National Novel Writing Month? Really?
Normally, I'm one of those skeptical of the idea that a jillion people checking in online and pushing out 50,000 words had anything to do with producing quality work. Still, I've thought of doing it, worried about it, then as I put aside the idea that fiction is what I do, mostly cheered on a friend or two from way on the sidelines.
I've also been shy about full-on blogging here; I don't yet have a book, though I've been writing all my life, with three and a half (!) novels in the drawer before I stubbornly and happily discovered journalism. I do most of my blogging at my paid job (http://www.womensvoicesforchange.org/) and at a small shop on my own site; I joined RR mostly so I can properly appreciate others' blogs here. But if I'm going to cross that barrier -- the published book - I need to fulfill my contract with University of California Press, and deliver a 110,000 word nonfiction narrative by January 1.
So when I got the note from RR about participating in NaNoWriMo, I had one question: "Does it have to be fiction?" My book has plots, characters, more themes than you can shake a stick at and is as vivid as I can make it considering I can't make shit up. I'm hoping that adding the structure and mass mutual cheerleading of NaNoWriMo to my daily practice will add to my determination to produce against all odds - with little else that matters. I have six chapters, a prologue and an epilogue nowhere near drafted - and that doesn't count fact-checking and revision. It's still impossible. I'm still determined to do it. Thanks to Red Room for inviting me to do it this way.