I know. I've been terribly neglectful of my blog here. In truth, I've been neglectful of just about everything for the past couple of months; I was in pretty rough shape upon my return from Edinburgh, health-wise, and am as always struggling to regain some kind of equilibrium. (Sad, isn't it? I've been back since the end of August, for crying out loud.)
What's been taking most of my attention and energy at the moment, though, is something about which many of you know all too well, having survived it yourselves or, at the very least, having been part of someone's cheering section (maybe even mine): NaNoWriMo. Yes, November is National Novel Writing Month, and yes, once again I'm putting myself through the wringer. This time, though, it's different.
Remember my farewell entry to Martin Streek? I do. Vaguely. And I remember saying that, come hell or high water, I would finish the book he knew I was writing. He was, after all, the inspiration behind it. I'd started my first draft back in 2006, when it seemed like we had all the time in the world... Martin was quick to give me whatever access I needed to do "research" (and yes, it was as much fun as it sounds - and no, that wasn't meant to sound vulgar! I simply meant that "doing research" by going out clubbing isn't exactly the toughest job in the world, especially with a guy like Martin holding up the velvet ropes for me anywhere I went). He was endlessly amused at the ideas I had for his alter ego. He'd already been a fan of my writing for almost a decade before that, and I guess it was gratifying for both of us to see me try to go "legit," especially since he'd had such a significant hand in it.
Anyway. That's all very well-covered ground by now. I just wanted to post something here - for those of you who've only been peripherally aware of where the hell I've been and what on earth I'm up to - to say that yes, I'm using NaNo as the kick in the backside I so obviously need to finally give this book the life it deserves. It's been an agonizingly slow process. I know what I want to write, but each time I sit down to do so, I find myself overwhelmed by memories, emotion, and the inescapable fact that Martin will never read it. To further motivate myself, I've opted to add even more incentive: If I do, indeed, reach the goal of 50,000 words by November 30th, I'll be pledging money to a very important charity, one that seems appropriate not only because of the subject matter of the book, but because of the man who inspired me to write in the first place.
I'm way behind in my word count so far. But there's time to catch up yet. I'm not giving up, no matter how many tears I cry or how many times I hear myself saying, "You can't do it. You're not worthy of this. Quit while you're ahead." I have to ignore that voice, because there's more at stake this time than just the self-congratulatory pat on the back that will come when I hit 50K. There are people who are pledging money to the charity alongside me, and...it matters. So I'm not quitting. I will soldier on.
If you'd like to watch my progress and give me the occasional smack upside the head when I falter, start here. If you want to show your support by becoming my "fan" on Facebook, there's a page for that, too. If you want to pledge to the charity, let me know via one of my many contact routes. And come November 30th, one way or another, I'll be back to let everyone who's supporting me know that I did it, and can only hope that, if the man behind it all were still here with us, he'd be proud.
Thank you. To everyone who's had my back so far. You know who you are.