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The Play’s the Thing March 3, 2010

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Having barely got back the use of my fingers after the frenzied writing and typing of NaNoWriMo, it is time to start thinking about the frenzy that is Script Frenzy

Yes, the crazy folks who brought you National Novel Writing Month and inspired 100 000 people to write a novel, in a month, are back. This time they are challenging people to write 100 pages of a play, film script, tv show or graphic novel. In a month. This time the magic month is April.

I am tempted. I have always wanted to write a play. And seeing as I watch so many movies why not try to write one. Or adapt one of my favourite books for the stage or screen. It could be fun.

It could be crazy. I am super busy at work, I have a poetry journal to edit and a writing class to teach. And I am meant to be putting together my next poetry book. Oh yes, and finishing last year’s nanowrimo novel. I don’t have time for this.

Which means I will probably end up doing it. Or at least signing up and seeing how far I go. I even have an idea. Gulp. Something I thought of last October but which seemed better suited to be a play than a novel.  Even if I never finish the play, I am sure to learn a lot about writing. And might end up with a short story if not a play. Plus – it could be fun.

To script or not to script? That is the question…

Poem a Day January 26, 2010

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I was given a beautiful leather-bound diary for Christmas. The problem is that I already had a diary for 2010, one of a more manageable size to keep in my bag.

While wondering what to do with the page a day diary I hit on a idea. It is possibly crazy, but could be fun. I would challenge myself to write a poem a day. Every day. For the whole year. Yikes!

Of course I realise that I will not actually achieve this goal. And a lot of what I write is going to be rubbish. But, if I at least manage to write a poem on some days there is a good chance that at least some of the poems will be worth working on. And I will have an interesting poetic account of my year (I will try to let the poem be inspired by something that happened that day).

Every now and then I will post a poem here and report on progress.

Does anyone else have crazy writing goals or challenges?

Nano News November 23, 2009

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As you might have noticed, there have not been any entries here this month.  So much for my grand plans to post daily updates of my nanowrimo progress.

Yesterday I reached 30 000 words. I am still behind, but if I can manage to write 3000 words every day I should finish in time. This would be good.

But even if I don’t reach the magical 50 000 words target, I will have a fat manuscript to work on. I have been carrying this story around in my head for many months, some parts of it for several years. Despite all my good intentions to write it down, something always gets in the way.

Which is where nanowrimo becomes so powerful. I have a month to be a novelist, to focus on my writing, to write furiously – and really fast. To get rid of my inner editor and stop worrying about wether what I am writing is good enough. If I wrote something, that is good.

And surprisingly good stuff appears, in amongst some very strange sections and several pages of writing so bad it would make me weep, were it not for being nanowrimo when quantity is so much more important than quality. If I had the luxury of long periods to think, to ponder the plot, I would become frustrated and irritated with plot and characters. But in the pressure cooker environment I can’t stop, or leave it until I feel like writing, or feel particularly inspired. Instead I just have to sit down and write. Which is when the writing starts to take over and things get really interesting.

Who knows what will happen in the next 20 000 words. I certainly don’t. But I am looking forward to finding out.

A novel way to spend November October 26, 2009

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November is almost here. Which is cause for excitement for many people. Not because it is one month closer to Christmas. No, it is because November is the month for NaNoWriMo.

Nanowhat? you might be asking.

The answer is NaNoWriMo – National Novel Writing Month. This is an international writing challenge where participants will aim to write a 50 000 word novel in 30 days.

This might sound crazy, but is quite doable. And a lot of fun. And a little crazy. But in a good way.

If you have always wanted to write a novel, but never got round to it, or have been too afraid or busy to start, then this is the ideal opportunity. Nothing like a deadline to get things moving.

This will be my fifth year of writing. I will update my progress here, but will be spending most of my time writing frantically or hanging out at the fun forums at www.nanowrimo.org. Why don’t you join me?