Insomnia-induced NaNoWriMo ramblings

I’m coming at dawn from the wrong side this morning. My circadian rhythms are so far out of whack that I never even felt like going to bed all night. I’m feeling a little like it now, but if I went to bed now I’d sleep the whole day away and be right back where I started tomorrow morning.

I whiled away the wee, small hours by finishing up a copy writing project I’ve been doing for a while, and since finishing I’ve been blowing off steam by playing around with graphics for my NaNo profile. It’s been a productive week of novel planning, and I’ve got all of my main POV characters profiled, a stack of notecards full of scene ideas to arrange, and, wonder of wonders, I even have a title:

Dominion of the Damned

With all of that, I was feeling inspired enough to mock-up a fake book cover. I found an image on a royalty free graphics site that was almost too perfect, added my text, and voila! A “cover” that I almost wish I could actually use if this book ever sells to a publisher. Of course, knowing me, there’s bound to be more romance than is indicated here, but I’m pretty sure that the whole zombies vs. vampires thing is my hook.

Speaking of which, here’s the “synopsis” that’s currently in my profile, which is not so much a plot synopsis, since I don’t know enough to write one of those yet, as it is my “Big Idea” thought process:

Dominion of the Damned explores the question of how an underground race of vampires would react to a global zombie infestation killing off their food supply. Assuming that, since they’re a different kind of living dead, vampires A) would be immune to the zombie-making virus and B) would be ignored by zombies who crave living flesh, it would fall to the vampires to defend humanity against the zombie hordes. But then, how would humanity, now an endangered species, react to the “saviors” who still see them as food?

And lastly, my “excerpt”, which is more of a character study/scene fragment, and which may or may not make it into the manuscript, and which definitely does not count toward my 50,000 words, because that would be cheating:

Hannah stood back from the exam table to study Noah. Sitting there without his clothes, he looked so tiny and frail. Under the sickly green glare of the fluorescent lighting, he looked paler than ever, his ribs and sunken chest a testament to his malnourishment. Glancing up, she almost jumped at the ghastly image looking back at her before realizing it was her own reflection in the polished steel of a medical cabinet. She didn’t look much better than her brother. The chestnut hair that had once been her crowning glory had thinned and lost its luster. She was just as pale as Noah, and the visible cheekbones she had once prayed to get while making fish-faces in the bathroom mirror only made her look skeletal and tired. Add in sunken eyes with dark circles underneath, and she could almost be mistaken for just another member of the walking dead. Not a good look if one wanted to keep her head attached. She tore her eyes away from the image before the reality of it could make her cry, and gave another start to see Alex standing beside her.

His eyebrows raised questioningly at her gasp, and she looked back at the cabinet’s reflective surface. She hadn’t imagined it: only she and Noah showed up there. As she moved closer to the exam table and pulled Noah protectively against her, Alex followed her gaze. “Oh, yes. That. I haven’t figured that one out yet.”

“Figured what out?” asked Noah, oblivious to the strangeness, the otherness of Alex.

Alex pointed at his non-reflection. “The mirrors. It’s one aspect of vampirism that my science has failed to explain to me.” His gaze caught Hannah’s and he smiled, briefly, before pulling a scope from the pocket of his white lab coat and bending level with Noah’s head. “All right, let’s have a look at you, small one.”

And that is what’s been keeping me occupied and awake in the pre-dawn hours of the morning. Right now, Husband is also up, because his brand of insomnia wakes him up super early, and he put on Treasure of the Sierra Madre while he’s having breakfast. I’m debating on whether to make some coffee and have some breakfast along with him, or cave in to the sleepy and go to bed. But I think I can hold out at least a couple more hours, and then take a short nap that’ll get me through the rest of the day, and then maybe I’ll stand a chance of falling asleep at a more reasonable hour tonight. So I guess coffee and breakfast it is, then. And then maybe I’ll get to work arranging that stack of notecards into something that vaguely resembles a plot.

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6 thoughts on “Insomnia-induced NaNoWriMo ramblings

  1. Hey, Jeanie. Just thought I’d drop you note. Got you RSS-ed now.
    My own sleep patterns have been screwed up recently…*before* the daylight savings change back, which is weird. I’m hoping to get back to something resembling normal starting 1 November.
    I’m having to resist the urge to prepare for my Nano novel. 2006 and 2007 I went into incredibly prepared. It’s hard to not do that again. But I really need the “wing-ing it” practice. 🙂
    -David

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    1. Hey, David! It’s hard to resist – I’m afraid I’m over-preparing for this year myself. The one year I actually finished, I totally winged it. But I’ve always been more of a plotter than a pantser, so I’m trying to find some middle ground this year.

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  2. I like the evening hours best as well – the best working schedule I ever had was 4pm to 2am – it was the best of both worlds. About Nanowrimo – after reading the write up – your book sounds interesting – which I was a bit surprised at actually, since the Vampire/Zombie themes don’t usually get my attention… good luck with it. I’ve got a lot on my plate with a 50th anniversary book and a family history book / genealogy – so I won’t be participating this year – maybe I’ll have it together enough to do it next year!

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    1. Thanks, Angela! I’ll miss watching your word count grow this year, but it sounds like you’ve got good reasons to skip it. Good luck with your own books – that IS a full plate!

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