Friday, November 4, 2011

November 4

Moving to Boston has not been easy. Hurricanes, earthquakes, bomb threats, and an October nor'easter that left us without power for four days this week. There were moments--inside my 45 degree house--that I decided I am one disaster away from running for my life.

But then there are people--good and kind and generous Boston people--who come along and disarm my resentment. Who take us into their warm home and let us shower. Who feed us and let us drain their electricity with our many dying devices. And young people who invite my kids trick-or-treating on this strangely rescheduled holiday. So maybe I'm more like four or five disasters away from retreat.

But let's not push it.

I have snuck back into my blog, tail between my legs for being so negligent, to announce my personal November writing challenge. It's not NaNoWriMo (writing a 50,000 word novel in a month) but it is inspired by it. Not last year, but for the two years before that, I used that inspiration to kick-start my own stalled projects and it worked well. This year, although my 13-year-old daughter is signed up for the official NaNoWriMo, I have decided that what I really need is outside accountability for working on the second book in my already-sold trilogy.

I sold that trilogy in June, if you recall. I have a deadline for final revisions on the first (completed) book but since I have not yet received my editorial letter, I am supposed to be using this time to write the first draft of book two. As of November 1st, I had written approximately 1500 words. In five months. To be fair, I did move across country. I lived with my family in an apartment for a month. I moved into a new house. I got three kids started in school in Boston. I flew with my oldest to Seattle and helped him settle in at the UW for his freshman year of college. And, that's right, hurricanes and earthquakes and all the aforementioned disasters.

But no more! If I don't write book two, no one will. Plus, I will have to return a bunch of money which has already been largely spent on new appliances for my new house. So, despite what I hear is the not-uncommon fear that the the first book was a fluke which I will never be able to duplicate--despite the certainty that I am the most ungifted writer who ever lived--despite my nightmares of never being able to finish the second book . . .

I must put one word after another. That's it. One word at a time. I will report daily on that day's writing amount, as well as keep a running tally of where I'm at in the novel. The goal for this challenge is to reach 40,000 words by month's end, which would put me roughly halfway.

And you all are responsible to yell at me if I don't. Deal?

Today's word count: 1922
Total word count: 3495
Tomorrow's scene: Lunar eclipse and Christmas 1554

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