Thursday, November 4, 2010

Why Nanowrimo? Why now?

That's right, folks. It's November and guess what? Everything I've ever said about they say, never say never. In the past I've poo poo'd the whole nature of the beast. As in, why do I need to take a month out of my serious pursuit of being a novelist to crank out so many words of crap just because some stupid website arbitrarily declared this as a valid use of a writer's creative energy? I mean really. I don't need the good people at Nanowrimo to kick me in the butt to get me writing regularly. I'm pretty much always working on something new. As someone who stands firm in the belief that I have a "calling" to string together words in a coherent fashion so as to tell stories that are entertaining, meaningful, and relevant, I'm also convinced I must discipline myself to practice my craft each and every day, otherwise I'll fail. So why should November be any different than any other month?

Maybe it's just because Nanowrimo is cool sounding.

Now here's the thing. All other pursuits aside, my current workload looks like this: One novel out for submissions, meaning I've got one book (Matthew Newman) I feel is complete enough that I want to throw it against the wall and see if it sticks. Another book (Paramount) is completed in first draft, meaning I wrote a 100k-plus word "outline" that's waiting patiently for me to gather the courage to go back and face the reality of how terrible it might be. Such is the nature of first drafts. Finally, I've started another project (Piano Lessons) of which I'm at the mid-point in the construction process; as in, it's 45k words of drivel with no clue as to how I'm going to finish it up. Sounds promising. Hmmm...seems like I'm forgetting something. Oh yeah, there's this blogging thing I've gotten back into, and facebook, and the NBA season's just getting started (go Lakers), and the job I go to everyday that keeps me from living under a bridge. You'd think that would be about all my senile old brain could handle without putting me into catatonia.

So now, for whatever reason, I've decided to jump on this Nanowrimo band wagon. I've become one of "those people" I previously scoffed at as not being dedicated enough to do it on their own. For this I've decided to take on a re-imagining of my first attempt at novel writing. It's a middle grade book that started off basically as a memoir of my childhood and, of course, ended up with a paranormal bent to it. Why I've decided to revive this old chestnut is one of those questions of what do you do when you hear the Universe speaking. In my vast experience with life on this planet (ha), I may have finally learned that the answer to that question is: you listen. Besides, at this particular junction, I need all the distractions I can get my hands on as the rest of my life at the moment is...well...let's just not go there.

So I can do this. It's a challenge. It's going to push me to pick up the pace and write in a different style than I'm used to. And perhaps, at the end of the month I'll have another unfinished manuscript to keep my other projects company while I get my shite together. Like I've always said, you can't edit something that hasn't been written. At least I won't have that to worry about that anytime soon.

Hee Haw

No comments: