Okay, I’ve taken the plunge, or the pledge, or whatever you want to call it – I’ve committed myself to do this year’s NaNoWriMo.
For what it’s worth, my profile there is http://www.nanowrimo.org/eng/user/221406 .
If you don’t know of it, ‘National Novel Writing Month’ is a kind of collective self-challenge to write a 50,000-word novel in a month. More precisely, a first draft of what should nominally be a novel but in fact can be pretty much anything, starting 1st November and finishing 30 November. There’s no prize as such, and the only requirement to ‘win’ is to finish with a word-count above 50,000. Hence no-one has any expectations that the supposed ‘novel’ will even be readable as a novel at the end 🙂 – the real challenge is to do it at all. Last year some 79,000 people took part, and more than 13,000 completed ‘on time and on budget’ (a better success-rate than most IT projects… :wrygrin: ).
I’ll be using NaNoWriMo to do a bit more exploration into what I’ve come to call the ‘Yabbies’ space – a comparison between the day-to-day realities of the so-called ‘normal’ but non-sustainable ‘possession-economy’, and a sustainable ‘responsibility-economy’, with an emphasis on the latter.
Some of this stuff I’ve been working for decades – literally, because yesterday I rediscovered some of my notes and first couple of chapters for one of my all-too-many started-but-never-completed non-fiction book-projects, ‘The End of Ownership’, dating from way back in 1987. But as a trigger for a fictional rather than non-fiction view, the starting-point was Ursula le Guin’s masterpiece The Dispossessed [Wikipedia link]. (I’ll get round to explaining in another post as to why it was so important for my thinking: for now, all I’ll do is recommend that you read it – it’s a real eye-opener.)
Somewhen in the late 90s I nicknamed the never-quite started project ‘YABI’ (Yet Another Book Idea), which nicely linked to the south-eastern aboriginal term for common genus of freshwater crayfish, the yabby – hence ‘Yabbies’. Which became an experimental website, ‘yabbies.org’, in late 2000, and which I pulled down in 2004 or so because my ISP wouldn’t support Access-based websites any more; and an experimental screenplay in 2005, which I’ll probably put up on my main website somewhen ‘cos that’s about as far as it’ll ever go. 🙂 So the idea this time is to use many of the same characters, even some of the same settings, and see what they’ll show me about their world. Which will be imaginary at present, but perhaps not so imaginary in future?
Watch This Space, anyways. And wish me luck?