Posted by: dougery | October 27, 2010

NaNoWriMo Mind Storm

November is almost upon us, a month that means many things. For me it is when my beloved Bills are eliminated from contention (although this year that happened before the season began), when I usually grow a misguided if not fairly impressive ‘stache, when Lara and I have the family over for Thanksgiving. But November is also National Writing Month and home to most batshit literary throwdown ever, NaNoWrimo. What is NaNoWriMo? I’m glad you asked.

Picture a marathon. Now multiply it by 5. Please understand the marathon is all in your mind–your body, as stressed as it may be, will feel little or nothing. You will be running this quintuple marathon all in your head. On a road of glass. While walking on your hands. Oh, and you are in labor (girls) or passing a kidney stone (fellas) because this is what it will feel like to write 50,000 words in just 30 days. Every November NaNoWriMo collects the best, most delusional, insane, casually psychotic, morally bankrupt and genuinely sweet people on the planet and grinds their typing fingers into paste.

Last year I bombed, horribly. My idea was to write a western, a genre I have little familiarity with. Oh, and the entire plot was based on the lyrics of a single Bob Dylan song so like, in the bag, right? No. I outlined and conceived characters and spat out 2500 words before crashing and burning. It was terrible. But this time… this time… this time I haven’t the foggiest what I will be writing about. That is what this blog post is for. A mind storm. To try and figure out what will sustain me for the grueling march ahead. Readers, I welcome your thoughts.

Things I know pretty well

Dinosaurs, Baseball, Comicbooks, Architecture, Indie/Punk music, Fantasy/Post-Apocalyptic fiction, 1994-2003, 2005-present, Zombies, Robots.

Things I really admire but could never, ever pull off

Noir, Westerns, Space operas, cops and “___” stuff  like the Wire, satires like the Simpsons, Epic or High fantasy such as LotR or GRRM.

Writers that kick my ass

Donald Westlake, Thomas Pynchon, Joseph Conrad, Just about any Russian, John Fowles (I so wish I’d written the Magus), My wife.

Favorite colors in descending order

Blue, Green, Purple, Red, Orange, Yellow

Favorite numbers in descending order

4, 2, 1, 9, 5, 3, 8, 6, 7

There, that should do it. Somewhere up there is my muse. Somewhere up there is the answer to my NaNoWriMo puzzle. Somewhere up there is my doom.



  1. Dude, a Western with dinosaurs written like a Conrad novel (especially “Heart of Darkness”) with the color purple acting as a sort of Godfather-and-oranges symbol of death and the number 9 acting as a cryptic code throughout the book.

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