It’s not exactly a secret that I do a fair bit of writing. I’ve been pretty good about keeping pace in this webspace, posting thrice weekly, and even if a fair bit of my writing is working through a re-read of novels, novellas, and stories I love, it’s still writing–and not all of the writing I do here is on that project. Nor yet is this the only place where I present my writing, as this and this attest, as well as the conference presentations I still occasionally do. And my mostly-online roleplaying games involve no small amount of writing, too, both in the actual play and in the chatter that surrounds it.
I have tended to struggle, however, with writing narratives of one sort or another. I may be able to put together the occasional vignette taken from my daily life–like this, this, this, this, or this–but longer works have tended to elude me. Too, I do tend more toward a poetic voice than a narrative one, working with sound rather than story, even though I know prose fares better with more people than verse. “Poetry’s hard,” after all, and more people are lazy than aren’t. (For the record, I include myself among that group.)
For the record, I don’t intend on giving up the work I’m already doing. I’ll keep moving forward with the Robin Hobb Reread, which I am flattered to note is getting a fair bit of attention from folks. I’ll also doubtlessly keep going with the other blogging I do, here and elsewhere. I have responsibilities with one of the other blogs, at least, and I try not to let people down. (It still happens, and far more than I like, but I try, dammit.) But I think I will try to address the deficiency in composing an extended narrative–I think I’m going to try to do NaNoWriMo. Kind of.
I know it shows up in my biographical information that I’ve put in a fair bit of time on medieval studies. A lot of it has been more “medievalism studies,” to be fair, looking at how the medieval gets mis/used, but there’s no way to do that work without having a solid grounding in the traditional medieval; one has to understand the references to get the jokes. As such, I’m fairly steeped in the idea of narrative poetry–and, as noted above, I do better with poetry than with narrative prose. So I mean to spend my NaNoWriMo trying to put together a narrative poem.
By the usual standards, I’d have to write something like 1,667 words each day across the thirty days of November to make the 50,000-word expectation. There will be a few days, at least, that I cannot guarantee being able to sit down and write the equivalent of a five-page paper, although I remember being able to knock out five to ten pages with ease when I was appropriately motivated. I’ve got a decent chance at getting the work done, and I think it’s worth a try to do so.
We’ll see how it goes!