The planning for next month’s NaNo was pretty much finished as of last week. I had a basic outline, scrawled on fag-packets, toilet walls and untattooed body parts, which I’ve been mind-mapping – in reverse order – one scene at a time. This lets me spot and iron out logic bubbles before they creep into the text when the time comes to write it.

I finally bought the bullet and bought a new computer after years of swithering and putting it off. It was second-user (i.e. a mongrel from many sources) so it had Linux installed. My initial plan was to cart it home, have a look at the operating system before ripping it out and installing Windows.

As it turned out, Linux nowadays is a damn sight more user friendly than it was in the days of slackware. I’ve had to install next to nothing – just a mind-mapping program, I think – and it worked perfectly, straight out of the box it didn’t in fact come in.

I’ve also been reading up on Victoriana – both fiction and non-fiction. I’ve never read Dickens before and I’m thoroughly enjoying ‘David Copperfield’. Same with Edgar Allan Poe. Since next month’s book is set in Victorian times, I’m immersing myself in that world, both the fiction and non-fiction on specific facets of Victorian behaviours and attitudes.

There are plenty of books available on Victorian life, certainly on the areas I’m researching just now and the fiction is an absolute delight. Poe is the master of description and Dickens’ humour sticks out a mile. On top of all that, I’m completely wallowing in the language and vocabulary of the period.

This is my first foray into steampunk. It’s an interesting genre, with its own rules and conventions, which I’m already planning to blaspheme against, every chance I get!