Sunday, December 03, 2006

Oh Woe, NaNoWriMo

Wow, that NaNoWriMo internet writing challenge to create a novel in a month was a real adventure. There's nothing like the exhilaration you feel immersing yourself in your own imagination, creating characters and situations that seem almost as real as real life.

Though I did reach 50,000 words, thus becoming a "winner", my work is by no means ready for public consumption. Too many things "evolved" between the beginning and the end. A character who might have been svelte and handsome at the beginning became hulking and ugly by the end, not because it was part of the plot, but because I did not have time at the end to check what I had written at the beginning.

Even the genre changed. It started out as a romantic mystery, for which I thought I could enlist my wife Wendy's help since she's a huge fiction fan, of romantic novels in particular. But her opinion after reading the first few chapters was, "This isn't something I normally would read." She said if I were writing romance, I needed to include more hand-holding, loving gazes, and long walks.

Screw that! So my novel changed to a mystery-suspense-thriller that included a climactic bar fight and car chase. And I no longer let my wife proofread the chapters. There are still romantic elements, so I figure my novel has cross-over appeal. I even included a cat among the story's protagonists, in case the folks from Disney think about adapting it to the screen. I left no literary stone unturned.

The working title and tagline are Return to Salem--A beautiful young woman must uncover the secrets of her past to reveal why she is being stalked by mysterious strangers. Doing so unleashes a chain of events that ends in an apocalyptic battle between good and evil.

Cool, eh. Anyway, that's how I've spent my last month. It's kept me so busy I had time for little else. While my adjacent neighbors have been putting up all kinds of colorful Christmas decorations, my yard and home remain unadorned. Since I did have time in October to construct an elaborate Halloween yard display, my neighbors probably figure we're a family of satanists.

And neither is this blog the official end of my hiatus, since I continue to have computer and internet access problems. In fact, in the final days while I was rushing to complete my on-line NaNoWriMo, my computer screen would suddenly freeze up and the hard drive would whir to life. That lasted for a few minutes before I was able to continue. Maybe my computer was doing his own NaNoWriMo, or maybe he thought I was working him too hard . . . I don't know.



Anonymous cassie-b said...

Looks like you got a little sp@m on your first comment. Dontcha just love it?

Congratulations for finishing with your NaNoWriMo internet writing challenge. And best of luck with your computer problems.

3:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hopefully your tech problems get fixed soon, Dave. Your wit and observations have been missed, so perhaps 2007 will have better "pc luck" in store for you. Congrats, nevertheless!

12:32 AM  
Blogger Paul said...

Ah...there you are. Back again. The book sounds interesting. That's all: just interesting. But it takes a lot of work to finish things like that. Kudos to you.

11:47 AM  
Blogger Fred said...

Computers can be such hard work. With my three girls, it's a constant battle to keep them up and running.

Leave the Halloween decorations up through Christmans. That'll keep 'em talking.

1:11 PM  
Blogger OldHorsetailSnake said...

Computer was simply protecting you from overwork. Think nothing of it.

2:07 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Hi Dave,

Nice to see you're up and about again. A female lead, huh? Hmmm.

Congrats on "finishing"...a rough copy is better than nothing, and with only a month to finish, you should pat yourself on the back. Some people take years to complete a book.

By the way, you have great aspirations...always pays to think about the future! Hey, you never know.

Take good care,

7:25 PM  
Blogger Michael said...

Nice to hear from you again... the book does sound interesting. Any literature that includes bar fights and car chases can't be all bad! ;-)

12:11 PM  
Anonymous Maria said...

A family of satanists! Aha, I knew it along. I don't give a darn, I am just glad to have you back blogging.

I admire your efforts at writing. Now are you going to put this novel on the back burner and let it stew for awhile before coming back to work on it?

Sounds like you have a good one

2:16 PM  
Anonymous squirrel said...

Congrats on the writing! Good to see you here even if it is just for a moment.

9:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm Sophia,
from Oceania ,
and I'm 21 y.o

Hi, All
I've studied English sinse this Summer .
It's Really difficult
I want like to meet peple and practisice My English with them.

Thank You

6:21 PM  
Blogger Teri said...

Good for you Big Dave! I look forward to your near future with decent internet status. ;)

Ciao for now...

3:14 PM  
Anonymous Terri said...

Hey...welcome back....didn't realize your project had ended and just popped by.
50,000 words in a MONTH? Now that's a feat! Sounds like you have a great first draft here....and the title really has me intriqued.....SALEM? What's that in reference to? You might know...I grew up in Salem, Mass...the witch city.

6:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


It's wonderful to "hear" from you again. :) Congrats on reaching your goal!

Your book sounds interesting!

Sounds like your computer might be over-loaded with spyware. Have you tried something like AD-aWARE?

2:21 PM  
Anonymous schnoodlepooh said...

Welcome back! I'm glad you had an adventure and thanks for including a cat, but I would rather have had it been a dog. hahahahaha!!! You still have time to get those christmas lights up. You don't want to get kicked out of your neighborhood.

7:55 PM  
Blogger bornfool said...

Proud of you, Big Dave. Of course i would love to read your NaNo novel but I understand if you bleieve it's not yet ready for public consumption. My NaNo novel from last year is still not readable. Even so, if you have the time, I would love to get a brief synopsis of the plat and characters since the story came from something with which I was involved. I really did think the story started out great. Would love to know what you did with it.

11:53 AM  
Blogger Kacey said...

What do you do for an encore after 50,000 words in 30 days?

2:04 PM  
Blogger Lucy Stern said...

Big Dave, glad you are back...Congradulations on "winning" the writing contest. My husband found out real quick not to let me read his writings while they were in rogress....Maybe we women/wives are just too opionated...Ha Ha.

Wendy's right, a love story has to have certain elements. A romance novel can get rather mushy...In any case, I'm glad you are back.

8:49 PM  
Blogger Lucy Stern said...

Yeks! I forget the p in progress.

8:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


12:41 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home