That can’t even be considered a number really. It’s sort of like a un-number. It’s like how white isn’t a colour because it’s the absence of colour. There you go, zero is a shade.
It’s also what my word count is still sitting at.
Not that I was expecting to have some brilliant blue or verdant green all over my page. Shit brown more like. I would have even settled for a little bit of grey (sure it’s a shade too, but it feels a little more substantial at least).
Long story short (writer’s competition joke), work’s been crazy busy. As if getting ready to moving offices, stocking all our retailers with holiday level stock on our subway buttons, and getting a promotion to Associate Editor wasn’t enough, we’re getting in to crunch time on our new Winter-themed issue. At least my creative flair — or general Bulkoness, I’m not sure — has been seeping in to my article on the hidden grossness of winter in the city. I’m pretty much painting it as the season most akin to repeat-offending ambush rapists.
Though I’ve yet to put pen to paper, my mind has at least been going over the details of what would have been my NaNoWriMo piece. I’ve been thinking of how to avoid certain pitfalls common the genre and just fine tuning specific that I was previously unsure about. So although it’s been a No-word-vember for me, at least I have an extra month’s worth of forethought for my story.
And if you really need to see what Bulko has to say, wait for the new issue of Spacing. I say “Ninja Turtle farts” in it.
Hello Friends and Gentle Readers,
I seem to have fallen behind on the Nanowrimo track; I’m at 19000 words and should be at 26000 or so. But that’s ok. I turned off my creativity for a few days to concentrate on being lazy for the weekend. I also started reading Dance Dance Dance by Haruki Murakami and finally watched David Lynch’s Wild at Heart. The latter has inspired me to delve into some serious melodrama. I’m talking about pulpy forbidden love, with lingering gazes and amazing one-liners. I’m already bringing out the red lipstick and blue eyeshadow. Too bad none of my characters have Southern accents…
But before I get to that, I’ll share this fragment with you (it’s not very good, don’t judge me). In this chapter, Sabine is meeting the mysterious “Emma” at an awful bar in the east-end. Yes, my hatred for the east-end is palpable. I find that area absolutely horrifying and refuse to walk around there after nightfall. Sabine apparently met Emma during the night that she can’t remember, but the circumstances are…mysterious. Hope you don’t mind it! Continue reading “Falling Behind…”
I wanted to post a quick update from the half-way point to confess I have been otherwise occupied for the last several days. My word count has stalled at a little over 17,000 words. Hopefully I can get things moving again over the next couple of days: Even two or three great days will have me back on track.
A few of things I’m pretty confident of after two weeks of plugging away at this thing:
1) I’m not funny, or satirical, or humourous. Where I can provoke a smirk out of a reader, it’s when the obvious ‘straight man’ unexpectedly cracks wise. My original intention was to use the conversations between a narrator who has lived for millennia and a physical incarnation of Death as a light-hearted framing device between episodes of historical fiction. I’ve been trying that for days now, and I cannot convincingly make that work. Not in 30 days, anyway.
2) As such, my admittedly provisional title is probably not long for this world. If I can’t create a spark between the narrator and the backpacker, Death is just going to have to be demoted from title-worthy down to conclusion-driving device. We’ll see if I can still work in a bit of character development: I haven’t lost all hope here. I’m just admitting things have not evolved as I would have wished.
3) When I get going, I can shoot out 2,000 words as easily as I can whistle a happy tune. When I’m trying to get going, though, it’s like pushing a gold fish across a soccer field with your nose: It’s not an impossibility, but getting it done is a laborious task, and it would probably be a sight to see if a would-be spectator should wander by.
Anyway, I need to go change my laundry load. That and writing are all I have left to do today. Happy writing for some and reading for all. Cheers!
After re-reading my first chapter, I am somewhat ashamed of myself. It’s not very good. But it gets better. I want things to be funnier, but I’m not very good at making up comedy without a straight man to set me up.
Anyway, today I found myself leaping around with my axe down crazy ice covered side hill landscape. I descended into marshy black spruce with light fluffy old man’s beard. I plucked a bunch of it and lit the rager to end all ragers. I could see my smoke signals rising from 30km away even after we picked up all four other guys. While I was flying, I realized that I don’t play my guitar that much anymore. And I thought, I’ve got to stop swinging this axe and start swinging my axe. I thought that was pretty funny. Anyway, comedy show tonight and then an early bed time. I will scribble a little more into my text edit document and then hit the hay. Hope everyone else is having as much fun as I am. Or at least isn’t going insane.
I had this idea when I started NaNoWriMo this year. I was going to kill a ton of characters. Each chapter would be about one person. At the end of the chapter, that person would die. The next chapter would be about the person who killed them. It was going to be lots of fun, murdering all these poor innocent characters. And every chapter would be a new person with a new life story to share, at length, if I got stuck for words.
It just didn’t work out that way. I started off with a squirrel, and he died like he was supposed to. A hungry cat got him. Then the cat got hit by a girl on a bike, as planned. But the girl decided she didn’t want to die. Continue reading “NaNoWriMo and uncooperative plot lines”
My name is Tyler Brown and I am looking forward to adding my own brand of science fiction to Stranger Than Truth. I have a couple stories I am currently editing with Marcus Carab to put up on the site shortly.
I will also be joining the NaNoWriMo writing spree this month with a story about a time traveler and the amazing business wear he possesses in The Man In the Ten Billion Dollar Suit.
I hope you enjoy it.
Awaiting the first pages of my novel The Kleptocracy to present themselves, I have faith in these two poems:
She is as a scroll of fervent Thuluth.
Not adorned but is ornamentation
Of Life; flitting through perilous existence.
A Minaret scene through and above the spandrels,
Gilt and wondrous!
Continue reading “Razzamatazz musters bold candour.”
Things have taken a strange turn for me here in Dawson City. I had to move outta my trailer and into the BO GO MO (Bonanza Gold Motel). It’s been a good first night. The temperature was consistent, the bed was soft, and there was room for my clothes to not be on me while I slept. I spent last night writing, and then went to breakfast at 7 am. Our days are getting shorter and shorter, which means I have more time to write. However, the internet connection here is phenomenally crappy. My original story idea was completely tossed aside and I began a new story loosely based on my life when I was in Toronto. You might notice yourself appearing in my story. I do not apologize. Anyway, I plan for my character to take a dramatic turn into crime or at least arson. I’ll be holed up in my room for the next 15 days with nothing but pizza, beer, granola bars and my new mac book pro running text edit and dictionary. I’m behind on my words per day at the moment, but I have ideas coming. Hopefully this story isn’t the worst ever, but I won’t be heart broken if it is. More later from our main character: Sean Steven. And maybe even a chapter for the leading lady: Sophie Smith. Or maybe even a chapter from our buddy across the bridge: Dillinger. Hope to read some more of everyone else’s endeavors as well.
I’m up to 6050 words, which isn’t a bad sum for two days of writing. That said, a lot of them need to be in a different order before I’d call them good.
I ran out of steam before I finished my chapter, but I like the direction it’s heading. Anyone ever read about a coup d’etat following a mammoth hunt?
You will soon…
Yesterday was my second worst NaNoWriMo opening day EVER. 802 mostly uninteresting words. Not a good way to start off. Luckily, it’s a long month.
And today, I read my first “NaNoWriMo is bad” blog post of the season. This one wasn’t an unreasonable criticism, though I have to admit that I got bored and didn’t actually finish reading. If you click the link, I apologize for linking to Salon.com. Their advertising is generally on the high end of obnoxious.
The general criticism of NaNoWriMo is that it plays up the fun part of writing, and glosses over the fact that you need do a lot of editing to end up with something that people really want to read. The vast majority of Nanoers will agree with this—you don’t go from November 30th to publication without a lot of work in between.
I know the NaNoWriMo website doesn’t like to bring this up. Who would take part if they kept reminding you that, even in the best case scenario, you’re looking at six to 12 more months of hard work before you get something that anyone might want to publish? So, instead, they promote the fun parts. The camaraderie, the excitement at finishing, the feeling of holding the printed manuscript in your hands for the first time…
But is publication really what NaNo is about? I’d argue that it isn’t, and never has been, and it’s nevertheless very worthwhile. Continue reading “NaNoWriMo criticism misses the point”