Oh, you know. National Novel Writing Month. There's that crazy guy, Chris Baty, who lived in San Francisco in the 1990s. The last year of that decade, he and 21 of his closest friends decided that they'd have a better chance to get dates if they were also writers, so they got together in November 1999 and set out to write novels--one each--in a month. True story. And it worked so well that they did it again the following year, with more friends, and the year after that, and then they got onto the fledgling Internet and November hasn't been the same since.
Write a novel in a month, you say? Impossible, you say. Hogwash, I say. All you have to do is sit down in front of a keyboard (or a notebook, if you're old school, with a handy pen) and write 1667 words a day. That's it. That's all. Do that every day for a month and at the end of the month you'll have 50,000 words. A short novel is about that length, so it's entirely possible, if you're diligent and type/write reasonably fast, to write a novel in a month. I looked back at the stats on the Web site and discovered that I've iu fact done this four times; 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009. I actually finished the novels from 2006 and 2007, though to be honest, they weren't much to write home about. 2008 yielded No Accounting for Reality, which is still for sale right here and here (and yes, proceeds still go to Children's Hospital). 2009 started off badly and didn't end well, but I got half a manuscript out of it, and maybe something'll still come out of that.
So when Kevin reminded me that NaNoWriMo was about to start, it occurred to me that I wasn't exactly doing anything else at the moment, apart from moping around and not exactly writing. So I figured what the hell, and on Halloween Night I signed up for the 2012 edition. I solemnly swore I would show up, write my 1667 words a day, and just keep going no matter what. So far it's a jangled mess of long rambling statements about birthday dinners, Buddhism, the existence of God and running into Muslim men in awkward situations (in short, a lot like this blog; hm, could there be a connection?) but maybe it'll start making sense as I get further into it. As Julia Cameron said, many times in many different quotable ways that I can't call to mind right now, just show up and start typing. God fills in the rest. Good advice for life, too.
Anyway, if you're interested, check out the Web site and if you feel like jumping in, it's not too late. A friendly warning, though - don't start writing to publishers and agents in December. They pretty much aren't taking queries the whole month because of the holidays, and what with the hurricane and all, most of them are probably shut down until next year sometime. Always check the agents' Web site to see if they're taking queries before you send 'em, folks. Meantime, here's my cute li'l Writer Page link. 44,751 words to go!