In some ways NaNoWriMo writing is like any other writing, aside from the whole 50,000 words in thirty days thing. You come up with an idea, you plan the project down to the chapter and scene (loving the Scrivener), and, wouldn’t you know it, a whole minor plot line involving the protagonist’s relationship with his almost-grown son pops up and demands attention, to the tune of 3,754 words.
Yet, it isn’t useless because I gained deeper insight into the male lead: He wants his personal happiness but not at the expense of his son’s, whom, because of his employment, he’s had to leave in a boarding school for the children of spies. Oh, and he hasn’t informed the female main character he has a son because he doesn’t know how she’ll react to the fact she’s only four years older than the son.
Wow! This romance stuff can be almost as convoluted as a spy tale.
Today’s word count brings me to a total of 35,398.
By the way, if you’re reading the excerpts and thinking to yourself, or aloud maybe, boy, she really does use a lot of dialogue tags, rest assured it’s merely an increase-the-word-count artifice. They get edited out later.
So, without further ado, here we have an excerpt from the end of the father/son discussion:
“Do you love her?” Peter asked.
“I don’t know that, yet. I honestly thought after your mother, I’d never feel anything for anyone again, but this woman… The first time I was with her,” Alexei said, lowering his voice, “it felt like something which had been happening a long time.”
Then, he flushed, glancing at Peter, as if embarrassed, which Peter was, a bit. He’d never expected to discuss such things in such detail with his father.
“I’m sorry,” Alexei said, “I don’t mean for this to be uncomfortable.”
“I never thought I’d be discussing, well, this with you,” Peter said.
“Me, either, but remember if any of this bothers you, I want you to tell me, and I’ll not see her again,” Alexei said.
“And have me be the excuse for your unhappiness?”
“I didn’t mean it that way. You’re practically an adult, but you are my son, my only family here, and your comfort with this situation has to come first,” Alexei said.
“What about her? What does she think of your having a son?” Peter asked.
His father looked away again. “She doesn’t know. Again, if the relationship isn’t going to work, why burden either of you with…”
“Critical details about the existence of each other?” Peter asked.
“You know she exists. She doesn’t know about you not because I didn’t want her to know but because you are my son. You deserved to know this is going on in my life first,” Alexei said. “She is secondary right now.”
“Papa, that attitude will not get you far with her,” Peter said.
His father gave as close to a full smile as he could get. “You may be right,” he said.
“If she makes you happy, why would you worry what I think?” Peter asked.
“Because even though I’ve not been a very good father, I don’t want to be a thoughtless one,” Alexei said.
“How long since my mother died?” Peter asked.
His father frowned, no doubt because he knew Peter was well aware of that statistic. “Almost sixteen years ago,” Alexei murmured.
“And what would she want for you?” Peter asked.
“For me to get on with my life,” Alexei said.
“I think you have your answer, Papa.”