So, this is where I attempt to talk anyone listening into doing the NaNoWriMo with me. For those of you who don't know what it is goto nanowrimo.org. This will be my third year in NaNoWriMo. In my first year, I succeeded in passing the 50000 word goal. I created a novel entitled Seven Snakes (which is in some serious need for a rewrite/edit). In year two, I got about half through a second Novel entitled Puppets, Peyote and Porn. I intend to revisit and reattempt to complete this novel. basically I had gotten to a place where I just couldn't figure out where the characters were going to end up and so starting putting them in terribly offensive lurid situations until I got distracted by other literary pursuits. Some of the problems I couldn't write around last time have sort of been solved in my head. It is just the joint distraction of CLAY CONTINENT online as well as storyboarding MEATLOCKER that has kept me from getting back to this terribly offensive story I've been trying to tell about 2 brothers, One a puppeteer, the other a pornographer... and the disgusting ways in which they are forced to collaborate.
So, this year I'm trying to figure out what to write. I have been flirting with the idea of a story about a Cuba.
Why do I love NaNoWriMo? Well, I found it in a time in my life when I really needed something like it to help me make it through the day. It was one of the few things that really kept me going while I was stuck in Georgia dreaming of Chicago. That period was a very dark dark time for me. My employer at the time was constantly requesting that its employees hold off on cashing checks, there was a total breakdown in moral and trust at that office. It seemed like every week someone either threatened to quit or just walked away. Bonuses that had been discussed never arrived, and I was consumed with the notion that I was isolated from everyone and everything that meant something to me. Travel was a big part of that job, and I never knew if the company card was going to be declined while I was on the road (which despite the boss's assurance happened twice during my employment there.) The stress and depression hit my body like a mack truck, I felt crippled with pain and anxiety. I wore braces on both knees and ankles in order to help me walk and my back was in so much pain, I visiting a chiropractor 3 times a week and icing my back daily and in my sleep. I had made the decision to leave Atlanta and return to Chicago, but I still had two weeks till I was going to give my notice, and with the financial difficulties the company was having being obviously shrugged onto the employees, it was essential to my escape back to Chicago plan, that I get paid till the end of the month.
I needed something desperately to take my mind off the anxiety, too help me get through each long painfully and fearful day that month of November before I made a desperate run back north in December. Enter NaNoWriMo. I had been trying desperately to start writing again, anything. I had been able to finish a play that was over 2 years in partial drafts (The Meatlocker), but was unable to figure out what or how to begin another project. I bought a book with a silly sounding title "No Plot, No Problem" and was inspired by both the liberty in approach that the book put forth, the way in which it spoke to motivation and deadline, and I also enjoyed the idea of this wide network, this community of people all over the country, indeed all over the globe sitting down at their computers and notepads for the month of November, all trying to do this desperate, wonderful thing...writing a novel.
So, anyone out there who feels the clamp of writer's block seize upon them, or just can;t find the discipline or focus to write that story, that they know they have hibernating inside them, I strongly suggest you read "No Plot, No Problem", and I invite you to consider doing the NaNoWriMo this year. It was a major turning point in my creative life, and I am so excited to start it up again.