Monday, October 31, 2011

On The Eve of NaNoWriMo

Midnight tonight.That's when it begins. 

National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) begins soundly at 12:01 am on November 1st.  Got my story. Got my characters. Got my outline.  I'm ready. Well, ready as I'll ever be.  I've been rereading writers I admire -- Neil Gaiman, Elizabeth Gilbert, Garcia-Marquez... Just to remind myself that someone else has done it before.  Writing a novel at all is pretty much an impossibility. I know. I've tried. Yet these people I've just mentioned have done it -- more than once, in fact.  Sometimes, it just takes a little push. Sometimes, it takes a common enemy.

And sometimes, it takes people just crazy enough to be willing gather together for the month of November to engage in some hellish, feverish tippy-tapping on the keyboard that we like to call NaNoWriMo.

Some things I'm going to keep in my head while I'm writing:
  • Keep going. Don't stop, no matter what
  • You cannot create art when you're busy crtiquing it or apologizing for it. You are not the world's literary book review section.  Write. Don't read.
  • Keep going. Don't stop, no matter what.
  • All first drafts are shitty first drafts.
  • Keep going, no matter what.

Armed with these little munitions, I will face NaNoWriMo head on and unafraid. Well, mostly unafraid.  OK, terrified, but I'm going to keep going, o matter what!!! Happy now?

Thursday, October 13, 2011

iCreative v.2.0

Someone needs to invent a software that creates ideas. No, I mean, creates them -- out of whole cloth -- from nothing.  Because as I sit perched precariously on the brink of my third attempt at NaNoWriMo, I have nary a one.  I can't write the novel I'm in the process of writing -- that breaks the rules.  So, I have to come up with something fresh and new.  I've consulted my brainstorming journal -- the one where I furiously jot down any wild-hair notions that pop into my brain.  But most of those ideas are either short story premises or creative non-fiction essay ideas.

I need a software where I can plug in three random things -- an avocado, a martini glass and the Tibetan book of the Dead, say -- hit "generate" and have the idea software grind them up into a plausible idea for a novel.  Then present me with the idea, preferably one that begins something like "It's about this guy/girl who...."

See, now that Steve Jobs is dead, I don't imagine anyone will be conceiving such a software.  I have considered sending the idea to Applied Minds, Inc., because those guys specialize in the business of "Wouldn't it be cool if...." But I don't have any connections there (otherwise, I'd have a job there, dammit!!!). If I had paid attention all those years ago, when my dad was trying to teach me how to write code, I might be able to do it myself now.  Of course, if I learned how to write code back in the mid-80s, I'd be living in the Silicon Valley, living off my Microsoft dividends.

Woulda, coulda, shoulda....

Anyway, I haven't given up.  There are still plenty of programming fish in the sea.  I'd happily give up the idea, just to have someone invent it so I can use it.

That's pretty much what I came here to say today.

I'll be posting later on the current NaNoWriMo adventure, if you'd care to follow me. Of course, if I don't gestate an idea between now and then, I may have nothing but 50,000 words of stream of consciousness. Which could be an interesting creative take in its own self.

Awesome graphic credit: "A BRIGHT IDEA" by OwaikeO (