Thursday, June 05, 2008


That is the way in which my friend Helen referred to this crazy lone-wolf pursuit of mine to write a novel in thirty days. It isn't really nanowrimo, as I am not doing it in November with all of the good support of the usual national novel writing participants.

It is Madnowrimo - meaning one of several things, depending on the hour:
  1. Madeline's novel writing month
  2. Mad (as in utterly insane) for choosing to write a novel this month
  3. Madly (as in obsessively, but with a joyful skipping-through-the -flower-fields-and-glens feeling) novel-writing this month
  4. Mad for not writing in the same month as inspiring people like Alecto and Jessica.
  5. Mad no wri' mo'!
So far, in the brief four and a half days I have been doing this, it has mostly felt like #3. But there have also been moments of #2.

I read that the first week is always a breeze compared to the rest of the month. Once I am in week three I can imagine being reduced to a blubbering, barely audible #5, all of the words I have heard of in my entire life having been used up in the previous days' word counts, my brain a warped, gray, plastic tub of sour grape jelly.

As for the story, I usually don't know what is going to happen next and that is exciting. So far, the book is about a fourteen year old, Flogging Molly-loving farmer-boy named Finn, a somewhat bewildered Irish ghost who starved to death in the potato famine of 1849, and a quest to find Finn's missing father who may have the answer to the bees' Colony Collapse Disorder, but could also be the reason that the African bees were released in Brazil, thus having caused the beginning of Aricanized killer bee colonies that have reached the United States.

I am writing while Jesse is in day camp, for several hours every day. Yesterday, with Gillen gone those hours as well, I stayed at the computer and forgot to eat anything but chocolate and was a depleted mess by dinner time.

The writing is so much fun that I could imagine doing it on a regular basis, even if just to then read it to my children. But with them around, the words don't make themselves heard so loudly. The words don't like interruptions. So I am enjoying this now for all it's worth.


Kat said...

Your book sounds so interesting. Keep working like a mad woman. And the chocolate has to help, right?

Madeline said...

Thanks Kat. Chocolate helps everything. yes. But in combination with other food groups. ; )

Erikka said...

Sounds good already! I hope you share some of it with us still when it is finished :)

Good luck!

Alecto said...

Madeline, that is just so cool. I found it harder in the middle and so set my eye on the word count and just kept typing no matter what. I also did not edit during the first 30 days, at all, unless I'd made a major plot shift and had to go back and at least make notations about what had to change during edit. Same goes for word smithing, grammar and spelling. Just let it all out however it comes out. Sounds fabulous, by the way.

Madeline said...

Thanks for the encouragement. I confess to going back and editing several times. I am a born editor. That's why this word count is the way to go for me as I have to keep going and not just keep rewriting chapter one. I think I'll try to not go back at all anymore. Alecto, do you still work on your's?

Oh, and I will share here when it's over. If I get to the end I'll be so damn happy with myself, I'll have to share a good paragraph or two for the record.

Alecto said...

Madeline, I would love to work on mine (and 50,000 words feels like chapter heaadings after all that) except it ended up hitting so close to home I couldn't look at it. And then Jeffrey died in December and I seriously couldn't look at it. I'm guessing when the rawness wears off I can go back and clean it up and will probably really like it. Because I stopped editing and stopped thinking and just wrote I opened up the most amazing can of worms and out popped a story! Go for it!

Madeline said...

Alecto, "50,00 words feels like chapter headings!" wow. You'll know when it's time and you could always start a new one as well. I so remember Kate (?), though, and would love to know what happened to her.