In case you didn’t know, I’m participating once again in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). I’ve been working on the prewriting for this year’s submission, and so far I have a title and a general idea of where I want the story to go.
I actually came up with the title before coming up with the story line. Sometimes that happens. The story developed out of the title, then it expanded. The working title is Country Fried Snob. I call it a working title because writing something as expansive as a novel is a living process. The title may change because the story may change as I write it.
Once I had the title, I decided to use the stories I was writing for a different project (People of Peanut City) which was a collection of short stories of all the crazy people I met when my parents first moved to Suffolk, Virginia when I was in college. However, I then decided to give Country Fried Snob its own original plot, using the idea behind People of Peanut City as a launching pad.
What clinched the basic plot for me was meeting the man that would become my Husband. Yes, that’s right, The Boy is the reason this story started in my brain pan. I used the original idea of a culture shock a person gets going from a city or metropolitan area to the country (even if they aren’t from a large city) and the setting of his hometown, Burnet, Texas and an idea struck me.
It grew from there, what would she do? At first, she was younger and was following her boyfriend. So, she worked at a local grocery store or coffee shop so she could be linked easily to the gossip of the town. But, that didn’t feel right either. So, then she was going to be a Graduate Student, but again, that didn’t seem to fit. Graduate programs fill your life, so I would have to work it into the plot a lot and that’s not what I was looking for. Then I realized, DUH, make her a blogger. But, a successful blogger. One who actually updates her blog regularly. This way, I can easily play with the style of writing and the format of the story.
But, there was another problem. What is going to happen to make it a novel and not just a bunch of ramblings of a crazy woman stuck in the country? Well, that’s easy, a love triangle. Roger, who is the main character’s husband, is a firefighter and has just come back to his hometown after more than a decade. How would he act. Of course, he’d sink right back into the wa he was before. He’d try to relive the past. This would take him away from his home and his wife frequently. That combined with the fact that Jenna, the main character (they finally have names, ya’ll!) feels out of place leaves an opening for wooing.
I’ve decided to add a new character to the mix. A young Doctor who comes back home to help his father with the family practice after spending medical school and the start of his career at a hospital in Austin. So, they bond over the fact that they don’t love the small-town life and the good Doctor not only has a grudge against Roger, but is a snake. So, he attempts to develop a relationship with Jenna while Roger is distracted re-living his glory days.
There will also be a bull named Fenton the Fancy, and he will be fancy. Probably.