July 9, 2008
I became motivated to write today…my novel stretched out it’s rough fingers and tapped me on my bare arm, saying, “Lady, your casual behavior toward me is an insult.”
My novel is right. I owe it something for giving me so much–purpose, understanding of self, exploration, a place to vent and weep and feel and love and create and drop my poise, reach for something, give something, move in trance, awaken, fulfill the ego, impress you, impress me, become bigger than the myriad parts that make me up, exist on screen, live on paper, hope for more, become fabulous, exude heat and charisma, receive insight, twist and turn and massage into accurate expression, perceive and be perceived, imagine my face on a slick jacket (what would my eyes say in that picture?), my name in bold along the seductive spine of the book itself.
Yes, little novel…I owe you.
November 4, 2006
I have full-fledged writer’s envy. Those who’ve taken on NaMoWriMo (see my post below “The Writing Life” for an explanation of what this is) are now 10+% done with their novels. Gads–it’s humbling to know that some people can write so fast. I’ve taken a look at some of the writing–and sure, some of it is junk…but some of it isn’t.
Hmmm…maybe this will be my November 2007 project.
November 1, 2006
So there’s this thing called National Novel Writing Month (or NaNoWriMo as it’s known to the hip writing crowd) that the blogosphere is all excited about this month. It is, in essence, a personal challenge that one takes on to write a complete novel (of at least 50,000) in 30 days. Obviously, the focus is on numbers, not good writing. In fact, the NaNoWriMo website says, “Because of the limited writing window, the ONLY thing that matters in NaNoWriMo is output. It’s all about quantity, not quality.” Eek! I can’t imagine writing a novel without constantly editing, thinking, tweaking.
But, for all of us would-be novelists, the idea is a seductive one. Write a whole book in only one month! Over 59,000 folks took on the challenge last year, and an astonishing 10,000 people finished successfully. Which leaves me to wonder what percentage of the 10,000 books that came out of this test are total garbage.
I thought about doing NaNoWriMo, but ultimately decided to pass. I actually enjoy agonizing over every word, taking the time to fully develop characters, picking out the one phrase that perfectly describes what is happening. To all of those writing their full novel this month, I say “Good Luck!” I admire your sense of challenge. You are brave. For those who make it to the end of November with a full novel, I even envy your accomplishment.
But, I’ll be doing what I do…writing a page a day, whittling away slowly at my Great American Novel.