If I’ve learned anything, it’s that so much can happen in two months. Sooooo much.
My last post was in late August, and at that point, I’d made tentative writing plans for the next few months. For those who don’t feel like clicking the link, a summary: I resolved to work on short stories and flash fiction until mid-September, which I did…albeit half-assedly. From 9/16 to 10/31, the goal was Nanowrimo prep. And I also made the foolish mistake of asking my Facebook friends if any of them would be interested in buying a list of horror-themed short stories, if I made a collection available in October, so I threw that onto my ever-growing To Do list and hoped for the best.
As things stand, at midnight on Halloween, I am soooo not ready for Nanowrimo, and I don’t have a single story ready for my horror collection. But I do have excuses, explanations, and a plan to rehabilitate my less-than-productive situation.
Explanations/excuses first, yeah? Yeah.
So, back in July, I broke a tooth. It hurt, it was humiliating, and I hated it. It pretty much consumed all of my time and focus, outside of work. After a lot of back and forth with my home dentist, specialists, etc, they determined that I (possibly) needed a root canal–a procedure not covered by my insurance. I struggled with this situation for over a month and a half, until an unexpected solution presented itself: I made an appointment with a dentist in Alabama, recommended by my brother, and flew home to have the root canal done; I would have to cover the expense out of pocket, sure, but at least it would be done by someone I could trust. Luckily, when I went for my consultation, it was determined that the cavity wasn’t right on the root, and I could get away with a very (very!!!) deep filling. With that taken care of, I could finally stop stressing out and get back on track with…everything. Maybe.
Now, I also decided to multitask, since I was heading south. I put in a bunch of job applications, with mixed results. I had an interview at Michaels while I was in Tuscaloosa, and it went well enough, but the position was part-time and the manager was open about the fact that they could only offer me minimum wage…three dollars less than my current hourly wage. I was considering the offer, when something better presented itself, unexpectedly. It’s still retail, but the pay is better, they’re offering more hours and, most importantly, it’s in a town I like which gives me the opportunity to move back in with the most awesome friend/roommate in the world. It’s a welcome change, and I’m excited to move…
I’m flying home on the first. Nanowrimo starts on the first. I only got back to New York on October 17th, and I got the call from HR on the 20th, which means that I’ve been trying to pack and clean and prep for the last eleven days, in addition to working. Needless to say, my novel prep time has been limited and my output has been virtually nonexistent. I considered not participating this year…but I really, really feel like Nano-ing this November. I need to redeem myself for the past few years of failure and my current lack of creative output. But with no outline and no time to come up with a solid, pants-worthy novel concept (I’d reeeeally have to have a lot of faith in an idea, to even consider pantsing), I needed a Plan B.
Enter the horror anthology.
I’m going into November as a Nano Rebel, working on short fiction instead of a novel, and I think it’s going to be a lot of fun! I already have a list of story ideas that just need to be written. I even have a list of backup concepts, in case I don’t actually like some of the completed stories in the end. Short fiction will be easier to jump into sporadically, unlike a novel, which demands a more singular focus; I’ll need to be able to write in random bursts, as I settle into a new job and re-acclimate to the area. Obviously, this collection won’t be ready for Halloween this year, barring some major time travel on my part, but I’m hoping that I’ll have something I’m proud of when I’m done editing and compiling. If so, I may self-publish the collection next fall.
Sooo…that’s where I stand right now. I’m going to take a nap, finish cleaning, review my story synopses, and get ready for my flight. I’m going to write my first 1k while I’m in the air on Wednesday morning! I’m excited for what’s to come in November.
Good luck, fellow Wrimos! May your last day of writing prep be filled with coffee, candy, and a minimal amount of stress. Hope we all make it to that 50k finish line together at the end of the month.