November Announcments

Today is Monday, the day I talk about the issues concerning Friday.  Today’s issue is: Blog Writing.

Hello my faithful following of fans, all 20 of you.  It’s time for a fireside chat with me, the author of Pessimistic Ponderings.  I started the blog in an attempt to force myself to write again.  I like writing, but I’ve gotten lazy due to a lack of audience.  Writing isn’t easy, as folks don’t think about it after they leave college.  I’ve tried starting a few writing groups, but it seems that I’d have to go to graduate school and become an MFA to find the people that would be interested in such a task.  I’m not about to put myself through the trauma of graduate school because to an outsider, graduate school looks like a special version of hell.

I want to be an author.  I really do.  This blog was an attempt to get out of the rut of not writing and force myself to knock the rust off my one talent.  I’ve written only one novel in my lifetime, and at the age of 31 that is sad.  I should be doing more.  The one novel I’ve written was just after I graduated from college and it’s titled: “Babe, A Guy’s Version Of A Love Story.”  It’s not edited and it desperately needs to be edited, but I wrote it.  It’s 124 pages of comedy and drama and I love it.  I felt an immense amount of pride in that accomplishment, and I want to do it again.

A few Novembers I’ve taken part in NaNoWriMo, a competition to write the first draft of a novel in one month (at least 50,000 words.  I’ve attempted it 4 times so far.  Each attempt was awful and I deleted the result (or hid it on a secret file deep in the forgotten places of my computer).  This time I’m going to try again and see it through.  The first time I attempted it I wrote a vampire story that my friend Jimmy sort of dared me to write, but I didn’t get very far in it and from when I hear, he’s taking the idea back.  The second was the furthest I’ve gotten was 23,000 words in a zombie story that never actually mentioned any zombies.  The third and fourth attempts were with the same story that was going to be a “Ender’s Game” situation married to “1984”, and both attempts did not go well.  NaNoWriMo doesn’t produce the best work, but it does produce a first draft, and that’s something to work on.  I’ll be participating again this year.

So what does that mean for this blog?  I’m not shutting it down, but I am going to relax a bit.  In order to dedicate more time to NaNoWriMo, I’m going to stop writing the Friday “The Issues” posts.  Currently I spend about 3 hours writing a post (about an hour a page).  It’s not my best work, but it is good practice.  I feel like I’m rushing these stories out there, but I justify it because you are getting more than what you paid for.  The trouble is the economics of the situation.  I spend about 3 hours a post and the entirety of my audience spends about an hour and a half reading them.  It’s a bit disheartening, but I’ve soldiered on hoping my readership would expand.  It has, a bit, but I’m still spending more time writing than people are reading.  Currently, I don’t receive any kind of reimbursement for writing these blog posts.  I’m cutting back my weekly commitment to this blog from 6 hours a week to 3, because writing two blog posts a week and 12,500 words per day in a novel I haven’t really fleshed out yet is too much.

Maybe to celebrate NaNoWriMo, I can post the worst parts of the story I’m writing for everyone to laugh at.  I need to keep the same pace I maintained while writing The 2nd Grade Mafia, writing about 2,000 words a day, which comes out to around 3-4 pages.

After November I’m going to take it easy to enjoy the holidays and take a break from the insane self-imposed workload I’ve put on myself.  I’m giving myself an extra week to finish the NaNoWriMo competition, because a week of November I’ll be on vacation and I need to enjoy that vacation rather than stare at a notebook.  Maybe I can get to 30,000 words this year!

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