Archive for October, 2004

Crazy Writers

I can’t believe I haven’t come across this before now. It seems I’ve been letting my attention slip away from all of the new and cool crazes in my post-college, married life.

Anyway, NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) is a (multi) nation-wide event in which many thousands of insane people each try to write a 50,000-word short novel, from scratch, in November. After excitedly reading through the site, including many of the forum posts, I found myself halfway through a detailed plot outline before I started thinking rationally about this. 50,000 words in 30 days? That’s 1667 words (or nearly five pages) a day, with no break.

I can’t even manage to take a vitamin every morning for a week!

I do think it’s a very cool idea. This is a terrific use of the Internet to bring a large group of like-minded people together to do something passionate and downright amazing. And the support network they’ve built around it is nothing short of stunning. There are local events organized throughout the month just about anywhere you might find yourself writing a novel.

In junior high school, I wanted to be a pulp novelist for a short while (yes, the random obsessions can be traced back at least that far). While the career plans eventually changed, I never did lose respect for the written word, though I more commonly find myself on the reader’s side of the relationship. If only for the sake of my erstwhile self, I would love to participate, but I know I just won’t make time to commit to such a large undertaking this year. Oh well, there’s always next year!

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Once more, with feeling

As anyone in my family knows, I’m a particularly terrible communicator. People will often go weeks without hearing a word from me. Also, when I develop a new interest, I tend to obsess about it for a short time only to drop it just as quickly when the next shiny object catches my eye.

For example, a couple years ago I was obsessed with making my own mustard. There are fancy shops that sell little gift packages of “gourmet” mustard, and I figured I could do just as well! It’s a process that involves grinding up mustard seeds and mixing them with vinegar and other interesting ingredients. I think. I really can’t remember, but I still have a mostly-unused box of Ball canning jars and boxes of mustard seeds in my cupboard.

Understanding this about myself, it is with low expectations that I jump on the blog bandwagon. I’ve decommissioned the placeholder I’ve had at frankpape.com for years (never got around to finishing that “personal site” redesign), and replaced it with this. Now, perhaps for the next several days or even weeks, I’ll come here to post about what’s going on or something that I find interesting.

Who knows? Maybe I’ll prove myself wrong and I can laugh about it here a year from now. Or maybe you’re looking at this in October of 2005 with one or two entries above it. If that’s the case, I probably haven’t died or disappeared. I just saw something shiny.

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