What’s Up?

The sky, of course.

And besides that, it might be a good time to give you an idea of what to expect from me in the days ahead. I’m participating in two challenges, one new and one old, and I’m pretty excited about both of these.

First of all, in October I’m trying a blog challenge courtesy of Jane Ann McLachlan. I’ve never participated in a challenge to write blog posts before but I’ll do pretty much anything for a little inspiration when it comes to writing. Jane’s challenge interested me right away because I’d already been in a nostalgic mood and thinking about putting that to use in my blog. Her challenge will help to focus that nostalgia for me.

Jane’s challenge presents us with this theme:

“Write a memory or reflection for each of the first 25 years of life. It can be a personal memoir from your life, a reflection on turning a certain age, a recollection of someone else at that age, a poem or a photo, on the ages 1 to 25.”

The challenge?

To write at least 25 of these posts in the month of October. (Eeeks!) Admittedly, this is going to be a tough one for me.

From what I gather, flexibility and creativity in this theme are welcome so it won’t have to be just be a boring rendition of, “this one time at band camp…”

I’ve not found an official linky list or sign-up sheet for this challenge but if you click on the link I attached above, you’ll find all the details that you need to participate if you so desire.

Once we make our way through October, it’s November! November! November! Don’t know why I’m excited about November? Have you been living under a rock? November is National Novel Writing Month, aka Nanowrimo. You can find the details and sign-up on the official site HERE.

(Add me as a buddy while you’re at it. My user name is StephIngram.)

The challenge?

50,000 words in the month of November!

I know a lot of fellow writers who plot and plan, fill out outlines and character sheets, and have a pretty good idea of what they want to write before they sit down on November 1st and let the words start flowing but me? Nah. I embrace the challenge wholeheartedly. I look at Nanowrimo as my time to PLAY! When I sit down on November 1st, at first I might have a scene in my head or the seed of an idea starting to take root but I won’t know who my characters are and I won’t know what sort of mischief they plan to get up to over the course of the next thirty days. I realize some writers consider this reason for heart palpitations and cold sweats but to me, it’s pure bliss.

I just want to write and create and not care about whether the end result is actually reader-worthy. (As a matter of fact, history proves that it won’t be.) But that’s kind of the point, right? The rest of the year my inner editor gets to tell me that what I’m writing isn’t good enough or try to push me into a direction that I feel like I should take, rather than want to take. During November, it’s goodbye editor and hello fun.

And let’s face it, the Nanowrimo forums and community offer new friendships, encouragement, and inspiration for the entire month. Writing 50,000 words in a single month in and of itself isn’t really anything special or exciting but doing it alongside a multitude of other like-minded people is what gives it that special sparkle. (Don’t believe me? Try it! I dare you…)

To make it even sweeter, this isn’t just any old year for me doing Nanowrimo. This is an anniversary of sorts. This is my 5th year!! I first discovered and participated in Nanowrimo in 2008. I didn’t know what to expect that year and I didn’t expect to write 50,000 words but I surprised myself and I did it. By the end of it, I was hooked and I went on to win in 2009, 2010, and 2011. This year will be no exception.

So, what does this mean to you? Well, in essence, it means that once you’ve suffered through a month of reminiscing with me about my first twenty-five years of life, I’m going to drag you straight into the madness that is Nanowrimo. Consider yourself warned.

So… Are you with me or against me? What challenges will you embrace over the coming months?

One thought on “What’s Up?

  1. Mae Claire says:

    They both sound like wonderful things to do, Stephanie.I’ll be looking forward to your reflections in October. And good luck with Nanowrimo. I’ve never participated berfore and looked into doing it this year. Unfortunately, I already have 9600 words of the novel I wanted to work on written, so it looks like I’m not eligible as it looked like from the rules I read you can’t start the project until 11/1. Bummer. Maybe I can catch it next year. I always wanted to give it a try!

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