Abstract gestural art in yellow, green, and purple
By Elaine Greywalker

However, when human beings grasp the idea of a universal reason superior to the perceptible chain of events, the contingent side of their lives becomes apparent. Wisdom then consists in realizing that behind the profusion of vain, ephemeral incidents lurks a higher, sometimes incomprehensible order. —Thomas G Pavel, The Lives of the Novel; a History, Princeton University Press, Princeton and Oxford, 2003

National Novel Writing Month: A Vacation for My Imagination

I’m a participant.

… because I don’t express myself often enough. My experience is that others would rather hear about themselves and not me. I don’t blame them. I have the same disease.

In November of each year, since 2006, I write a 50,000 word novel draft during National Novel Writing Month. (You can see a summary on the Books page.)

Each year I run through a hailstorm of emotions as I prepare to write the novel. Mostly, I ignore any preparation. One year I tried writing an outline. It was useless after the first few words. So, I just go. I’m a “by the seat of my pants” (pantser) writer. At least for novels.

There is always that quiet voice about a week before I begin saying, “I’m not writing a novel this year.” That doesn’t last. When November 1st arrives, I will be writing with everyone else. Last year it was 640,000 other writers. Probably more this year.

Looking forward to taking this imagination vacation when I’ll get all those words, ideas, characters, plot, sub-plot, destinations, and stuff out of my head.

You can do it, too! Your imagination will thank you. Click on the link above to sign up.

Life vs Novel Revision

Misquoting Carlos Castaneda at the end of 100 Happy Days.
Misquoting Carlos Castaneda at the end of 100 Happy Days.

One of the entries of my 100 Happy Days blog describes novel editing. Chiefly because I have found this book that encourages me to write through the challenges of ignorance, emptiness, and doubt. Other editing books talk about cutting and hashing and improving grammar. All fairly useless to me because I am terse and make vast unconscious assumptions about the reader. I need to add writing to clarify (to myself as well as the reader) what the heck is happening.

Editing was moving along great while I visited my mother. I edited during her regular afternoon nap. Then “life happened” during the weekend I visited my son and his family where there is no napping. After that, I was preparing to return home. Back at home, I spent time settling in while attempting to see the future and make plans for a move.

Today, I will head out to the library and resume editing in a serious environment. I’ve had a lot of time to contemplate my editing process and understand more fully how I rely on daily motivation and encouragement (which I am getting from this book). Even if I don’t follow the day’s advice, I still get going and words get edited. Looking forward to one day finishing up The Unicorn Rescue and moving on to the real novel in my life.