The 2014 NaNoWriMo decision is…

Tonight is surprisingly devoid of Halloween-related goodness. No scary movies until tomorrow, as Brianne has coursework to focus on. Trick-or-treating happened last night ’round these parts. I’m not feeling particularly motivated to dig out any scary video games or read any spooky stories. Oh, and I’m starting to feel sick but I think that’s mostly thanks to this awful warm-and-cold alternating weather (get your shit together, Mother Nature). I’ll chalk it up to the stars being in a funky alignment or some witch putting a particularly unimpressive hex on me and move on.

It’s NaNoWriMo Eve after all, and there are thousands upon thousands of writers all over who are currently full of anticipation and anxiety for the next thirty days of self-torment under the disguise of writing. After a fair bit of consideration, going back and forth on the topic, I’ve decided to not go for the crazy glory this year. If I’m not doing a great deal of writing already, I can only imagine how much additional stress and frustration this will produce.

Best of luck to everyone who does participate.

The question of NaNoWriMo revisited

I hesitate to admit this, but apparently it’s almost November already. I’m fairly certain it was mid-July just last week, but perhaps time has gotten away from me. At least I didn’t somehow miss Halloween. Yet.

November means NaNoWriMo, which I’ve brought up relatively recently(ish). It’s that special kind of self-inflicted torture writers endure/enjoy for one full month, attempting to produce a 50k word novel before November wraps up. This is only appropriate as The Thanksgiving Food Coma usually spells doom for writers who have failed to maintain a moderate to intense level of daily writing discipline throughout the month. Nothing about NaNoWriMo is easy, from balancing writing against other obligations to fighting against the madness-inducing 50k final word count.

This begs the following question: why in the Hell am I thinking about throwing all caution (and reasonable thought) to the wind and giving it yet another go? It would be in the shadow of the ass-kicking, brain-draining Hundred Days of Blogging (which is so close to being over but still so far away). The holiday shopping season will be upon us too soon, and I still happen to work in a retail setting that is going to get absolutely stampeded. There’s also the small matter of my birthday happening at some point next month, which I imagine will involve plenty of its own distractions as well. I’m still considering it, though. Not a damn clue why. Brianne posed a reasonable question in response to me voicing my interest in tackling NaNoWriMo: “Do you want to torture yourself?”

Perhaps? On one hand, it could be a good way to really kick-start my currently-unnamed novel project. On the other hand, I know too well that working under pressure usually doesn’t make for my best creative moments (although, to be fair, it’s hit or miss because sometimes it lends to me producing my best work). I think the answer will have to wait until November. Around midnight, November 1st. We’ll see where this ends up from there and then.

Rolling with the punches

Or writing with the punches?

It’s been an oddly hectic time in my life, which is terribly frustrating since I’ve been all “Huzzah, graduation!  Goals goals goals ideas plans” and then life responds with, “Hey, Phil.  I see you have goals, ideas, and plans there.  Let me piss all over them.”  The big issue of sorting out student loans has really punched me in the face, and then there’s other things that don’t bear mentioning here (It’s my misadventures in fiction, folks, not my misadventures in sorting out life; that’s far, far less interesting, and you should all be grateful I’m not making those posts here).

I’m reconsidering my plans for NaNoWriMo, if only because it’s not entirely conducive to what I’m aiming for (I need to try getting my work out there for publication consideration, and though the challenge is totally awesome and horrifying, it’s not really jiving with everything else at the moment; I’ll probably keep with it in some way or another because I’m terribly bull-headed).

Right now the biggest plan is to get “Death at Teatime” out there.  I’m thinking I might dust off some of the things from early-summer, fix them up, and then share them because I realized I have no actual samples of my fiction on here and that goes against one of the major points of this blog.

Thanks to my followers, and anyone who happens upon this blog otherwise, for your patience and sticking with what’s been relatively erratic updating and an unfortunate lack of content.  Also, sorry that I’m sort of not sorry for the post that’s to follow.

NaNoWriMo’s here.

NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month for those of us who aren’t particularly fond of acronyms (Hi, my name is Phil and I take issue with abbreviating shit down to silly little phrases), has arrived like it does every year.  I mean, November does show up around the same time, generally speaking, and it’s not only marked by the turning of a calendar page.  As a mildly unrelated side-note, calendars in question should be on November, not December, and so I’ve got to very politely, but very directly, ask you all to shut the hell up with your Christmas cheer and wait one more month.  Much appreciated.  Moving on.

There’s that deep, unshakable feeling of dread everyone who has ever participated in NaNoWriMo feels as it approaches.  It should be noted, by the way, that it’s already almost November 3rd, and I’ve made slightly less progress on this year’s NaNoWriMo than I have on working out my income tax-related business.  I wish I were joking.  However, have I lost hope?  Slightly.  Will I let that be the slaying of my writery-dragon-beast-nonfunctional-metaphor?  No, absolutely not.  I will use that as fuel to kick ass, take names, and write what I assume will be really slap-dash fiction in the name of testing myself and seeing just how close to the edge of madness I can get without falling in (short answer: I’ve already been there and back; got the t-shirt, had souvenir photos taken, and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone).

Here is my challenge to fellow writers: if you’ve never, ever tried National Novel Writing Month, give it a try.  Go for it.  I’m not saying hit the 50,000 word mark, as I’m well aware that life is full of unexpected impediments that leave us swearing and cleaning up messes and swearing some more (my life can, at times, be one long series of should-be bleeped expletives).  See where it takes you.  Maybe you’ll end up with something you look at and think, “Man, with the right editing this could be pretty neat.”

People who have been through NaNoWriMo before: join me in returning to it!  If you got to 25k words last time, go for 30k.  Or 40k.  Or maybe even the whole 50k.  Just give it another go, really, because misery loves company, writing loves company, and the two can be oddly synonymous with one another at times (except when there is bourbon involved in writing, in which case the only things suffering are grammar, spelling, and Microsoft Word’s spellcheck feature).

To those of you who started on time and are well into their National Novel Writing Month experience, I wish you the best of luck (with a side of “I hate you” because I totally should be where you all are at but I am instead sitting at the starting line with my metaphorical thumbs up my metaphorical nose).  To those of you who are in the same spot as me: let’s do this!  Updates will occur as possible, and I’m totally going to hit at least 35k this year because of reasons.

Edit, because I am le dumb: click here to visit the NaNoWriMo site for all the shiny information and encouragement you’ll need to get started.