Monday, March 14, 2011


Monday McDonald is an innocent young man of little learning. His world is simple until he meets a prophet and follows him across barren lands to the shell of a once great university. There he must burn and bury the body of his teacher, the prophet, before beginning his pilgrimage.


This is an introduction to my next novel and an opportunity to talk about a wonderful challenge for writers. I wrote Graffiti during NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month. NaNo is held every November and the goal is to write 50,000 words. Yeah, that's pretty much a rough draft.

It just takes 1,675 words a day and a grin and bare it attitude. One of the fantastic things about NaNo is it forces you to turn off the inner editor and just write. Let the plot be terrible for a day or two then suddenly it turns around and slaps you with a fist of firecrackers, taking you in interesting directions, picking up characters like they're hitchhikers until you end up painting a sunset with a new friend in a quirky little town just south of Gillespie.

This was the first year I succeeded in hitting the goal. In all my prior years, I netted 30,000 words--a healthy chunk of a new novel--for which I was very proud. But it was amazing to finally cross that 50k line. Once Strong Enough is off my writing plate, I'll feast on Graffiti, and this November I will write Lily.

Not everyone can write a novel in 15 days like Amanda Hocking. (BTW, found a new blog by Zoe Winters thanks to Amanda!) Nor does everyone have the stamina to write 350,000 in 2011 (saw this on Zoe's blog) but maybe, just maybe, this November you can join NaNoWriMo and put words to paper on that one story that's been rattling around in your head for 6 years.

That's what I did.