Well, just like that it’s November and we are living in a post “Cubs are World Series Champs” world. This means anything is possible and the future is bright, right?
Or does it mean that the end times are upon us and we really don’t know what’s around the corner and we never have really known what’s around the corner so let’s just try to make it through each day the best we can and hope and pray that we are granted another day?
It’s really hard to say.
Those familiar with this blog may remember that November has always been “the month of personal reflection” and so it is, once again, time to turn inward and take stock and get real quiet and maybe step back and regroup and just sit down for a little bit.
UNRELATED TO THIS, there is this hashtag on the social medias every time this year that goes a little like this: #nanowrimo2016. Have you seen it? Well, the 2016 part is new. Last year it was 2015, and if anyone of us is around next year most likely it will say 2017 at the end. It’s short for “National Novel Writing Month”, where potential authors sign up to challenge themselves to write a novel in a month. Or maybe not a full novel, but you pledge to write 50,000 words in the 30 days of November. I guess that can be a novel, or at least a big chunk of one.
Now here we are already at November 5, (Happy Guy Fawkes day, everyone! Do you have your copies of “V for Vendetta” ready for a group read tonight?), so it looks like I’ve missed the window this year. NOT THAT I FEEL LIKE I HAVE A NOVEL INSIDE ME, mind you. But maybe this is just the thing that someone who WANTS to write one can use to help them along? Sort of like the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, but cheaper and you don’t have to eat corn. The URL is http://nanowrimo.org/ if you are interested.
A few years ago now, I joined an online book club to read “Moby Dick” and it was a pretty worthwhile experience. I mean, the actually reading of “Moby Dick” wasn’t, but writer Joe Hill was a part of it and would tweet out his progress and a group of us would offer encouragement when we felt like giving up. (I felt like giving up a number of times, but powered through and I think I am better for it. I just never want to read it again.) I don’t even know if the book club continued after that first book. I was pretty drained from the whole thing, but now I can put “read Moby Dick” on my tombstone, so I guess it was all worth it.
Instead of banging out 50,000 words on a novel this month, I think I am going to try to get back into keeping a daily journal. I used to do that all the time, and I’ve been off and on over the recent years. I started reading “The Trumpet of the Swan” by E.B. White to my daughter this morning, and wouldn’t you know? The 11-year-old protagonist keeps a daily journal, which reminded me that this was something I used to do, and could do again.
Journal writing has proved to be helpful to me in the past. It is part record of the day, part meditation, part prayer, part “let’s get these awful ugly thoughts out of my head and onto this page”, part “maybe if I write these awful ugly thoughts out they won’t seem so overwhelming”, part shopping list, part brain organizer, etc etc. The entries can range from one or two sentences about the days events, to pages long rants and ramblings that would probably worry any snoopers.
Anyway, I know we are already into November, but starting today let’s just see how it goes. Maybe I’ll report back in early December to see how long I can keep it up?