Friday, November 14, 2008

Treading Water...

I'm about 20K into the NaNoWriMo challenge...there is also a kindergartner with a stomach virus in the house, a congested three year old, a baby fighting sleep, and a husband fighting off a bad cold...regular blogging should return post-recovery. As soon as I get through that Mt. Everest of sick, germy laundry....

Monday, November 03, 2008

Taking the Plunge

Do I dare? Do I have the willpower, the determination, the availability? Can I accomplish the marathon of marathons for we writing folk? Can I make it to the finish line for NaNoWrimo 2008?
I have no idea. 50,000 words in thirty days. Except, for me, it would be more like 27 days, since I was in the muck of finishing a short story draft and forgot that it was starting. And once I finished the aforementioned draft and remembered that National Novel Writing month had begun (this morning), I spent all day wracking my brain for the 'perfect' idea. My writing method just isn't a light bulb going off—I don't usually get an 'idea!' It's more like the sense of a place I want to communicate or a particular character who gets into my head or a vague scene or a snatch of dialogue that grabs me. Plot usually unwinds itself with the writing. And I am a slow writer. Ideas sort of sit in the crock pot of my mind for months before developing into actual stories. So all day I've been going over my scattered notes, trying to find that spark of life that pushes my fingers to the keyboard.
Eight hours later, I think I have it. I've never been through Nano before—I'm usually already committed to a project—but this year, I've just finished up a few short story drafts and have been ready to delve into something maybe the timing is right. Even if this idea doesn't turn into the perfect storyline, it's a chance for me to try to write without inhibition—because I revise and edit as I write my first drafts. It's so hard for me to just let it out...but with a deadline, I won't really have the choice of the turtle-route. You learn to write by writing and pushing myself to do this thing will, at the very least, push me out of my comfort zone. Wait. Did I say comfort zone? I meant rut.
So I'm going to try. I feel excited about it--it'll be great to get a solid body of work written in such a short time. It's very likely that I will be disrupted, but trying is better than not trying, right? So here I go...
Good luck to all of the other participants out there stretching those writing muscles!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Post-Halloween Craze

The spookable holiday was the real deal this year for the kids...even though the trick-or-treating isn't quite like it was when I was a kid, they still had a good time. My favorite moments?
Sean, walking down the street, yelling out "People! Turn on your lights! I want to trick-or-treat!!!" I, of course, immediately told him that it isn't polite to yell out things like that. His response? "But they won't hear me if I whisper!"
Another memorable kid-quote came from Christian, when one of Neil's co-workers took out his gross fake monster teeth...all wide-eyed, Christian said "OH. You have gum disease." Where does my three year old learn about gum disease? I have no idea.
And, of course, the morning after...I found Christian with his candy bag. He had taken all of the suckers out and unwrapped each one, making a small mountain of Blow-Pops and Dum-Dums and Tootsie-pops. I was all, "Christian! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?" He calmly reached over, picked up a Dum-Dum, and said "Here, Mommy. Try a blue one. They're really good." Like the gum disease has taught him nothing! Geez!
So, fun was had by all...including Kailey, who played the role of the sleeping baby with great skill. Personally, I just love a holiday that gives me permission to dress my kids up in cute costumes, show them off, and pays with bags of treats for me...