sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

November 1, 2006

panic ensues
posted by soe 3:23 pm

Today marks Day 1 of NaNoWriMo. Think positive thoughts for me.

Because I have to spend more time writing a novel, I may have to cut back on the amount of time I spend here with you. I will keep posting. Regular features, such as Three Beautiful Things and Into the Stacks, will continue to appear, although I cannot swear to the latter’s timeliness. But other posts may have more of a “AAAAAAACKKKKKKKKKKK!!!!!!!” feeling to them than before. And there will be less knitting content (although, for those of you who keep coming back for that, I do have my Socktoberfest socks that will be blogged about later this week), because I will have less time to knit.

Other November things to look forward to:

  • Concerts by James Taylor, Bob Dylan, and Brian Wilson
  • Running with Scissors, Stranger than Fiction, and A Good Year
  • A long Thanksgiving weekend in Connecticut
  • Election results (I’m staying positive here, people!)

I didn’t check my word count before I left for work, but when I got up from bed this morning, I did dutifully sit down at the computer and typed out my first paragraph. It’s something along the lines of three sentences. I wrote those 50ish words before I got the email from the NaNoWriMo folks who said I ought to aim for 2000-2500 words a day for the first week. After that I curled back up on the couch to whimper for a few minutes….

Category: nanowrimo. There is/are 6 Comments.

October 24, 2006

one week and counting
posted by soe 11:59 pm

Well, there’s one week ’til the start of National Novel Writing Month.

You’ll be pleased to know that I do have an idea for my novel. It could be 175 pages worth of idea. Let’s hope…

I’m going to write a mystery. The idea is the combination of a suggestion from Dad, current D.C. events, and general answers to my late night questions provided by Rudi.

I have a protagonist. I have a victim. I don’t have a perpetrator yet, but I’m sure I’ll be surprised as I go along.

My goal for the month is to write every day. I have lots of fun things planned for the month of November, so I’m not going to stress about the word/page count. If I get to 175 pages or 50,000 words, that’ll be great. But if not, that’ll be fine, too. I have a bad habit of abandoning things that I can see clearly aren’t going to work out, so I want to remove that impediment from the start. If my goal is merely to write something — anything — for 30 days, that seems accomplishable and easy to rebound from if I slip off the wagon. If I were to stick with the official rules and didn’t write the necessary 5 pages a day to stay on track, I could see abandoning the project after the first weekend in November.

So, I’m starting the typing exercises. Warming up the computer. Clearing the extraneous stuff from the schedule. But also keeping it realistic and fun and meaningful in the long run.

Category: nanowrimo. There is/are 2 Comments.

October 2, 2006

so apparently i’m writing a novel
posted by soe 11:55 pm

Peer pressure really does work. You all pretty much said I should take a stab at writing a novel during National Novel Writing Month (aka NaNoWriMo).

I still have no ideas for a novel and the clock is ticking. So if anyone has any plot devices, settings, characters, characteristics, themes, etc., that they would like to suggest and wouldn’t mind my stealing using, please drop them into the comments. Clearly any use within the novel will merit a public thank you.

I am signed up and ready to go on the site as “soe.” Please feel free to include me as a writing buddy. And if you’d like to be my buddy, leave me a comment here so I can link to you.

Jenn? Sarah? This would be your public invitation to join the fun…

Category: nanowrimo. There is/are 3 Comments.

September 27, 2006

posted by soe 1:16 am

Karen called me tonight to talk and in the midst of our conversation, she steered the topic to the impending arrival of November. I do not specifically recall if she mentioned putting pen to paper (or fingers to keys), but I did immediately know to what she was referring.

November is NaNoWriMo — National Novel Writing Month.

Karen reminded me that if I wanted to participate*, I’d better come up with some narrative devices soon.

You see, you aren’t supposed to start writing until 12:01 a.m. on Nov. 1. By 11:59 p.m. on Nov. 30, you should have 50,000 words and roughly 175 pages.

It’s not meant to be publisher-ready (or -worthy). It’s just meant to remind you that writing a novel sucks will leave you begging for sleep from Santa would find Satan devolved into a quivering blob of jelly by the end comes about only through perseverance. Or some crap like that.

The idea has its merits:

  1. Growing up, I wanted to be a writer. Somehow I did not imagine that my subject would be obesity or skin. Periodically, I jab myself back into action and write something for myself instead of for work. Sure, everyone in it has an abudant waist-line and psoriasis, but what of it?
  2. The name of this blog, a gift from Rudi two years ago, is Sprite Writes. Not Sprite Knits. Not Sprite Talks Politics. This might suggest Rudi was hoping I would channel my surpressed writer’s frustration onto this blog. And, yes, I do write here on most days. But that’s not really the same, now, is it?
  3. A month is a short enough period of time that one could, if one were disciplined (stop laughing!), stick to the program. The timeframe means that you *only* need to produce 6 pages or 1667 words a day. Provided you write every day. Without exception. Yeah….
  4. There are a couple of drawbacks to the idea, though:

  1. I do not have a plot or characters or a kernel of an idea for a novel. I have had a couple of book ideas recently, but they’re all of the memoir/long-form essay-style/series of vignettes sort of thing as opposed to a novel. Karen says she thinks I should just stick with the spirit of the thing, as opposed to the letter of the law and just write a book. I suggested that I could write an ode instead…
  2. I am not disciplined. I have difficulty remembering to go to work in the morning, let alone having to remember to write 6 bloody pages every day.
  3. Pretty much everything I’ve read from bloggers who have taken part in previous years means that if you already have a full-time job, you pretty much have to give up everything else in order to hit your word-count goal. Do I want to skip a whole month of parties and outings and blogging and knitting?

Yes, I realize that several of the negatives make me seem undedicated and shallow. Sadly, that doesn’t make them less relevant. It may explain, however, why I’m writing health literacy books….

So, what do you think? To write or not to write?

*Grey Kitten, Karen nominated you to join us on this odyssey, too, and told me to deliver the message. She says she has her idea ready and is just waiting for the company.

Category: nanowrimo. There is/are 7 Comments.