Writing Life: The November Novel

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© by Raymond Alexander Kukkee

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I can’t believe it.  It’s almost November again.   The once-spectacular colors of autumn are fading fast,  turning ghostly dull and lifeless in our chilly  rain.  They always do.  We creative types  don’t like it much when the Blah’s and Writerblocks come knocking either.  At this time of year Northwestern Ontario (which is officially one of the sunniest places in Canada, how can that be?)  is typically  blanketed  by lifeless, pewter-gray clouds. From our vantage point,  they are motionless,  uninteresting,  low, loaded with water,  and magically   propped up only by raindrops.  In other news, gGarden’s in, fall cleanup pretty much done, so what to do?

It’s always a good question, isn’t it?

What will  you be doing this November?  Blogging?  Niche articles?  More of those brilliant, but never-pay-a- penny  articles for content mills promising great things?  

How about a  November novel?  Wait….. Isn’t that almost a tradition? Did you participate in NaNoWriMo last year?

This is 2013, The Year of the Writer,  so never mind procrastinating and  daydreaming, bending paper clips and teasing the cat, dear scribbler. Sharpen those pencils collecting dust in those wonky dust-covered ceramic mugs on your desk instead if you haven’t got a quill pen.  Get paper. Get excited.  Jump up and down. Shout.  Hum. Meditate.   Create  some new, unique  characters that will  drive the world to distraction  instead of waiting for life to happen. Drink some coffee.   Listen to the muse. She’ll agree that  November’s a great time to write.

 NaNoWriMo

Seriously.  How about tackling a complete novel?  A minimum of 50,000 words in 30 days. Will you be brave enough to join the annual  NaNoWriMo challenge this November?  For writers everywhere, writing 50,000 words or more  to a deadline is a substantial  challenge. I wrote one successfully  last year,  just under 70,000 words,  but then I was  spurred on and competing with that incredibly prolific writer and good friend  Amanda Dcosta, CEO and creator of Mandy’s Pages.  The tortoise and the hare. A fine race it was too.  Raised some dust.  Guess who was the tortoise.  I write slowly, methodically, and…..well, good thing there’s no obligation to say who finished the race first.  Neither of us has published those novels either…….yet, that is.    

How about you, do you dread your November effort will just be another  boring ” 50,000 dark and stormy nights” effort?    Hm… Persist. Be encouraged;  maybe it will turn out to be the Great American Novel after all.  We can dream, and we are eternally advised that practice makes perfect.

The need for practice  is a great reason to try.  Let’s face it, writing is a craft; a skill.  Conscientious effort produces results, however imperfect;  but writing with the intention of practice is usually  improved.   Perhaps this November it will  be honed to perfection. Do you have a unique novel  in the dark files of your mind?  Dig it out; go for it, dial up the muse!

November offers other interesting options “What? Anything, tell us, tell us!” you shout with glee.  “What on earth could be as exhilarating as writing 50,000 words in 30 days? ”

Have you Heard of  GrammoWriMo ?   Recently I was  informed  by  Allison VanNest, Grammarly’s Head of Communications —about the folks at Grammarly tossing their hat into the ring for the first time this November with a novel idea —a community novel.

It’‘s an interesting idea;  you can write 800 words and participate in a community novel  that will be cooperatively written by hundreds of authors  including  Gayle Brandeis, who also happens to be a published NaNoWriMo author.   The scoop is that  Gayle will write the first and last lines of this potentially amazing book . To join Gayle and be involved, all you have to do is sign up!   Check out this interesting idea, and by the way, —you can even help decide the plot!  For more information, go to  http://www.grammarly.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/GrammoWriMo-Logo.png

Thanks to Allie at Grammarly for that timely information!

Happy November!

Regardless,  whether you decide to tackle a  NaNoWriMo  novel, GrammoWriMo,  short stories or  other options, —choose well, and plan for an exciting November. Pssst….tell me what you’re doing, and don’t forget to  keep on writing!

 

Is that Incoming I hear?

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About Raymond Alexander Kukkee

A published author and freelance writing professional, Raymond lives and writes in Northwestern Ontario.
This entry was posted in Business, Crafts and skills, Life, Publishing, Writing Life and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Writing Life: The November Novel

  1. Mandy says:

    I don’t exactly support the NaNoWriMo as in ‘writing to win – from the thousands of writers competing to write a novel by month’s end’, but I do support the writing spirit and the reasons to motivate myself to write. The hare and the tortoise race was fun last year, wasn’t it, Raymond? I had fun and I know you did too. You beat me to it although we both hit target 50K words. (And not surprisingly, our stories went past that count too.)

    For me, it’s a matter of editing now and streamlining my story line, but I know that once I focus on that part, my book will be ready since I already drafted the story last November. I’d encourage writers to write their books in November, not because of the NaNoWriMo challenges, but because you have it in you to write and find the strength and motivation to write for yourself based on the encouragement from around. It is a big deal for those who are writing their first novel. You don’t have to write perfectly, but you need to start somewhere; so why not this November? What do you have to lose? You’d end up with a book of your own. Ain’t that neat?

  2. hi Mandy, I’m not so sure I got there first, I’m pretty sure you beat me to it….haha,,,and yes, it was actually your challenge that inspired. Our competition was exciting last year, a few laughs, no doubt– and it worked to inspire. I would never have written that much without that encouragement.
    I would encourage all aspiring writers to give it a try, NanoWriMo, GrammoWriMo or private competition.
    As an update I am still editing, doing some editing/rewriting that novel-and adding to it. That doesn’t preclude starting a new one in November; I tend to work best with several on the burner! Thanks for being such an inspiration –and a great friend, Mandy! “:) ~R

  3. Happy almost November! I’ve thought about the Nano project but I’m deciding to just stick to my own timelines. That’s great that you and Mandy took the challenge last year – you’ll get the book done yet 🙂 Are you participating this year, Ray? Thanks for the info, as I didn’t realize there is a new community project available. Interesting. I suppose every year there is an update/turn/change. Ah, life, change keeps us on our toes!

    • Hi Christyb, happy ‘almost-November’ to you too! In all likelihood I probably will not be participating in Nano; my existing books and other projects are keeping me overloaded–at least at this point. Who knows, though,the muse may change my mind. The competition with Mandy was a blast –and a lot of work too. Yes, life itself keeps us on our toes “:) Nice to see you here, Christyb!

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