Spooky goblins. Ethereal ghosts. The undead, and not that crazy glittery Twilight stuff, but the real soulless, emotionless dead come back to life to consume all you hold dear.
All Hallows’ Eve.
My knees are knocking, but not from the ooky-spookies. We turned out the porch lights and I almost made a “Go Away” sign to ward off those costumed merry-makers. No, tonight is a different terror. NaNoWriMo has come for my soul.
50,000 words in 30 days? I accept that challenge, sir!
I may beat it. I may succumb. I may let out a world-shaking “meh.” But for the next 30 days I’m going to be doing a lot of math in between breaths.
At 1666 words per day, given 30 days and a 20% rewrite or correction rate, then that means 2000 words per day to achieve 50,000 words which is a 200-page novel with generous margins and the most recent novel I read was 674 pages of cramped type but that was a long novel and the next most recent was 378 pages oh crap oh crap, but that’s ok because I often inflate by 28% percent on each rewrite so after 3 or 4 rewrites, which likely means March, plus or minus 2.4 weeks…
Tomorrow begins National Novel Writing Month. I have, helpfully, already decided that I am unlikely to survive. This gives me nothing to lose. Except the house, my wife, my job, sanity, and all this nicely stockpiled booze…
Enough. I’ll fake it. Those things, except for the booze, are pretty forgiving. My boss tolerates me because he doesn’t understand what I do and his partner thinks I’m the cat’s whiskers and luckily he doesn’t look at my invoices. My wife is awesome, and has let me explore all sorts of crazy shit recently. The house is unlikely to burn down, so long as I remember to call that guy for the furnace thing on Thursday. The booze may not forgive me, but it also may not survive the month depending on how things go. Never care about the booze’s feelings.
So, onward, I say! Bringest thou storms and deadlines, tangled plots and bit characters, collapse of home and demands of employ! I shall bear this burden joyfully, for it is in microcosm my life. It is a critical and irreplaceable bit of the puzzle of life that I am assembling, the plot to a biography I hope to be worth reading. For that is it. We are, in essence, requested by the universe to justify the energy we expend, the molecules we consume, to “write something worth reading, or do something worth writing.”
This month, it’s the writing.