SennyDreadful's fault. Lord, I love that woman, but right now I want to reach across the pond (she lives in London) and shake her till her pearly whites rattle.
OK, not really. No one -- especially not a kooky gal in another country -- can make me do anything I don't want to. But I did, in a fit of sympathy and fellow-feeling, promise her that I would again endure the insanity that is National Novel Writing Month, aka NaNoWriMo. Starting on Tuesday, Nov. 1, I will strive to add at least 1666 new words to the very rough first draft of a brand new novel. I have a very vague idea of what it's going to be about, but no outline or snowflake, no cast of planned characters, no set ending in mind. No plot, no problem, is how NaNoWriMo works, or, as my good friend Jason Erickson has famously (because I made him famous for it) characterized it "Keep writing crap fast!"
I have won NaNoWriMo twice -- won meaning I have, in fact, gotten 50,000 words down within the month of November. The first novel/novella may be irrecoverable, though maybe someday I'll find a way to retrieve files from the moribund original tangerine clamshell iBook I wrote it on back in 2000. The second has morphed/warped into a giant seekrit project that maybe someday I'll be able to disclose to you -- a few of my closest friends know about it -- but now that it's a collaboration involving at least three other people, well. Yeah.
So I go into NaNoWriMo 2011 with a light heart. I know I can do it. I've done it before and lord knows I have enough ideas. But here's the thing.
I have a lot of other projects I need to be working on, too. One of which is seekrit but is going to be awesome (and yes, it's another collaboration; I'm addicted to collaborating I guess), and another, well, my publisher pulled the trigger on the publicity website for it this summer: Omi & Lulu. And those are just the serious for-sure projects. There are others. Like a script for a budding filmmaker buddy of mine. And two epic poems. And other stuff that's probably slipped my mind right now because I'm on weird pain meds.
For yes, I'm still having lots of trouble with my left elbow, trouble that renders me all but a one-armed woman while the damage heals.
Insert one-armed paper hanger references here.
So honestly, I'm not going to sweat it if I don't win NaNoWriMo this year. But I promised my gal Senny, and a few other friends who are gearing up to go into the trenches, that I'd at least give it another try. Because it's good to barf out that terrible first draft and just see what's right and what's wrong with my idea. And because misery loves company. And because November feels weird without it.
I'm K8E over there if anyone wants to add me as a writing buddy. Good luck, NaNos, and hey you non NaNos, you can do it too; it's not a show!