So after a pretty rough month, during which I made some progress on A Mote in the Eye (but not enough, considering how long it took), I’ve dived (dove? doven?) into NaNoWriMo with a murder mystery novel that takes place on top of Mt. Washington and in the Mt. Washington Hotel, in Bretton Woods, NH. And now I’m cruising!
For a while, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to write this one. Plotting a murder mystery turns out to be really hard, and so many of the initial ideas I had turned out to be impossible. My first idea was to have the whole thing take place on top of the mountain, because I thought there was a hotel up there. It turns out… no. The observatory is there (and in fact, my father used to work there, when I was a small boy), and it’s been expanded, but the cafeteria and museum close at night, and there are no accommodations for hikers/tourists. I could have had the whole mystery take place in the observatory, which I vaguely remember from my childhood, but it’s a really small space with a very small staff (three full-time, two interns, and two volunteers).
So what I did was have the murder take place at the summit and involve some of the observatory staff (fictional — not real people who work there) in the search for the missing person, but the bulk of the interviews and such will be conducted at the beautiful Mt. Washington Hotel at the bottom of the mountain. To that end, my husband and I have booked ourselves into the hotel for a couple days in December. I’m really looking forward to it — the place is gorgeous!
I created the “cover” you see in this post to motivate me, using two photos I found online that match what my characters look like. The cover isn’t really what the book will end up with for a cover, assuming it’s published. This is just for inspiration. And yes, I’m aware that the final “N” in “Mountain” is clipped off. After all the work I put into making it in the first place, I haven’t been motivated to go back and fix that.
But NaNoWriMo has provided a nice kick in the pants to get me writing again. I’m a bit behind, but I’m already over 9,000 words going into Day 7! I’m hopeful that I’ll at least hit the NaNoWriMo goal of 50,000 words by the end of November, though the full novel will be at least 60,000 words. I think it should be completely finished by the end of December.