Sunday, October 02, 2011

It's coming...

October, when a young writer's mind turns to... Nanowrimo.

In less than a month, thousands of writers across the world will lay fingers on the keyboard and deliberately abuse their computer. Characters that have nagged and niggled all year will demand on-page time, will audition for a role in a half-formed story line. Scenery is becoming clearer, clothes and weapons developing nicely. Plots are slowly becoming more solid, with endings waving from a distance.

In less than a month, thousands of writers across the world will lay fingers on the keyboard and deliberatly abuse their native language. Passive sentences will be shrugged off, flowery prose marveled at, end-of-sentence prepositions ignored. Cliches will abound, adjective abuse perpetrated and word counts hedged.

The bottom lip of Grammar Nazis will tremble, eyes will tear up and palsied hands will desperately point out the faults; all to no avail as ambitious writers crush the dessicated remains of style guides in the pursuit of 50,000 golden words...

...until obstacles block progress: A plot that doesn't stand up to 50k, weak characters, lack of committment, no time, can't find a suitable space, something more interestng to do, like... housework, watching the grass grow, painting the garage, golf.

More than ninety percent of those who start will fail to finish, will fail to find time during the day to write 1667 words. For every reason of failure, there are an equal number of reasons for success.

Nano is manic; a rush at the beginning, followed by hard yards and finally a rush to finish. It's frustrating, beguiling, exciting, tiring and temporarily corrupts the space-time continuum. But to reach that 50k mark, and beyond, to finish a book fills a writer with an overwhelming and addictive sense of accomplishment.

What more could you ask of a month-long word fest?

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