"I am at a loss to conceive how a man should permit himself to write anything that would be truly disgraceful to a woman, or why a woman should be censured for writing anything that would be proper and becoming for a man."

17 November 2011


Lack of updates generally point to one of the following:
- Inability to write, guilt over thus, and fleeing from any chance at flexing the writing muscles
- Lack of time to write due to insanity of life and/or work
- Illness
- Extreme apathy toward life in general and feeling like there's nothing worthy of writing about

Combine issues two and three, and that's basically the reason this time. I'm trying to be a dedicated mentor, passable worker, powerhouse novelist, and quasi-decent friend... and it's exhausting. It's just that time of year.

However, I wanted to take a moment to say that, while stressful, this has been one of my most fulfilling NaNoWriMo years yet. Why? I have an amazing collection of writers around me. In inspiring and encouraging them, I inflict the same wisdom on myself. When I feel like throwing in the towel just to focus on other things (including helping them make it through the month), I get energized by their passion. I'm finally getting a bit of the teaching bug, if you will, though I definitely do not have enough patience for that...
Mentoring, though, is damn satisfying. If I had more time to dedicate to it, I know there'd be even more worth sharing, even more rewards to give, even more encouragement to dole out, even more emails spewing variations of 'don't give up -- you can do it!'
I've always volunteered and given back to causes I'm passionate about in some way, but never with writing. It's such a (generally) solitary and isolating line, but it doesn't always need to be. Crawling out of our dark little writing cozies and chatting with each other, even consoling ourselves when nothing seems to be going right, is great motivation for retreating back into our own little worlds and continuing our journeys.

Also, it's great to be around literate people. Just, you know, for life in general.

Required link to fundraising page for NaNoWriMo for those who like writers and kids and books and reading (it's all tax deductible and I have swanky broke!writer rewards for any size donation. Any.Size.): Click here and show some love.

02 November 2011

NaNoWriMo Year Five: The NSFPureMinds Version

Or: What in the name of all that is sacred or profane am I doing?

There's something participating in National Novel Writing Month does to you, year after year: makes you fear for your own sanity.
Much as I love it, and proudly wear my writing geekdom with pride, and encourage (faithfully and truly) other people to participate, I acknowledge the mind-shattering marathon that is attempting to write a novel in a month. It is a crazy idea.
It's also a fantastic one.
It's magical.

(Yeah, I got caught up in the leprechaun nonsense of GLEE last night. I'm a sucker for blue eyes, a cute brogue, and a stunning voice. No apologies for it.)

Every year within the first few days I experience the trauma of the OMGWTFs. It can paralyze a writer to start contemplating the 'what ifs' and the 'why the hell am I doing this-es' and the 'everything I write is crap so why bothers' of it all. It can paralyze you at any time. The added pressure of thinking you have to complete something as massive as an entire novel in one month can daunt you into a fear spiral so dark it causes the worst possible black hole: the 'I can't do it so why even bother' hole.

You know what?
Fuck that hole.
Take a giant phallus of words and plug that hole up good. Show that hole the plot it's been missing. Use that hole up with great big sentences inspired by writing prompt, plot bunnies, song lyrics, and everyday objects like carrots and long glass tubes and staplers.
Screw that hole good by showing it you know best.
Then walk away from that hole, satisfied in the knowledge that you fucked it so well it exploded into the brilliant light of inspiration.
Then keep writing. All month long.

And THAT is your pornographic NaNoWriMo analogy of the week.

It's also about 300 words. That's a powerful amount of foreplay for starting work on your novel today.

Just to complete the inspirational mental screwing, here's a picture of Arthur Pendragon, wet, in front of a waterfall.

Yeah, you KNOW you can write something about that.

More Like This: