The Plan For November

It’s good to have a plan. As Colonel John ‘Hannibal’ Smith said, “I love it when a plan comes together!”

November’s coming, and that means that things are going to get really, REALLY busy.

First of all, above and beyond and top priority over everything (which could completely derail and invalidate everything below) is the job hunt. Gotta find something. Priorities and all of that.

Between sending out resumes and checking out Linkedin and so on and so forth, for the last six months there’s been this blog to write and post every day. This is not a bad thing! Developing some writing discipline was (and is) one of the primary purposes for this blog’s existence. Participating in things like Chuck Wendig’s weekly “Flash Fiction Challenge” exercise is also a great part of the blog.

As I’m now joining the “Wednesday Writer’s Group”, I want and need to start actively writing again on two different old first drafts. I probably won’t be able to write on both every day, but it would be nice to set a goal of 1,000 words a day or more on one or the other. At least enough to keep ahead of the group and have something to hand out for critiquing every week.

Next, some of you may know that November is “National Novel Writing Month“, or “NaNoWriMo”. For the third year, I’m planning on trying to participate. That’s an average of 1,700 words a day every day in November in order to hit the goal.

It’s true of many of us human critters that we dislike pressure and working on tight deadlines. It’s also true that many of us perform much better when working in a high pressure situation while working on tight deadlines. (That’s why bosses, teachers, and editors use them – duh!) I recognize that I’m someone who both dislikes and needs the pressure. I’ve learned over the years that I can subvert any procrastination inclinations by proactively setting myself up in advance to perform in a public spotlight. I’ll hate it later and wonder why in hell I did that – but I know why, both now and then. (Kind of like the halfway point in a marathon. Every time I wonder what in the hell I’m doing and I swear up and down that I’m never going to run again and I’m going to throw in the towel at any second – but I don’t quit and I always do run again.)

So for my NaNoWriMo project this year, I’m going to post the daily “zeroth draft” manuscript here. Every day. Or else I’ll have to post (i.e. “confess”) here that I didn’t write that day. Every day.

Understand that this will not be polished, smooth, edited, publishable-ready prose of the highest standards. This is the “puke words onto the paper and keep writing” stuff, the draft before the first draft, the mother of all “Flash Fiction Challenges” where instead of “1,000 words or so” it’s “50,000 words or so”. Hell, I may even ask for plot suggestions and directions from the followers of this blog and go with those ideas. It will be an “adventure”.

It also means that many days in November will have two posts per day here. Over the last 177 days I have posted 182 articles here, one per day with five days that had two articles. I expect to be posting one entry a day for the “usual” We Love The Stars Too Fondly stuff (simple astrophotography, Odds & Sods, critter pictures, Random Blatherationings, book reviews, semi-sane rants, and so on) and then a second post with that day’s NaNoWriMo output. The writing on the project(s) for the Wednesday group will not be posted here – that will be a surprise in a year or so when it gets published.

If you start seeing a little daily “scoreboard” as part of every day’s post, you’ll know what it’s about.

Oh, and then on Thanksgiving weekend the annual Christmas lights madness starts. We haven’t talked about that yet… Heh, heh… Heh, heh… *rubs hand together and drools a little*

That’s the plan! (You’ve been warned.)

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