“go alone — crawl, stumble, stagger — but go alone”
“You must be Independent, Independent, Independent –— don’t talk so much but do more — go your own way and let your neighbour go his… Shake off all the props — the props tradition and authority give you and go alone — crawl, stumble, stagger — but go alone.”
~ Charles Rennie Mackintosh
Independent, YES, for sure! (Original would be nice too, but is not necessary. I mention it because I think people often confuse independence with originality, which can be a real problem for their creativity and productivity, but maybe that’s a post for another day.) Neighbors — oh, there are many I’d gladly follow home. Don’t think I have too many props to shake off, but am willing to crawl, etc., if needed. BUT I love this guy’s designs (behold one iteration of his famous rose) … just not 100% sure about his ideas.
More to the point of this post: writing can be lonely, not for the bloggiest of bloggers maybe, but for lots of the rest of us. So, just so I can connect (or in hopes of connecting … even if I don’t know it’s happened), I am giving myself permission to quote other people liberally here in my blog or provide links to whatever, anything I feel like doing this month (so pretty much like every other month!), as I work to put out 1700+ words per day for NaNoWriMo.
It’s Day 2 and I’ve done 2,345 words (not bad, the quantity I mean), but my narrative point of view is shifting all over the place and not in a clever way. Plus my tenses are sliding, willy nilly, forward and backward and off to the side (though that’s typical for me because sometimes I do feel like past, present, future, etc., are all here in the same place at the same time). Also, even though every 50 words or so come easy, these are followed by hundreds that feel like I am punching myself in the face or, no: trying to put on clothes that are a few sizes too small … and wet and itchy too. I’m haunted about how little I feel I know about the world, how my seven-year-old referred to me as “odd” today, how my main character is male again (and apparently has two interchangeable names). I’m also bothered that I can’t picture him clearly yet, but I can see what he sees, feel what he feels, etc.
I’m thinking, he could look like this:
(This is a young[er] Tom Brosseau and here’s a song of his: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5vcWe–L7AM)
(The is the young, late Vic Chesnutt and one of his tunes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2KyL1MlqW0)
No surprise that I’m conjuring the images of song writers I greatly admire to help embody my protagonist. No surprise, but no explanation (now) either. In the end, it doesn’t really matter who I’m picturing anyway, I just need to see his face. And I can’t yet.
On the bright side, whatever he turns out looking like, I like him a lot so far and that’s helpful because I will be meeting with Nohl/Ben every day (or as often as I can) until we get his story done.
The first one looks as droopy as his shirt.
Good luck with your narrative. Don’t worry about quality just yet, the point of November and all its madness is to get words on paper… you can clean them up later.
Yes, I keep telling myself that, but it’s hard for an ex-editor. I am soooo ex too — as many of blog entries show. But when I think about Writing a Novel, I freak. THANKS!
Also, did you ever try it? I did once (tried), but that was even worse timing than this. I finally just figured out that there’s never going to be a perfect time, as is true for so many things.