Is This a Crazy Idea?


11 comments posted
I'm looking at it as a way

I'm looking at it as a way of blasting through writer's block and demystifying the whole process of writing. Just put one word after another, fifty thousand times. First draft. Then I'll either edit it, or move on to my real book.

What genre are you thinking of?

Posted by zoom (not verified) on Wed, 10/07/2009 - 17:43
i think that's RAD!

i think that's RAD! personally, i'm wary of how much i'll be challenged by november's national blog posting month and wouldn't even dream of trying nanowrimo... but i have the utmost admiration for all of you who are even CONSIDERING it!

Posted by feral geographer (not verified) on Thu, 10/08/2009 - 00:18
Hey Megan I think it’s an

Hey Megan

I think it’s an awesome idea! I participated in the Anvil Press three day novel writing contest in 1999 and thought the whole experience was both unsettling and splendid. No, I didn’t win. No, I didn’t even come close. Wasn’t published as a result of it, no one made a movie about it, I didn’t earn a dime. I didn’t get anything out of it that society usually equates with success.

But I got something far more valuable out of the whole thing: Me.

I also emerged from the contest with something else. Sure it looked like a lopsided piece of clay that had been thrown off of the spinning wheel and then blown up in a kiln. It was a complete and utter disaster and when I popped it in the mailbox I crossed my fingers and hoped I didn’t win. Why? Because I realized that, Frankenstein though it was, I had something special. It was mine and I made it. So what if it was basically a first rough draft of a zany idea. It was mine.

The contest was, as Zoom’s comment said, “…a way of blasting through writer’s block and demystifying the whole process of writing.” So much so that 9 months later I produced my first show at the Fringe Festival, 6 months after that I self-published my first collection of stuff, launching it at a pool hall with musicians. And some of that ended up on CBC national radio. Which was nice because it paid my rent for two months, but more importantly I could look my mom in the eye when I said, “I’m a writer.”

I do recall that I had to do a bunch of prep for the contest, physical, mental and otherwise. I knew that I would have to give things up in the short term. I knew I probably wouldn’t win and there was a big chance I wouldn’t even finish. But, like you, I thought, “What if I can?”

More important than that, I thought something like, “I won’t know the answer to that question if I don’t try, and I’ll spend the rest of my life wondering.”

Sorry for going on with what is really a short answer to your already answered question: Yes, it is a crazy idea. But so what. Sometimes you’ve gotta run off and join the circus, despite what you or others think. And when I was hanging upside down, legs curled around the trapeze bar, swinging back and forth, I knew I wasn’t a dazzling Cirque du Soleil maestro. But I thought, “So what, is this ever neat.”

So break legs, do your pre prep work, and let me know if you need a cheerleader.



Posted by Brendan McNally (not verified) on Thu, 10/08/2009 - 02:04
This sounds like a really

This sounds like a really fun challenge. I think that you should give it a shot. What do you have to lose?

Posted by J. (not verified) on Thu, 10/08/2009 - 06:06
Plumb loco, ma'am. As a

Plumb loco, ma'am. As a coyote with a tenuous grip on reality, I enthusiastically advise you to do it.

Posted by coyote (not verified) on Thu, 10/08/2009 - 07:36
See, Internet Denizens! This

See, Internet Denizens! This is why I ask you! Because I wanted to do it and I wanted someone(s) to be my Yes Person(s).

Zoom: I have no idea yet. But I'd be guessing some kind of typical indie/queer/grrrl lit. I don't want to step too far outside my comfort zone. But exactly. I'd love to just have something.

FG: Hello! Oh! I'm very excited that you commented here. NaBloPoMo is hard, but doable. I've done it a couple of years. It's a good challenge though.

Brendan: Exactly the kind of example I was hoping someone would give me.

J: A slice of self-respect, sadly. But it might be worth it.

Coyote: Ah, my favourite Semi-mythical Yes Beastie!

Posted by megan on Thu, 10/08/2009 - 08:57
I'm thinking of signing up

I'm thinking of signing up too. There's nothing to lose and a whole bunch of possible stuff to gain. It's really just a little more than 1500 words a day; maybe an hour a day -- doesn't even have to be all in one go. I say let's all go for it!

Posted by XUP (not verified) on Thu, 10/08/2009 - 18:19
i think you should try it as

i think you should try it as long as you won't be too hard on yourself if it doesn't turn out as you hope. it might be a relief (not to mention a creative boon) to put the perfectionist away for this and just go with it. it sounds like it could be a really great experiment both in writing and in being gentle with yourself. which if funny cause you'll be pushing yourself harder than ever, but a first draft is just that and it's meant to be edited and re-written and so on, but just getting a draft out of your head and into the world would be amazing.

Posted by shelley (not verified) on Thu, 10/08/2009 - 22:34
If I can do it, you can

If I can do it, you can totally do it. You might even write something that isn't loosely based on* everyone we knew from school in Halifax running a scam out of a temp agency.

*and by "loosely based on," I obviously mean "a faithful transcription of." Why make people up when I know so many already?

Posted by janey_emm (not verified) on Fri, 10/09/2009 - 00:06
Seeing as you probably blog

Seeing as you probably blog about 50 000 words a month, I'd say your m ore than capable of the feat. Go Megan go! Go Megan go! Or, uhh... Write, Megan, write! Write, Megan, write!

That does remind of something Steph told me once. Some famous author said that to become a man you have to have climbed a tree, written a book and had a son. This would make Stephanie a man and me not.
Oh wait, I just remembered, I wrote a picture book in grade five. I'm going to say that counts. Whew! I'd hate to have these silly dangly bits for nothing!

Posted by Dave (not verified) on Fri, 10/09/2009 - 10:54
Do it! well As long as you

Do it!
well As long as you can still come to my 30th Birthday Queen party on the 13th. if not postpone until january.

Posted by mae callen (not verified) on Sat, 10/10/2009 - 11:13