Saturday, October 26, 2019

Year of an Indie Writer: Week 43

Scott D. Parker

Who's doing NaNoWriMo?

This coming Friday is 1 November, the month associated with National Novel Writing Month. Thirty days, 50,000 words, no looking back, just charge ahead.

I'm gonna do it. Pretty sure. I wrote in this column a few weeks ago about writing short stories to get out of the slump. That's fine, but I think I'm better at writing novels. Longer works, because even my short stories are rather long. The short story I submitted to an upcoming anthology came out to nearly 8,000 words. Is that long?

So I'm looking at starting a novel this Friday. I've done NaNoWriMO before back in 2015. I've done a "NaNoWriMo" in multiple other months. Averaging 1,667 words per day can seem daunting if you've never done it before, but when you get in a groove, the words fly. My plan is to average around 800 words per writing session: one at 4:45-6:00 am and another at lunch time. That's for weekdays. Weekends should likley be early morning sessions each day.

The biggest decision between now and Halloween night will be to decide which tale to tell. I've got three in the hopper: one modern mystery, one modern slice of life story, and one...thriller. I think. I've come up with the idea for the story--based on a song, no less!--but I'm trying to figure out its style. Good thing about not planning ahead: the style will reveal itself during the writing process.

Looking forward to having some fun.

Truth Told

Do Some Damage was founded in part to discuss the writing process. All of the writers who have posted all have our own takes on the subject of writing and creativity. It's one thing to hear how we writers who are not as famous as other folks say what we have to say, but its something quite different when a person as famous as Christopher McQuarrie weighs in.

In a 24-part Twitter thread, McQuarrie speaks truth upon truth upon truth. Most of it is difficult to read, especially if you are betting on the 'lottery' [his term]. I zeroed in on Tweet #8 because it echoed what I've always called "Control the Controllables":

8. The secret to success is doing what you love, whether or not you’re being paid. The secret to a rewarding career in film (and many other fields) is focusing entirely on execution and not on result.

Read the whole thing. Print it and tape it to your writing desk.

The Great Kevin Smith Watch

In case you missed some of my other posts, I made a decision this summer: watch all twelve of Kevin Smith's films leading up to the thirteenth coming out this week here in Houston. This past Wednesday, I posted my twelfth review for Yoga Hosers. This coming Wednesday, I'll be seeing the new film, Jay and Silent Bob Reboot, at a special event here in H-Town. Smith and his friend Jason Mewes are traveling with the new movie in which they show the film to the audience and then do a question and answer session.

I'll be posting my review of the new film on 6 November, but as a placeholder, this week I'll be posting my ranking of Smith's films. I instantly knew my top three, the fourth one, and the one in dead last. What I didn't know was what film would get the top spot. I sat with a piece of paper and started putting the movies in my own order. When I finally realized which film I liked best, I looked forward to publishing the list. It's unconventional, but easy to understand if you know me and what I like.

Any ideas?

TV Show of the Week: Evil

Two Thursdays ago, my wife suggested we watch episode four of the new TV show Evil on CBS. I had seen the previews all summer long while watching Elementary. Initially it looked like something not in my wheelhouse, but I gave episode four a try.

Intrigued. Very intrigued.

Then I watched episode one. Hooked. All in.

I've now seen episodes five and two. Just have to see three and I'll be caught up.

Anyone else watching this show?

That covers it for the week. As I write this, the Houston Astros are up 4-1 in the bottom of the seventh. Hopefully when you read this tomorrow, the team from H-Town will have a World Series win in 2019.

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