I’ve always found writing to be a solitary activity. Not simply in it’s condition; the inability for more than one person to think the same thought at the same time and to express it simultaneously, or, somehow achieving that, sharing a keyboard, tablet, or pencil meant for a single person; but in the demand for personal isolation to write effectively, the need to be apart from others, from their noise, from even the thought of them.
I don’t mind this. I’ve never been one to shy from solitude.
Such is not the leading thought in NaNoWriMo. The prevalent theme in my local writing group and on twitter, on facebook, et al, is one of the “we’re all in this together” in the Garfield “I hate mondays” sense. A mountain from a molehill, a gathering of strength to face an onslaught of grievously ill butterflies. Less obtusely, the community seems a forced, cutesy thing, populated, not be serious writers but, by spare time scribblers. People who proudly boast of high word counts or even more proudly lament their inability to reach each daily goal due to circumstances, the latter leading into a cycle of self-bolstering through declarations of future success. It’s a bit like my ancestors who’d drink to their victory the eve before a battle, showing up to fight hungover or still quite pissed.
I’ve never known a reader over the age of four to judge the quality of a book by the number of words it contains.
Lest you think this sour missive stems from unobtainable grapes, my current word count is 25,192, nearly 200 words past today’s pre-set goal. This should mark the halfway point of my novel, and while it does have a beginning and an ending, I’m rather less sure of the middle. I’ve two more weeks to finish it and I’ve no doubt of attaining some form of rough draft, but it will surely be a problematic one.
This leads me back to my first complaint. I don’t understand the discussion, the pedestrian, or more accurately, the plebeian, exchanges of vernacular between november writers about their problems. How does one write? Well, by writing.
I had such hopes for meeting other writers in my area.
At least I’m safe in my solitude, armored with headphones, defended by the faraway blindness come of removing my glasses.