To write or not to write…

A take on “to be or not to be” for sure, but a puzzling question just the same.  I am participating in the 2010 National November Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) that starts on 1 November (ends 30 November) and frankly, I’m terrified of the commitment that I have made.  Write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days — fiction, genre of your choice. Great, no problem… uh wait, yes there is a problem.  I don’t write fiction. I read it, but don’t write it.

We’re asked to pick a genre and go from there.  That spot is still blank on my profile.  Do I pick Mystery, Chick Lit, Lit Fiction, Romance (um, don’t think so), etc.  Oh lordy, I am in big trouble!

I started doing research on actually writing fiction, ways to get what’s in your head on paper (or the computer) and lord knows, there are many ways to do this.  I actually found some wonderful resources; putting them to use was another story (no pun intended).

So, this past Sunday, using some of the ideas from the resources I found, I put an outline of 3 major characters together along with what I thought my storyline would be.  I started to create people and a story so to speak.  I was pretty pleased with myself, until I looked it over last night.  Blech…I don’t like it. Boring, typical family sturm und drang,  yuck.  Great, now I’m going to have to start again. Oh hell, now what. I really have serious doubts about all of this, but I am also determined to do this.  It’s a real challenge and I haven’t had a good challenge to sink my teeth into for many years. If this was a technical report, it would be a breeze.

I have a bazillion ideas running through my head with no coherent path to getting it on the computer or even organized to where it would make some sort of sense.  Thank heavens I still have a couple of weeks to prepare before we begin.

With all this in mind, I have a huge favor from those of you who might stumble upon this.  I need help. I need encouragement, a thump upside the head, some cyber hand-holding when necessary, anything to help me get through the month of November and to my goal of 50,001 words (readable or not) with my sanity relatively in place… Anyone willing?


2 thoughts on “To write or not to write…

  1. Hey starrygirl1,

    As an aspiring writer myself, I definitely feel your frustration. Something that’s helped me (and has probably been recommended to you a couple hundred times by now) is to just start writing and see where it goes, what you feel like saying.

    I came up with an idea for a short story and started writing the intro. By the time I had finished the paragraph I wanted it to go in a different direction. It’s now going on 4 parts and will probably end at 5, but the point is it isn’t what I thought it would be. Struggling to pick a direction could be a waste of your precious time if you only have a month. Take your three characters and give them a voice, see what they say.

    Best of luck to you!

    • Hi John,

      You know, what you said makes great sense. I tend to overthink things anyway and of course, when you’re trying to accomplish so much in such a short time, overthinking has no place. I believe I will take your advice and give my characters a voice and see where they take me (rather than the other way around). What’s the worst that can happen, right?

      Thank you for reading my post and for commenting. Good luck with your short stories – your “Set Adrift” stories have my attention.



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