writing ideas and notes from last year until now. Originally, I have found inspiration for this novel through the Walking Dead (Telltale games) and Dark Souls game series.

So, a little bit about the main character Nerriah. Before arriving in this world, Nerriah was studying at Echike University, specialising in Humanites and Psychology. Nerriah wasn’t relatively known as she only speaks when spoken to and only . She knew most of the people in her third year but kept to her small group of friends.

The title was inspired mainly by the secondary character, Jay and the idea of what a saviour is called in the book. Birds are rarely seen in the book but the symbolism represents freedom, perspective or an omen of things to come. I had once researched about Jaybirds having the meaning of carefree attitudes, desire and good luck, not knowing that there were so many different types. But in particular, I preferred the meaning of The Stellar Jay (pictured above) which represents fortitude. rebirth, and life after death and it will be a part of my aesthetics and future idea for the novel.

The novel’s main themes that I decided upon from creating this title are freedom, life after death, mental health, fear and time. While this novel’s genre is survival/adventure, it is also a challenge for me to explore psychological problems among humans and a darker side of reality. The map above that I am currently developing is a combination of the human body (the top being the brain). It is a world where survival is imminent.

People will die throughout the book and Nerriah will make decisions that will lead to not-so-good choices. There are always two sides to why something happens and I have a few surprises and complications to what must be done.

One location that I am giving special attention to is The Spire. It has no official name apart from the Onyx Spire. It was an idea that I had picked up playing games such as Castle of Illusion, Dark Cloud and more in my childhood where going through levels upon levels in one location led to good and bad memories. I have listed are crabs, being buried alive and holes just to name a few. However dealing with a darker side to a person’s mind, I have to think how I can combine these fears in order for Nerriah and other characters to face them. There might have been a trigger warning while reading this book.

Another reason I am joining is to interact more with the NaNo community. You can gain inspiration and encouragement from other writers and I plan to talk more with others who are also writing their own novels. Offline communities will have to be a near future investment.

I am excited to start Jaybird in a few days and interact more with other aspiring writers in the NaNo community. I hope to complete the goal, be able to have a first draft completed and grow a reader base around the novel.

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