Monthly Archives: November 2009

Happy Birthday Puzzle — Three Years Old!


NaNoWriMo winner!

Free Comedy Show in Cambridge, MA 12/1/09

There will be a free comedy show at the Vogt Studio in Cambridge Ma at 6pm, December 1, 2009, located at 56 Brattle Street in Cambridge, hosted by Bob Gautreau.  I will be performing in the show!  You are all welcome!

More on Summer in November

It occurs to me that I have never mentioned on here what Summer in November is about.  It is about my hitch-hiking trip across the country in the summer of 1979.  I did it with my dog, Hoofy.  We traveled through 20 states and two Canadian provinces.  It was quite something.

On four occasions during the writing of this book, I have wept while writing certain chapters.  I don’t know if that’s a sign that the writing is particularly poignant or that I’ve reached a point of utter exhaustion.  Let us hope that it is the former.

I am going to rest now.

Summer in November is more or less completed

I have more or less completed Summer in November as of today, November 21.  I got to around 87,000 words and suddenly, it seemed done.  The story is finished.  I got to a chapter that seemed like the end and I told myself I was done.  I have put in most of the flashbacks that I want in there.  So basically, I’ve just about got a first draft.

I called my brother to tell him the good news.  I reached my sister-in-law and told her.  It felt good.

If, after adding the additional text I want to add, it comes to 100,000 words, so be it.  If not (it probably won’t) so be it.  Art doesn’t depend on word count.  Quantity is not quality.

Still, I have met the NaNoWriMo requirement of 50,000 words.  And I’m damn proud of that.

I plan to “upload” my book in a couple of days to get my “reward certificate” stating that I am a Nano winner.   It has been quite a ride.

And it’s not over yet.  Over the next week I plan to tweak the manuscript and add bits to it.  I will stop on November 30th and let it rest.

Chris Baty, in his book No Plot? No Problem! states that after NaNoWriMo is over, one tends to feel a big letdown, kind of a post-nano depression.  My therapist says she’s worried that I’ll come down with a serious case of post-nano blues.

I’m bracing myself.  I’ve got laundry piled up that I’ve got to do, and various knitting projects to tackle.  Then, after a couple of weeks, I’m going to sit down with Summer in November and take a serious look at it.

I hope I like what I see. I hope that this project has been worthwhile.  I hope that this project turns out to be as exciting to read as it has been to write.  I know that the learning experience of this month has certainly made it all worthwhile.  And I’ll do it again.  Promise.

Here’s proof! 50,430 and counting

Word count 50,430


I wrote a passage and actually started crying over it.  I am either exhausted or it was a darned touching chapter.

I think this chapter needs to be near the end.  Like at the climax.  This can be done with a simple cut and paste.  Later.  Not now.

I have never had the experience of having my own writing send me into tears.  I must be deluded.

I am actually wondering if my book might be decent after all.

Could it be?  Could it have merit at all?

Chris Baty, in his book No Plot? No Problem! states that one should go back and look at one’s masterpiece after a certain amount of time has passed, say, a couple of weeks (I don’t happen to recall what he said) and just read it, and then decide if it’s worth saving and working on.  He said a couple of his books he ended up scrapping.

Imagine that.

I am hereby forewarned.

I’ve hit 30,000

I’ve now reached 30,000 words in my quest to complete Summer in November. The book will be about 100,000 words long.  That is my estimate as of now.  The NaNoWriMo goal is 50,000 words.  I am well on my way.

I am holding up pretty well.  I got weighed today.  I didn’t let that discourage me too much.  It was uneventful.

I saw a skinny girl at the gym the other day.  Our eyes met.  She knew.  I knew.  And that was all.

I’ve written over 25,000 words for NaNo

It’s Day 7 and I’ve reached the halfway point of the goal to reach 50,000 words.  But I am only 1/4 of the way through my story.  I am pacing myself in the story but letting myself go up in word count as much as I need or desire.   I do spend time “fleshing out” the story, and not just telling the barebones of what happened.  This adds to my word count.  Of course, I will have a huge editing job to do, should I decide that this book isn’t all crap when I’m done with it.

Of course, if I keep up at this pace, I’ll reach 100,000 words at the end of the month.  I hope it doesn’t come to that, because if it does, I’ll be putting an incredible demand on myself.

Chris Baty, in his book, No Plot?  No Problem! which is the official guidebook to writing for NaNo…see, now I’ve forgotten what I was going to say.  I’m so burnt out that I can’t remember anything.

Good night.

PS: if you are doing NaNo, I strongly recommend getting some exercise in.  I went to the gym today and it was an incredible stress-reliever.  Okay, back to sleep.

Day Five – Nano update

I have over 19,000 words today.  I am calling it quits right now for the day, and getting ready for knitting class, which is tonight.

I have had tremendous trouble sleeping, so I put in a call to Dr. P, who recommended a temporary increase in one of my medications.  This I welcome.  I don’t enjoy a sleepless night.

I haven’t worked this hard since I was revising my thesis during my last semester at Goddard.   Of course, I revised for longer than a month.  At Goddard we have about eight weeks to revise.  But I worked the hardest during the first three weeks of revision period.  I am having deja vu.

I am not eating very much, and running out of food at home.  I have lost two pounds.  I get weighed on Monday.  I will make sure that the loss isn’t reflected on Dr. K’s scale.  If it is, I am in serious deep water.

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