Minister's Study

Ministering, writing, and wrestling in a land flowing with sweet tea and deep-fried food

Thursday, March 02, 2006


November 1st

No, my title isn't some grade school taunt. It stands for National Novel Writing Month. And I've decided to take the plunge and write a novel this month.

*Shouting comes from the background, "Are you crazy?! A novel in a month?! Have you completely lost it?"*

Okay, in order. Yes. Yes, or rather, at least 50,000 words towards one. And no -- I don't think I ever really had it.

That's the challenge -- to write at least 50,000 words (about 175 pages, or a rather short novel) before midnight of November 30th. It's not as crazy as it sounds. I regularly crank out 1,000 to 1,500 words in 90 minutes for a flash challenge -- and that's starting completely from scratch, with no idea what the trigger, plot, etc. will be until I start. (Anyone interested in trying the flash challenges, swing by Liberty Hall in my links list to find out more -- but don't try to register without a reference.) To "win" NaNoWriMo, I only have to average a little less than 1,700 words of the same story each day.

"Why now?" you may ask. And the reason is that I have become aware that if I don't do it now, I may never do it. I think I have the skills to write a novel now, but if I don't put myself in a position where I have some sort of accountability and pressure to complete it, I probably never will. I've learned an awful lot about people and communicating with people through my study and practice of short fiction. I expect to learn more still through NaNo.

So what is my story? That's a good question. Maybe I'll let you know when I've actually got a little of it written, enough to have decided things like, "What genre is this, anyhow?" So I guess I should go do a couple things and start writing!

I'll occassionally post my wordcount here to give myself a little more accountability. Incidentally, my wife has been working on a little more sensible program with a much smaller group that intends to write a novel (or the requisite 50,000 words) over the course of three months. This is her last month, so we've got a little friendly competition going, a race to the finish line. You can check in on her progress at her space,

So sign my guestbook and cheer me on!


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