It is true. I once saw a facebook post that went something like this,
Warning! If you are in my life long enough
I may just write you into my novel.
The idea is simple, we writers are inspired by what is around us.
In 2010 I completed the National Novel Writing Month ( NANOWRIMO). The goal is to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. NANOWRIMO is held in the month of November, but they encourage you to take the NANOWRIMO challenge any time. I know it seems impossible to write 50,000 word in one month, but it breaks down to only 1,666 words a day. The goal is to get it on paper, not edit, just purge your thoughts. Some people prepare an outline, others dive right in. There are all sorts of ways to approach NANOWRIMO. I completed NANOWRIMO in 2010 and polished the book and then put it away. I would like to get it published one day, but I relish in the accomplishment of finishing it. When I was done, I gave a very rough draft to my 25 year old daughter to read. She said, “That is my life you are writing about.” I think she felt cheated. Though I do claim ownership, it is part her life, part my life, part make believe. I pulled from what I know. The scenes of things in my head, which just happened to be part of her life. Since I gave birth to her, I suppose I have rights.
WINFIN is Write Nonfiction in November. Same challenge but, in my opinion a bit harder. Writing nonfiction, unless you know the subject very, very well demands research. So writing is more than just writing and vomiting a bunch of words on the page, they have to mean something very substantial to be called nonfiction. I podcasted about NANOWRIMO and WINFIN a few years ago. Give a listen. Again, I write nonfiction because it is from life, my own experiences and interests. I guess I’m stealing from life.
Recently I learned about the PiBoIdMo challenge. PiBoIdMo is Picture Book Idea Month. In this article, “Pre-PiBo Day 5: Kate Dopirak: A Reader. A Writer. A Thief?” by Kate Dopirak I learn that she also steals from her children’s experiences. So, I am not alone here.
I’m extremely interested in PiBoIdMo, you see, I’m a published writer of adult nonfiction, but the novel I created in 2010 for NANOWRIMO was MG/YA (Middle Grade/ Young Adult) I have a tendency to be drawn to literature for younger people. I also have a new source of inspiration that is quickly coming into my life, GRANDCHILDREN!
Just prior to all of these writing challenges came Halloween, which was so much more fun being connected socially. I might not have that great of a social life but my facebook friends sure do. My daughter-in-law posted that her 2 1/2 year old went to the door and said chicken free (trick or treat) & happy Halloween! You should hear here try to sing Bippity, Boppity boo. I’m extremely impressed with my granddaughters made up language, and intrigued at how she evaluates and dissects the world around her. I also have a new born grandson and a granddaughter coming in March. Oh, just think of all that inspiration. I have no doubt that this time in my life, my “watching” of grandchildren will impart a creative spurt in a new direction. I must remind myself “work it grandma, work it.” So, watch out. If we are sitting next to each other at the children’s museum or the park, take note, your children are safe, but I just may steal their dialogue and adventures.