November 4, 2011 § Leave a comment
I am so ready to fall asleep.
I knew that keeping up the commitment while working a ten day retreat would be challenging, and here I am on the first goddamn day of the retreat, after working in the restaurant for the past twelve hours, and wondering how I’m going to do it.
Then I think about Haruki Murakami, who would work longer hours at the jazz club he owned, then come home and write at the kitchen table until he fell asleep on his arms.
Then I think about Stephen King, who I think was working two jobs and writing in the hours between.
I think somewhere between the days when I had five jobs, two bands and a fanzine and now I got really soft. Those days, if the clock ticked closer to midnight like it does now, I’d be thinking how many more projects I could get started before 4am when I might think about going to bed. Now, I think of my girlfriend asleep in the room and wonder what I’m doing down here, still in the restaurant, writing the first draft of a 50,000 word novel.
It’s definitely challenging me. I’ve always been a bit of a control freak and a bit of a perfectionist, which means that when I write something, I have an almost obsessive compulsive urge to re-read it a hundred times, each time making little tiny changes. I don’t tend to do that on my blog though, interestingly enough. You can probably tell.
But NaNoWriMo abhors the edit! Editing to NaNoWriMo is like a big sandwich to a gluten intolerant person! And so I must just write and write and write and do my best to ignore all the little changes I want to go back and make, because they won’t do a thing for my word count. In fact, when I do occasionally submit to the pressure, I end up deleting lines. I have one paragraph of about 50 words that are struck through, simply because I can’t bring myself to axe them from the word count. I’m waiting until I kick the daily limit’s quota by at least triple that before I’ll be happy enough to get rid of them and yet, they eat away at me.
And the funny thing is, here I am writing away when I could be writing my novel. 395 words that was, all in a few minutes. It took me about half an hour to write that many earlier tonight.
Ah, although I do love the challenge. There’s nothing finer than throwing oneself outside one’s comfort zone and into new and unchartered territory. That’s where I am now, the mysterious land of daily writing. I just might learn something from it all.
November 1, 2011 § 3 Comments
Well, it was a little uneventful.
I had a very busy day with domestic duties, mainly cleaning out a commercial cool room in preparation for a retreat Angie and I are catering at the end of the week. There’s nothing like throwing out mouldly, hidden away leftovers to get the creative (and digestive) juices flowing.
I finally got hunkered down just after 8pm to begin. I had a vague idea but not even a character name. I sat there and stretched and thought and refused to go online and finally the words started flowing.
It’s amazing how the writing process can work sometimes. I went from having no name for a main character to having four characters with names in under a minute. The story has already, in just over 1600 words, started forming in ways I hadn’t seen in my vague imaginative plotting over the past couple of days as well. My working title is Quiet. I won’t give much else away just yet, mainly because Angie is waiting for me.
At any rate, I’ve begun, which is a good, yet strangely intimidating feeling. It means I’m on the path, and one rule I made while walking the Camino last year was Never Go Back. Even with this busy month ahead, I’ll be getting to those 50,000 words if it kills me.
But for now, I have to finish writing November’s newsletter for Angie Gluten Free. A different but equally enjoyable kind of writing.