Happy NaNoWriMo

Happy NaNoWriMo everyone. National Novel Writing Month starts November 1. It’s a great idea. Write a 50,000 word novella novel in thirty days.  I’m not going to do it even though it’s a great way to switch off the inner critic (because it’s all about the numbers) and just write. As the NaNoWriMo folks say,

“Make no mistake: You will be writing a lot of crap. And that’s a good
thing. By forcing yourself to write so intensely, you are giving
yourself permission to make mistakes. To forgo the endless tweaking and
editing and just create. To build without tearing down.

It’s similar to Eric Witchey’s advice to practice speed writing.

Ain’t nothing to it but to do it. So, if you’re thinking about doing it, here are some interesting links that I’ve come across:

  1. Paperback Writer. Lynne Viehl  offers Twenty Bits of Advice from a Pro for the New NaNo’er (plus links)
  2. The Plot Whisperer. NaNoWriMo Martha Alderson wonders if you’re a “pantser” or a “plotter.”
  3. Word Strumpet, Charlotte Rains Dixon, MFA, offers Top 5 Ways to Prepare for Nanowrimo

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Eric Witchey-Five Minutes on Fiction

Eric Witchey, Five Minutes on Fiction

In the video (part of Willamette Writers’ Five Minutes on Fiction) he talks about a common problem aspiring writers have and how to overcome the obstacle. He gives some good solid advice and it’s worth your time if you want to improve your writing.

Eric Witchey has published science fiction, fantasy, horror, literary, romance, erotica, outdoor adventure, young-adult, and true crime stories. According to his bio, [w]hen not teaching or writing, he restores antique HO locomotives or tosses bits of feather and pointy wire at laughing trout.”

In the video he mentions a story he sold titled Batbaby and Bigfoot vs. The Blood Trucking Vampire. You can find it here at Fortean Bureau.

I saw Eric at this year’s Willamette Writers’ Conference and he alone made it worth my while (if you’re interested, next year’s conference is August 7-9, 2009).

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Hey Taxi!

Harry’s taking the morning off. So here’s another of my writing yoga. I’ve cleaned up the spelling errors and a bit of the punctuation.

Blindbaby Lemon Butterbean pulled his rusting Checker cab onto the curb. Two tires bounced off and he brought the tub to a halt when his dog Butterball barked, which meant stop. He’d gotten Butterball from the pound in Queens for $30.

Blindbaby Lemon Butterbean had a thing about butter. He loved butter on everything. He used it for lubing his cab. The cab ran on rendered butter.

The 1973 Checker throbbed with anticipation as his fare got into the backseat of the cab. Butterbean hit the fare thingie and the meter started at 5 bucks and counting.

“Where to?” Butter bean asked.

“To the airport.” said his client.

Butterbean pushed the GPS navigation system on. “Which one he said.”

“La Guardia”

“La Guardia, huh?” He said La Guardia louder than huh to set the navigational system.

“Turn around, you are going the wrong way,” cooed the GPS in a sultry woman’s voice.

Butterbean loved the technology that gave him the freedom to do what he loved doing—driving. Butterball told him when to stop and when to go by barking—one bark to stop and another bark to go. Butterball also had inflection and tone in his bark that let Butterbean know how urgent the need was to go or usually stop.

Once Butterball went nuts about another dog and Butterball caused $100,000 damage. Now Butterbean had to work harder to pay off that debt.

Butterball barked once. The immense cab lurched off the curb and bounced. Butterbean turned the wheel hard to the left and kept turning until the wheel would not turn any longer. Horns blared from drivers that dodged to get out of the way.

“Get out of the way a**h*les [editor’s note: can’t have swearing now can we?]! Can’t you see I’m blind? Look at the license plates for chrissakes,” Butterbean yelled out the window.

Other drivers yelled back. Butterbean rolled up the window with the squeaky crank.

“You’re blind?” shrieked the woman in the back. “Let me out of this thing.”

“Hey don’t I know you? Your voice is familiar.”

Blindbaby Lemon Butterbean heard pounding from the rear dusty part of his cab.

“I used to be somebody before I got into this deathtrap,” she screamed. “Let me out of here!”

The pounding increased in intensity.

“There aren’t any door handles back here.”

“That’s for your own safety. Too many people threw themselves out of the cab while it was moving.”

“I shouldn’t wonder at that. I can’t roll down my window.”

“Same reason,” Butterbean said.

Butterball woofed his agreement. Either that or he meant stop. The cab bumped into something.

“Hey you idiot watch where you’re going!”

“Bite me,” yelled Blind Lemon Butterbean out through his open window. “Can’t you see the white cane on the front bumper? Are you blind too?”

Butterbean pulled his head back in the cab and leaned toward his passenger. “They’re always throwing obstacles in front of the handicapped. I tell you it’s discrimination. That’s what it is.”

“Woof.” Agreed Butterball.

Butterbean lightly goosed the gas.


“Woof,” woofed Butterball.

The cab stopped.

“A little late on that one, furball.”

“That’s it, Mac. I’m calling the cops,” yelled the driver of the whatever Butterbean had bumped into.

“Like they’re going to get through this traffic.”

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