Last November I picked up the challenge to write a 50,000 word novel in a month. A crazy thing to do when you only decide to go for it on October 31st, so no plot outline, or character profiles, or story arc or any of that.
Just sit down every day and write 1666.666 words every day for 30 days.
I did it anyway.
Unlike some who started that marathon I did actually finish, as well! Me and thousands of others. Just a personal challenge...
I can't understand why a person will take a year to write a novel when he can easily buy one for a few dollars. Fred Allen
It sat around for months awaiting 'revision' and 'editing' and 're-writing' and all that stuff. In fact it should probably go in a drawer somewhere to be discovered after my death - and then either read once or burned.
Still, in the modern world I think of it as raw material...and as I want to write a colourful autobiography (now that I lived the life) I don't really want to dwell on this, or get so perfectionist that I hate it, hide it, bin it. And anyway, November fast approaches so I may want to do the whole same thing again!
Why not join me at NaNoWriMo! Ahem.
All sorts of other challenges exist, as you can see on their follow-up page (draw a comic book, write a script, whatever). This also has some very worthy stuff about seriously re-writing if you want to find a publisher. And yes, well, I know all that - I don't think I'm Kerouac or that the zeitgeist needs me.
I decided to experiment with Lulu (reading their How-To descriptions doesn't work for me).
I really don't expect anyone to respect this as anything more than a hilarious rough draft, with flat days of no inspiration, bright ideas never followed up, etc. Still, I wanted to see it in book form. And funnily enough, I noticed that NaNoWriMo have thought of offering a hard copy as a prize to every 'winner' (people who complete the challenge on time) so perhaps it's not such a daft idea.
I asked the magnificent Bobby if he could make me a cover...and he did. I tweaked the writing for typos, etc. I wondered about using 'real people' (as they turned up when my imagination failed) or 'real events' (some of which seem like fiction to me looking back) - but I didn't really have time (at the time) to stop to think.
So (to quote Bob D) "I re-arranged their faces, and gave them all another name". And got it done. For those who care about the Jabba escapade, this describes me back out on the streets, homeless, a year after that high point... Yeah, a little bit of truth...
I have put in an order for one copy of the thing as a 'book' (hard copy) so I can proof-read it and revise if necessary - and I wouldn't recommend it to anyone at this point, but I like to share experiences, so this direct URL will already show you the idea, and it would even work to download a PDF version, or buy a print-on-demand copy for anyone who wants to play. :-)
Then I would have 'sold' a book, which would make me jump around like an Olympic champion (just like when I sold my first Star Wars autograph).
Right now I doubt that I will do more than order a few copies for family and friends, just for my own amusement. Fun though! I got inspired by the thought of receiving hard copy of our online magazine - Maybe Quarterly - a project we ran this summer rather than produce yet another online version (we did 14 so far). One thing leads to another...