Yes, it’s that time of year again when my feet are freezing and my email inbox shudders with messages gently reminding me it’s National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo.
The challenge is to write a novel in a month and I played along a few years back but failed miserably for two reasons; first, I couldn’t meet the daily word count without repeating the same sentence over and over again (Bart Simpson’s blackboard style), and second, I couldn’t bring myself to finish the story until May. I believe most people do take the challenge and make it work for them, but it just didn’t seem to suit me, or I didn’t suit it. That’s neither here nor there. The point is I signed up for the challenge, totally broke the rules, and still ended up with a first draft several months later. So, I am all for NaNoWriMo. I’m just not very good at it.
Instead, I decided to set a different challenge for myself this year and well, you’re reading it right now.. ta-dah! A few writers I know told me I had to set up a blog so I pretended I would and then I didn’t. It all sounded tech-heavy and scary as hell so I just thought about other things for a few years. Then, one day not too long ago I googled it and changed my mind, and now I have a blog (the stories I write are a bit more exciting that this one, but I just wanted to give you the background).
The other reason for my reluctance was that I didn’t really know what a writer’s blog should look like or say. I am not a How-To guru so I felt I probably wouldn’t have much to contribute. I looked at a few well-established writers’ blogs, like Hanif Kureishi and Marian Keyes, and they were full of tips and tricks that come from years of writing experience, phenomenal publishing success and all round excellence in their field. I won’t lie, I had major blog-envy, It was my own fault for aiming my search too high. so I ran away from the computer for a few days, and thought about it some more.
I have had stories published and I have also self-published (a novella). I have been writing for as long as I can remember and I am learning all the time. There are millions of writers out there just like me who have some experience but need support because writing is a lonely little task. That’s just the nature of the beast. A blog could be such a positive influence, a little fiber optic fist-bump when you feel like your writing is nothing but a joke, which we all do from time to time.
I will share my stories and stories about my stories, I will get gushy about my favourite styles and authors, I will rant about my frustrations (ooh lucky you!) and I will also invite guest writers to get involved. I already know so many excellent writers I would love to talk to and hope to know many more.
So, there it is. This is my blog and I hope it proves useful.