- NaNo is a no-go this year. My creative writing class has me blissfully writing everyday and, unless a collection of "stream of consciousness" writings count towards a 50,000 word novel, there will be no NaNo.
- I'm actually ok with not participating in NaNo this year. Really.
- I have a new addiction. Reuben sandwiches. I had my first one this weekend, which is odd considering my father LOVED them and my mom eats them every chance she gets. I think the whole sauerkraut thing scare me. Facing your fears can be tasty!
Something my creative writing professor said last week has really stuck with me. "Creative writers write from life". This goes back to that old, terribly over spoken phrase "Write what you know". I used to balk at this, thinking, "but I don't want to write about growing up in suburbia with a dog and a rabbit that attacked my cousin." I have learned through this class that this isn't exactly what that phrase means.
One of our exercises last week was to list at least five things about ourselves that was unique, that we could dive deeper into and write about. I found myself thinking about my ancestors, how they came from Ireland and settled in the south. I wondered about my grandfather's grandparents who came over the Appalachian mountains in a covered wagon to settle in north Georgia. The Appalachian region has been haunting me lately, which explains my sudden craving for bluegrass music and black eyed peas. I wonder where this could lead?
The point is not that I'm strange, but that we all have things in our past that make up a delicious soup of awesome. One we can all ladle up and write about. I've been thinking more and more about researching my family history to dig up some stories. Turn up that old soil and see what's there. We all have so much holding us up, so many people who have gone before us. What were their stories? How do their stories translate into our own lives?
What about you? What do you know? Where did you come from? How can you turn your past, maybe even a past you don't know, into stories that speak to the here and now?
Trust me when I tell you this exercise is very, very enlightening! Have fun! Be bold!
And be FABULOUS!