I was dared to take part in this year's NaNoWriMo event, whereby you write a whole novel in one month.
Whether it's a good novel or a piece of absolute tosh doesn't matter. The objective is to commit, and finish it, in one month. I've totally rejected the idea before, but something just got me, with this dare, to sort of go "NER NER NER NER" and prove that I can.
There are a few issues though. Apparently what most people enjoy about it is the interaction with other writers. I don't have the time for that. I have no idea how I'm going to fit in writing a novel, let alone any sort of discussion about it. But at least with just writing I can schedule, get up early, skip the blog, and knuckle down. Discussions are notorious time-wasters, and they will not be happening.
Apart from that, I have no desire or need to discuss it. It'll either happen, or it won't, it'll either work, or it won't. Apparently I am missing something, because I simply don't "get" the point of this discussion aspect.
The other thing is, I write in straight lines. I start at the beginning, move along bit by bit, then get to the end. Admittedly I've never reached the end of anything (hence the challenge) but that's how I write. In some ways this is well suited to a writing challenge where you start and stop on a given date, but from what I've been told you are actually supposed to be writing a draft, not a really finished, finished novel.
I don't write drafts. I don't know how to. I've never been able to. I have an idea for a story, I know more or less what I want to do with it, you know, the version you'd see on the back of the cover, and then I just....write. It comes as it comes.
Anyway, it's the middle of October and I have got as far as that. I had no intention of sharing the idea with anyone up front, but I got talked into it.
What it is basically is a historical fiction feminist story. Set against the bitter end of the Minoan civilization, it's a story of a girl growing up with a mind of her own. She resists her culture because she objects to its patriarchy. We know next to nothing about the Minoan patriarchy so I have pretty much free reign, but I think those bulls give us some clues. Anyway, I foolishly shared a few ideas I had and was told it wasn't feminist enough.
Apparently it's not got enough inner conflict or angst.
This criticism has been especially helpful, so clearly there is SOME value in discussion. Because let me tell you about inner conflict and angst. We don't need your steenkin' inner conflict and angst. The whole point here is that she is a strong-minded girl, a forge-ahead girl, a do-it-on-your-own-terms girl. A decisive girl.
That's the whole fucking point.
And why? Because anyone will tell you "WRITE WHAT YOU KNOW". I'm using myself as her character, duh. I don't do inner conflict and angst. More to the more I don't wish to read about inner conflict and angst and I'm sure I'm not alone in that.
If there is a reason we need feminism, it's because of this ridiculous stereotype that women are all muddle-headed and fluffy. Well, no, they aren't. Actually.
The next bit is the silliest. I was going to write each day in a blog, so that you lot could watch the story develop. Apparently I should not do that. I'm supposed to wait until the end of November and then submit the story to NaNoWriMo. So anyone could do that, and cheat, and say it took a month when they'd been working on it for 3 years. I suppose they could do that on a blog anyway.
But the idea is, you hope someone will publish it. Apparently many of these books get published. I'm not sure I like that idea, that my weakest, most rushed piece of work could be what introduces the world to me.
I am still not "getting" this. I'll write a novel, I'll send it in, challenge accepted, but it makes no sense whatsoever.