Monday, November 28, 2005

Please, sir or madam, will you read my book?

Well, there's good news and bad news.

The bad news: I haven't quite reached the National Novel Writing Month goal of writing a 50,000-word novel in November.

The good news: If I write about 14,833 words for the next three days, I'll make it no problem.

I knew I was going to have trouble reaching the goal to start with, but once my son decided that November was the month he was going to stop napping on a regular basis, I didn't have much luck.

I'm still going to work on it, though. There are parts of it that I like quite a bit, which is saying something, since I usually am not fond of much that I write.

Maybe I'll make it a project to tackle in earnest in the new year. That way I won't have to make exercising and losing weight my new year resolution.

Pretty sneaky, eh?

The longest story I've done was just about 50,000 words, and I wrote it when I was in high school. Those were the days when I could go home and knock out 10 or 12 pages in an afternoon.

Not having a social life will do that for you.

But then, what's my excuse now? I'm still not a social butterfly.

I think there are two problems:

1. I edit way too much while I'm writing. I've read in book after book on writing that you should really just let the editing go. Wait until it's actually done before you start worrying about it. I have a hard time doing that. Spending 5 years as a copy editor didn't help that much, either.

2. I tend to get more interesting in the process of writing than the actual writing itself. I spend so much time preparing (because I don't want to have to stop to look something up) that I seldom actually do any of the writing I want so much to do.

3. I'm lazy; it's a lot easier to play a videogame or watch a crappy movie.

4. I can't count very well.

I'd give it up and save myself the aggravation if I could, but I can't not write. It's always in my head; it's just a matter of taking the time to get it out on the page. It got to the point where I'd get headaches if I didn't write for an extended period of time.

I love the feeling I get after I have one of those long writing sessions -- it's like I'm not even doing anything, just reading the story that's appearing on my screen.

And yes, I know that this entry could've been 400 or so words on my story instead.

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