20 August 2009

cue the training montage music, please

I realize the last entry was pretty bad. You may have noticed something of a slower pace to the entries published here, if you still drop by at all. It's true, I'm writing less, and apparently when I do, in fact, write something, it's a bloody mess.

Yesterday's rambling, well, whatever it was (read it here, if you haven't already) was written over the course of something like four months, and I no longer have a real idea of when I first considered tackling the topic of movies ripping off other movies. It was the top draft on a pile that is getting smaller, due more to me deleting the ones I either can't remember* or no longer feel as strongly compelled to write. There may still be others, dredged out of the past (I do have this charming story, partially written, about losing my mobile phone in New York City from December 2005) but the pickings are getting leaner.

The entries directly preceding yesterday's also aren't samples of my best writing. I'm beginning to suspect that in order to really produce something of quality, consistently, I'd need to produce a much greater quantity.

Well, when I think about it like that, it just makes sense.

I'm out of practice. November marks the annual National Novel Writing Month and, as usual, I have that deep-seated desire to give it another go, to finally 'win' it by writing a 50,000 word book in 30 days.

I don't even recall if I wrote more than a paragraph last year, and barely more than that the year before. Back in 2004 or 2005 I actually made it to the thousands, not by much, but I think I ended up starting a second story entirely to do so. As much as reading my 50,000+ words from 2003 amuses me, I cannot in good conscience call it a novel, or even a book, in any conventional sense, though I do still hope, someday, to settle on a title and cover for it, and send it to a print-on-demand shop, just so I can own something that at least looks like a book I've authored. So the great American NaNoWriMo novel still eludes me.

And see, I've rambled again. Given my recent output here, I can't even delude myself into thinking I'd be capable of starting a novel, let alone finishing one worth reading. What I need to do is get back in shape, as it were. If there were a writer's equivalent of the retired boxer, atrophied and tired, needing more than just the determination and a rediscovered hunger for victory for one last bout against a seemingly unbeatable challenger, well, maybe somebody could finish out this extended metaphor in some satisfactory way.

It's too early for me to give up on this year's novel. It'll take some effort to get myself to the mindset to try to tackle writing it, but if I try a little harder around here, I may just have a fighting chance.

Of course, I need to think up a story first.

* I still have many an unpublished entry where I recorded merely the date and the system ID of the post that would've been published that day (and likely written several days or weeks later), though I've deleted over a hundred such drafts over the last year or so. Someday I'd like to have the number of drafts back at zero. That's probably a more realistic goal than writing a novel, and an attainable one at that, since all I'd need do is select them all and delete them, in a fit of defeatism at not finishing them properly.

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