Now Taking Requests

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I’m doing NaBoMoFo (seriously, what’s with these abbreviations? Could they be any harder to type?) this year. Basically, it means that I will write every single day in November on this blog. That site I just linked to is awful. Good luck trying to find any useful information on there at all. BlogHer, your FAQ is useless. I don’t care how to change my profile picture, I want to know about November’s blog posting month and all you have there is October.

I’ve tried National Novel Writing Month for the past few years and I’ve still never made it to the halfway mark, let alone finished. Two years ago, I wrote 15,299 words. Last year, I wrote a measly 5,385 words. I’ve actually regressed. Instead of failing again this year, which I surely would, I’ve decided to write here instead and keep track of my words at NaNoWriMo.

In the 22 days that have passed this month, I’ve written 22 posts, not including this one. That’s pretty good, yet, I have not posted every day. In the first two days of October, I published four posts, but there were a few days, mostly on the weekend, where I was a total slacker. Posting every day is hard.

It’s hard to find the time, but more importantly, there are some days where I go to write a post and nothing comes. I’ll look at all the prompts and nothing strikes me. I’ll read your posts, hoping that something you said will inspire me to write something and come up empty. I’ll go through my drafts folder to see if there’s a post in there that I can finish and nothing works. Those are the days that I don’t post.

I’m worried that I’ll have a few of those days in November. Normally, I don’t beat myself up over it. If I miss a day here and there, I don’t stress too much. If nothing strikes me today, there’s always tomorrow. But when I will force myself to write every day like next month, I fear that the self-imposed deadline will cause me to not think of anything at all to write about.

I’ve been kind of preparing for it in my own way. I’ve been compiling a list of things I could talk about if nothing else comes. I’d like your help. If there’s anything you’d like me to talk about, here’s your chance to tell me and I’ll put it on the list. I’m hoping that my list will be long enough that I’ll never feel blank.

Any requests? Prompt me, please.

The Art Of Blogging

Bugs does look awfully comfortable.
Bugs bunny, Looney Toons, Warner Brothers.

I haven’t been doing much of that lately. Well, it comes in spurts. Yesterday, I wrote and published two posts. Two in one day! Woot!

That’s actually quite rare. I’m usually lucky if I can manage one per day. I have a drafts folder full of half-started posts that will never go anywhere. I get distracted a lot.

Next month, is the dreaded NaNoWriMo. I’ve participated for a few years now and have never managed to finish. Most of the time, I don’t even make it to the halfway mark. I’ve come to the conclusion that maybe I’m just not a novel writer. Or, at least, I’m not a novel writer who can write a novel in only 30 days.

When I wrote my autobiography, I worked on it constantly. Every spare moment was spent working on it since it was a form of therapy. Even at that, it still took several months to complete and I don’t get that obsessive about creative writing projects. Well, I haven’t yet anyway.

Even when I have the total obsessive attention to spare for writing, I still can’t write a whole novel in less than a month. But I’ve come to another conclusion: that’s okay! I highly doubt that most of my favorite books were written in less than 30 days. Some books take longer to mature. I’m a turtle writer: slow and steady wins the race.

Bugs does look awfully comfortable. Bugs bunny, Looney Toons, Warner Brothers.
Bugs does look awfully comfortable.
Bugs bunny, Looney Toons, Warner Brothers.

Another excuse problem is that November happens to be a very busy work month for me with a family holiday at the end. Who decided November would be a good month to do this crap? I guess it’s as good a month as any, still…

Instead of attempting and failing to write another novel for NaNoWriMo, this year, I’m going to try something different. I’m going to participate in NaBloPoMo. It stands for National Blog Posting Month and the rule is that you post something on your blog every day in the month of November.

I just signed up at BlogHer, a site that hosts it. I think I did anyway. Honestly, their website is pretty awful as far as figuring out where to go and what to do. This morning, I requested an extension on that traffic ticket I got and a California government website was more helpful and easier to use with less error messages. Sadly, I’m not kidding.

Anyway, horribly laid out, super confusing site just signed me up and now I have a profile with nothing in it. I was going to add a badge for November NaBloPoMo, but I can’t find them anywhere. Seriously, what kind of site doesn’t have a search function on it?

This might be cheating, but I’m going to keep track of my word count at NaNoWriMo. I know it’s not a novel, but it still counts as writing, and honestly, I do get such a kick out of seeing my word count graph. I’d hate to give that up since it’s really my favorite part.

Picture 1
Failure in graph form!

That’s what I’m going to attempt this November. I’m not sure I’ll make it, but I probably have a better chance of posting something on my blog every day than I do finishing a novel in just a month. I’ll try to do a lot more flash fiction to make it seem not so much like cheating.

Flash Fiction Challenge

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Wallowing in my second NaNoWriMo failure, I decided on only the sixth day that I’m not a writer of novels. At least, not in the traditional sense. My 2012 NaNo word count sits idly somewhere around the 5K mark, where I have, for the most part, given up on it.

That said, in the last seven days, I’ve written three entirely adequate pieces of short fiction, one of which contains no three-letter words. Beat that with a stick. The week before, I wrote two little fictional stories. I realized that I’ve been writing little pieces of flash fiction all along without even knowing it.

For those of you who are wondering just what the hell flash fiction is, and I include myself in that number since I did have to look it up, here’s a definition from Wiki: “Flash fiction is a style of fictional literature or fiction of extreme brevity. There is no widely accepted definition of the length of the category. Some self-described markets for flash fiction impose caps as low as three hundred words, while others consider stories as long as a thousand words to be flash fiction.”

After I accepted my failure as a novelist, I noodled about the interwebbery and discovered a site that has 365 flash fiction prompts. Well, they’re not so much prompts as phrases to write about. I did the first one, Suitably Warm, today. I wrote it without using any three-letter words as the Daily Post prompt instructed, combining two challenges into one. I’m awesome like that.

The three short stories I wrote this week could be considered flash fiction in certain circles. 1,000 Words: The Last Picture is exactly 1,000 words because I was being a smartass with the prompt. Revisionist Fish is 667 words and Suitably Warm: No Three-Letter Words is 480 words. All three of those sort of fit within the very vague definition of flash fiction. In fact, nearly every single piece of fiction on this blog could be considered flash fiction and there’s quite a bit of it. The shortest story I wrote was in response to a prompt that had me “Write a 100-word story without using the letter ‘e’ in any words.” That one was a bitch.

I’m not fond of watching word counts. Part of the reason I have a hate/love (mostly hate) relationship with NaNoWriMo is word counts. You’ll be cruising along writing something and thinking it’s awesome. You save and update your online word count only to realize that you wrote 600 words. The word counter slaps you across the face and says you need to write 1066 more words to finish on time, otherwise, you won’t finish until January 30, 2015. Well, crap. NaNo does not take quality into consideration. It only eats words in bulk and I’m not really a bulk writer.

I have no intention of writing exactly between 300 and 1,000 words for each prompt. I hate word counts and I refuse to be beholden to them. I will write as much as I have to say on a subject and that’s that.

Now, I know how I am with setting daily goals for myself. It’s just not going to happen really. I’m not going to force myself to write something every day because that is a surefire way to set myself up for failure. 365 prompts may take 795 days to write, but that’s OK. I will do the best I can while still answering Daily Post prompts and writing all the random crap that clutters up my brain anyway. I added a category called 365 Flash Fiction Challenge to keep track.

This might be a lame excuse not completing NaNoWriMo again, but it’s really not intended as penance. It’s just that I think I can do it as long as I have a fire under my buttocks and something awesome might come from it that is not a novel. You never know.

NaNoWriMo Day Six

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I’m beginning to come to the conclusion that I’m just not a writer of novels.

There is definitive proof that I’m not a writer of novels. On my hard drive, you will find countless half-finished (or half-started) books. I have never completed one. Like ever. The only book I have ever finished was my autobiography and that was easy since I didn’t have to make anything up.

The book that I have started for NaNo is a mess. I’m not just saying that to be self-deprecating. Really, It’s a total mess. There’s no structure. It hops around all over the place. It doesn’t even have a consistent time signature, let along a consistent plot structure. I’ve basically been writing whatever it is that comes into my head, which is a lot of words that don’t really go anywhere.

It could be a good book. It’s got good characters, an interesting world, drama, conflict, humanity, tragedy, unicorns. Alright, it doesn’t actually have unicorns, but it might if I keep writing the way I have been. Hell, my main character, was only added in the third draft. You read that right. I added the protagonist, only the most important person in the entire book, in the third goddamn draft. You don’t want to rush these things.

My horrible novel in picture form. This is now the third time I’ve managed to use this picture on this blog. MUTHAFUGGINWIN.

Sigh. The problem that I, goldfish of faulty memory, have with writing longer works is that I can’t remember what I’ve written. I keep having to refer to what came before. Inevitably, when I do, I find something I want to change. Sometimes, it’s just elaborating on something I wrote. Other times, it’s changing the entire plot.

Imagine that you are a normal person. I know it will be hard, but try. Now, imagine than your brain is crushed by a Tyrannosaurus Rex (or something equally capable of crushing). You survive, but your brain is about as useful for thinking as Swiss cheese. With what’s left of your cheesy brain, attempt to write 50,000 consistent, engaging words that relate to each other in a coherent narrative structure with multiple characters that do and say things the whole time in in a way that slowly builds to a resolution. See what I mean?

T-Rex v. Unicorn. FIGHT!
(Image from Guardian.uk)

With my memory, it’s almost impossible to write something longer than a few pages. I can’t just write with abandon. When I do, I end up with 5,385 words that have as much relation to each other as Tyrannosaurus Rex and unicorns. They’re both mythical creatures that are no longer extant on earth (maybe).

Perhaps I’m a short story writer and not a novel writer. I’m alright with that. Some great authors have written amazing short stories. I think I can handle the short story. I love the short story. Maybe I should just write a short story anthology instead.

I’m definitely not telling y’all this for encouragement. I know I’m a good writer. I know I can put together sentences with flair, drama, tragedy and unicorns. I know that, if I had all the time in the world, I could probably put together a proper book. It’s just not going to happen if I force it like I have been. It’s just not going to happen in a month.

NaNoWriMo Day One

NaNoWriMo

I started off today with a bang. I I wrote over 1700 words straightaway. And then I read it, like an idiot. The original short story on which I’m elaborating was in first person. I continued in that vein, and after reading it, I decided that I don’t want to write in first person.

Why don’t I want to write in first person, you ask? Excellent question, reader. I don’t want to write in first person because I don’t want to use the plot I decided on at all. Like, any of it. Well, some of it might stay the same, but I’ve come up with a new plot. So, I scrapped all 1700 words I wrote as Version A.

Then I started Version B and wrote 558 words on that before I decided to scrap that, too. Out of the blue, I wanted to add another character and start off from that perspective. And then I changed the plot again, only slightly this time.

Then, on to Version C. Version C has a very tentative outline. In addition to which, I’ve written 1617 words of the story. Mid writing, I changed course again and had to go back and mildly edit. However, fingers crossed, I believe Version C is the winner… right now… at this moment… for the time being. The good news is, there are only 26 letters in the English alphabet.

If I had managed to get it straight from the beginning (an improbable, but not impossible task), I would have a decent story going by now. As it is, I wrote 3897 words today (over 4000 if you count this silly post) and well over half of them were for naught. Yay!

How’s your NaNoWriMo experience going?

CRAP! It’s November Already!

NaNoWriMo

How in hell did that happen? Today is Halloween (which I had forgotten about), which means tomorrow is November, the start of National Novel Writing Month (which I had forgotten about).

First, Happy Halloween, even to those of you in countries that don’t celebrate it. Halloween is the best of all holidays. It involves chocolate and zombies. That’s really all you need to know.

Second, NaNoWriMo. GAAAAAAAAAAH!!!! I keep thinking all year, I should really think about what I’m going to write for NaNoWriMo this year, until all of a sudden, it’s tomorrow. This is bullshit. Someone sent the clock forward.

I tried doing it last year and mainly failed. I started out writing a novel. Early on, I realized there wasn’t enough meat for a novel, so it became a novela. I gave myself the self-imposed goal of writing 30,000 words instead of the 50,000 NaNoWriMo requires to win. I couldn’t even manage that. I wrote about 15,000. That’s horrible. I barely made it halfway and haven’t touched it since.

Last year, I tried taking an idea and turning it into a book. It didn’t work out all that well. This year, I’ll try taking a short story that I wrote on this blog called Life In The Hub and turning it into a book. Hm. Doesn’t sound too promising, when I put it that way, does it? Whatever. We shall be soldiering on. All for one, one for all. Or something.

Anyone else participating this year? Want to be my buddy? Let’s encourage each other in failure! Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a lot of groundwork to do for tomorrow.

FoG’s Completely Different 2011 Year In Review Post

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Year In Review posts are so passé and trite and boring, Sidney. Boring. These are so, like, totally everywhere now, but I’ll do one anyway. It will be completely different from everyone else’s, mostly because it is mine.

Post A Day

I started doing The Daily Post‘s Post A Day thing. I did not post every day. Here’s what I did manage to write:

January: 32 posts.
February: 16
March: 10
April: 4 (eek)
May: 20
June: 14
July: 16
August: 10
September: 19
October: 15
November: 10
December: 11

Total posts in 2011: 177

That doesn’t add up to 365.  Even if I’m really bad at math, that doesn’t add up to 365. I’m pretty sure that the month of April has more than 4 days in it.

Still, I probably wouldn’t have written a lot of those posts if it weren’t for the Post A Day thing, so there’s that.

2011s Top 5 Most Popular Posts

You people have some strange taste in reading material:

1. Natural Disasters
Posted February 1, 2011. 2,749 views. Most of those views were in the first two days when this post was promoted to Freshly Pressed.

2. Well-Known Facts: World Record Mammal Edition
Posted July 1, 2011. 2,507 views. This one was really popular for a while due to a ton of people searching for maps of Africa. Feeling guilty about people looking for facts and ending up at my not-so-facts, I took out all of the references to Africa and the views dropped down to a normal level.

3. Are we too dependent on technology?
Posted July 22, 2011. 1,946 views. I’m not quite sure why this one is viewed so often, but a lot of people search for “are we too dependent on technology?” I find it amusing that so many people are using technology to ask if we’re too dependent on technology, but what do I know.

4. Dear Goldfish Part 2
Posted September 29, 2011. 1,503 views. Again, I have a sneaking suspicion that this one is viewed a lot because of people looking for maps of Africa. I have three of them in this post, none of them helpful at all.

5. A Fictional Character I’d Like to Hang Out With
Posted January 12, 2011. 1,292 views. I chose Spider Jerusalem as my fictional character and the people over at WarrenEllis.com appreciated my thoughts on the subject enough to feature this post on their front page.

Top 10 Personal Favorite Posts

In the order that they were written:

Detroit, My First Love.
A love letter to my hometown.

The Zoo.
I don’t write poetry with good reason. That reason being, I suck at it. But I was trying to take a nap one day and The Zoo kept poking at my brain. It wouldn’t let me sleep until I wrote it down. It’s certainly not great, but I’m rather fond of it since it is the only piece of poetry I’ve ever written that doesn’t immediately make me cringe.

The Onion.
This is sort of cheating since this post wasn’t actually written in 2011. It was posted on this blog in 2011 though, so I think it counts. This is a real conversation I had with a friend of mine. Even though I’ve read it a million times at this point, it still makes me laugh every time. Not many things can do that.

The Category of Parades.
A story about how I denigrated someone’s belief in astrology at a dinner party. This is why I shouldn’t attend dinner parties.

On Being Dead.
This post describes my childhood battle with meningitis. I’m not sure it would mean anything to anyone else, but it was cathartic for me to write it.

Furious Spurious Lexis.
The Daily Post told me to make up a word and its definition. I didn’t stop at just one word. Some of these are good and should be used right now.

The Missing Shoe.
A story which I won’t reveal as either fiction or non-fiction. You’ll just have to decide for yourself whether it’s true or not.

The Night That Changed My Life.
Another cathartic story. This one is as true as I can remember.

Well-Known Facts: American History Edition.
My favorite of the Well-Known Facts series. I plan on doing more historical editions in the future. That is, I will write them in the future, not that I plan to write futuristic history. Although, that’s not a bad idea…

Love Letter To Los Angeles.
I love this post for some reason. It makes me want to get in my car and drive around LA. It’s not often that I talk about the city in which I currently reside. I’m probably too close to it to really see it.

New Series

I started a few new series on the blog in 2011. First, there was the Well-Known Facts series, which is as ridiculous as I am. I can’t really remember how this started. I think I was just bored one day and decided to make things up. Anyway, there are nine well-known facts posts now and I’m sure there will be more as I can’t seem to stop the shenanigans.

Then we have Dear Goldfish, a series where I answer search terms that people have used to find their way to this blog. I’ve always been fascinated by the stats page here and I used to write posts about silly search words. Somehow, the search word posts morphed into Dear Goldfish where I throw a question mark on the end of real search terms and answer them as if I’m Dear Abby.

Plus, I continued hating many things in the Things I Hate series. Hate will never die.

NaNoWriMo

I attempted to write a novel in the month of November. I failed. I did write over 15,000 words on a book that didn’t exist in anything other than character sketches and outlines before that, so I’m still pretty proud of myself. My reflections on the process can be found starting here.

Landmarks and Conclusions

• I joined the Atheist Blogroll in 2011.

• One of my posts was Freshly Pressed (featured on the front page of WordPress).

• I broke 300 posts and wrote about the things I learned. I’m currently 40 posts (39 if you count this one) away from 400 posts.

• I wrote and posted six short fiction stories on this blog in 2011.

• I’ve only ever written one post about my cat. Since I got a dog in April, I’ve written three posts. Apparently, I’m a dog person.

• I didn’t read nearly as much in 2011 as I did in 2010.

• I failed at Post A Day. I failed at NaNoWriMo. But I tried both.

• I didn’t post as much this year as I would have liked. I didn’t write as much as I would have liked. But I did write and I did post, so that’s got to count for something, right?

2011 Haiku

And just so that my Year in Review post is completely different from all the rest:

Here is a Haiku.
For every month this year.
Whoopity-do-da.

January
First month of the year
Unemployed and so depressed.
non compos mentis

February
I’m a breadwinner!
Reason to get out of bed
I have got a job.

March
Another friend died.
Bought lots of ammunition.
Two discrete events.

April
A curse on your house.
In the form of a puppy.
Gah, total chaos.

May
Well-Known Facts is born.
The lies and shenanigans
just keep on comin’.

June
Another birthday.
Meh. Surely feeling older
but not much wiser.

July
Reconnected with
old friends. I’m not sure why they
found me July.

August
I do not recall
what happened this month at all.
Must have been special.

September
Puppy became dog.
Summer turned into autumn.
I hated more things.

October
The Halloweenies
At my door again. Take some
sweets and go away.

November
It’s NaNoWriMo.
Fell farther behind each day.
Novel writing FAIL.

December
Ugh, the holidays.
Don’t you have homes of your own?
Too much social stuff.

NaNoWriMo Week 4

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I suppose it’s time I admit that I’m not going to make it. I’m not even going to make it halfway. So far, I’ve written 13,743 words on my novella. While that’s nothing to be ashamed of, but it’s a far cry from the 50,000 words required to complete the NaNoWriMo challenge or even my own challenge of finishing this book with an estimated 30,000 words by the end of the month. I think I always knew deep down that I wouldn’t make it, but still, it’s hard to give up hope.

Not to make excuses, but this has been a horrible month for me time wise. The first week, I had a deadline at work that sucked up all my time and energy. Last week, I had an unexpected house guest who came to attend an unexpected funeral. This week, I had an unforeseen project handed to me at work that has to be finished by next week. Aside from the duties of my employment, I’ve been running all over hell and gone with fool’s errands that I won’t bother detailing here, but suffice it to say, I haven’t had a lot of time.

I know, I know. You have to make the time, but when you’re working a full-time job with two deadlines in one month, you have to handle the normal and the unexpected details of living, and you come home to find a house guest, well, it doesn’t leave much room for writing. All things considered, I’m rather proud that I’ve gotten as far as I have. Last weekend, I set a goal for myself of writing 15,000 words by Sunday and 20,000 words by today. That would have put me well on schedule to make my 30,000 word, self-imposed goal by the end of the month. Instead, I haven’t written a thing since Day 19 and I haven’t even broken 15,000 yet.

Not only that, but I’ve been totally neglecting this blog. I haven’t written even a single post in six days. Six days! I haven’t let my blog lay fallow for so long since the first year I started it. The good news is, I have lots of ideas floating around my head. The bad news is, I haven’t had the time to write any of them down. I’ve let the book thing get in the way of daily life so now, it’s a stormy little raincloud hanging over my head. It is an albatross around my neck, a stone of shame. I’m trying not to see it as such, but failure is never easy. I can’t wait until this month is over.

I even added the little NaNo widget thingy to my sidebar over there hoping that it would motivate me more if the whole world could see my progress (read: failure), but so far, all it’s done is remind my of how miserable this month has really been. Anyway, I just thought I’d pop in to say hello to my failful readers. (I actually meant to type “faithful,” but it came out “failful” instead.)  I haven’t forgotten about you. What’s going on in your world? Have I missed anything? You’re looking smashing today. I really like your pajamas. Are those new? Cheerio and toodle pip for now.

More NaNoWriMo:
Week 1
Week 2

Week 3
Progress

NaNoWriMo Week 3

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I broke 10,000 words on my book last night. Woot! 10, 894 to be precise. Unfortunately, we’re over halfway through the month, which means I should have written 30,000 words by now. And even more unfortunately, I forgot my book at home today so I can’t even finish the chapter I was working on last night. Harrumph.

I have written three chapters so far, the last of which is still missing some meat. There are seven chapters in this book, possibly eight, depending on how I decide to end it. If I do decide on eight chapters, the last will be more of a footnote than a proper chapter, so it doesn’t really count.

Since NaNoWriMo is about quantity over quality, let’s crunch some numbers. I’ve written nearly 11,ooo words in three chapters. The last chapter needs another thousand or two words to finish it. Let’s err on the side of plenty and say it needs another 2,500 words. That means there are approximately 4,500 words per chapter. The first two chapters were about that long as well. Adding seven chapters up, that puts me at a whopping 31,500 words total, which is far from the 50,000 words required to finish NaNoWriMo.

What this means is that I am writing a novella, not a novel. This story, while (I think) interesting, just doesn’t have enough plot to stretch it out to 50,000 words. Any more than 30K would just be unnecessary filler. There’s nothing wrong with short novels. For instance, Elie Wiesel’s critically acclaimed Night has 109 pages. For the sake of argument, an average book has 200-300 words per page. I’ve read that book and the font is big and widely spaced. Even at a generous average of 300 words per page, that’s only 32,700 words in the whole book.

One of my favorite books, One Day In The Life Of Ivan Denisovich, has 158 pages. At 300 words per page, that’s 47,400 words. Even Solzhenitsyn wouldn’t have finished National Novel Writing Month with that book and I’m not sure that he wrote it in just a month. The point is, One Day doesn’t need any more words. Another 2,600 words would be superfluous. It is perfect as it is.

I could fudge it and add in an extra 20,000 words for no reason at all, just to finish, just to be a “winner,” but is there really any point in cheating? It’s not as if I get a book contract or money or even a prize if I complete the challenge. I’m doing this for me, not for any sort of web badge. There are people who claim to have finished on the very first day. How could you possibly write an entire novel, 50,000 words, in just over 21 hours? I think that’s cheating. The whole point is to challenge yourself to write, not to post something up there that is already written just to get a silly web badge and call yourself a winner.

Does it bother me that I might have a completed book by the end of the month, but that book won’t be long enough to qualify me as a “winner” of NaNoWriMo? Not really. I mean, it does irk me somewhat that I could have a completed novel from soup to nuts by the end of the month and still not qualify as a winner of the challenge, but the thing is, I could have a completed novel from soup to nuts by the end of the month. A completed novel, or a novella, as the case may be. I don’t have anything like that right now. I have a completed autobiography which is well over 50K words. I have completed short stories. I have this blog. But every single work of fiction in book form that I have started has remained unfinished.

I know exactly where this novella of mine will end up; I just don’t know exactly how it will get there. I’m winging it. It has already greatly changed since I wrote down character sketches many months ago. And the outline I wrote? Pfft, I have barely even looked at it.  I know the destination and I’m a third of the way there. I just have to fill in the middle and I’ll be done. Done.

This Novel Writing Month thing is certainly a challenge. It’s far greater a challenge than I originally thought it would be. But I’m going to keep plugging away at it. If I don’t finish in time, if I don’t write 50,000 words, so be it. Regardless of what their goals are, mine is to finish this novella as close to the end of the month as possible. I have roughly 20,000 words to go.

More NaNoWriMo:
Week 1
Week 2
Week 4
Progress

NANoWriMo Update

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I should just be writing my book, but instead, I’m writing this. I know how much y’all care about my progress and I hate leaving you in the dark, my stalkers.

Last week sucked. In every conceivable category or quantifier of suck, it was off the charts. I hope I never meet another week like it. I have a deadline every month and a half or so at my job. Generally, I know what it is well ahead of time. Every other time my deadline has been moved, which is most of them, it’s been moved back. “Hey, congratulations! You have another week to get your work done!” Yay! Not this time. This time, my deadline was pushed forward by two weeks. Two weeks less time to do my job. Now, that’s awesome.

So, yeah, I was a little busy, a little stressy and a little bit homicidal. And right in the middle of week of suck, NANoWriMo started. Excellent timing. But, as I discussed last week, it couldn’t hurt to try. It never hurts to try, unless you’re trying to hurt yourself. Then it might hurt. Generally speaking though, trying isn’t considered a painful thing.

I tried. I wrote 1,312 the first day. Wooo!  Then I wrote nothing on the second day, the third day and the fourth day. Deadline, don’t you know. Finally, the fifth day fell on a Saturday–the Saturday after I actually made my deadline with an hour and a half to spare, because I rule.

There’s no reason not to write on a Saturday morning, so I did. I wrote another 2,731 words, doubling the amount of words that I wrote on the first day. Go me! Except for the fact that I’m still behind and falling farther behind with every passing day. Now, here we are on day 8 and my stats look something like this:

Damn, those stats are evil. How is that encouraging? I suppose, if you actually don’t have deadlines and every day is a Saturday morning, it might be really nice to see that you’re on or above par, but for the rest of us, struggling to find an hour here or an hour there of uninterrupted writing time, well, that sucks.

I refuse to allow their discouraging stats to discourage me. At this rate, as much as I hate to admit it, I probably won’t finish my book by the end of the month. I just don’t have the time right now. It sounds like a lousy excuse–it is a lousy excuse–but there you have it. I’m going to keep trying though. Even if I don’t manage to finish in time, I’ll still be farther along on this book than I was in October. Take that, NaNoWriMo, ya bastards.

Update to the Update

I wrote some more tonight, so now I’m no longer desperately far behind; I’m just very far behind. At least I’ll finish in January now. Sadface.

More NaNoWriMo:
Week 1
Week 3
Week 4
Progress