Death and Halloween

A few days away till the best holiday of all… Halloween!

Spirits, witches, pumpkins, and candy (LOTS of candy)… what is there not to love?

For some, Oct 31st is a secular holiday dedicated to trick or treating, parties, and telling ghostly tales whilst sitting round the parlor.

For others, it is a spiritual time. A night to contact one’s departed, as well as marking the end of the harvest as the dark half of the year begins. A time of endings, and beginnings.

For all who celebrate All Hallows, it is the symbol of Death which is most prominent. Not the scary Death of Hollywood, but the mysterious comforter. For all are equal in Her embrace.

“-I’m not blessed, or merciful. I’m just me. I’ve got a job to do, and I do it. Listen: even as we’re talking, I’m there for old and young, innocent and guilty, those who die together and those who die alone. I’m in cars and boats and planes; in hospitals and forests and abbatoirs. For some folks death is a release, and for others death is an abomination, a terrible thing. But in the end, I’m there for all of them.”- Death from Gaiman’s, Sandman

Published in: on October 28, 2011 at 12:32 pm  Comments (23)  
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All NaNos’ Eve

October 31st. 

All Hallows’ Eve.  The night when the veil between this world and the Otherworld is lifted, and spirits come to visit.  The night when people honor their dearly departed with lit candles and dumb suppers.  Men and women hold hands around tables across the world to call upon the dead.  Girls gaze in mirrors to see the faces of their future husbands.  Children bob for apples and play Trick or Treat. 

For some, Halloween is a solemn occasion.  For others, it is Samhain, the Celtic New Year.   The beginning of the dark time of year.  The time of ends, and new beginnings.   And for others, it is simply a fun time of sticky sweet candy and staying up late watching Bela Lugosi.

And then, for a small group of quite nutty (but harmless) others, it is the beginning of a fervent time called, NaNo. 

Yes.  National Novel Writing Month is here again.

I did my first NaNo in ’07.  My second in ’08.  Everyone has their own reasons for participating.  Mine was to teach me discipline.  I wanted to approach writing as a professional.  I wanted to develop the discipline to sit down at the keys when I didn’t feel like it and when the Muse was off shopping for a new dress.  In that, I succeeded.  Ever since I won my first Nano- writing everyday  has become a natural part of my life and I’m pleased with the results of such effort.

So today, I wondered- Why am I doing NaNo again?   What lesson can I gleam from it this year?  And then the answer came: abandonment.  I want to stop thinking so much of the novel I have out on submission.  I want to simply write and have fun.

So, here’s to 3o days of wildly clicking away at the keys.  Total banishment of evil inner editors.  No reading professional blogs about the dire state of the publishing world.  I’m going to write in total, wonderful, ignorant bliss.

For those of you doing NaNo- what are your reasons?

And Happy Halloween, everyone!

Happy Halloween…Err…NaNo!

For mortals and the Dearly Departed tomorrow is October 31st.   A day of pumpkins, costumes, and bags full of mini-chocolate bars, m&ms, and candy corn.  For others it is the Celtic New Year, for others a Sabbat in which to honor ancestors.

For writers- it is, “Oh, my Gawd!  NaNo begins at the stroke of midnight!”

Believe me- that is much more frightening than any ghouls or hands reaching out of graves. Those at least can be exorcised.

But NaNo?   NaNo is the ultimate monster that CANNOT BE KILLED!  It mercilessly, incessantly attacks for an entire month straight turning writers into the very zombies that normal folk watched on their TV on Halloween.

For those who may not know what NaNo is:

National Novel Writing Month.   The goal is to write 50,000 words in 30 days.  Crazy, huh?  Yup!  That’s the point.  The joy of turning off the inner-editor and letting all the words pour out of your head onto the paper.  No worrying at all.  No editing.  Pure insanity.

I participated last year for the first time and had a blast.   How could I not enjoy something that crazy?  Oh, the endless nights!  The never-ending cups of green tea!  The agony and escasty poured out onto writing forums across the Internet.

So what am I doing this year?

Finishing this draft!  That’s what!  Or, in other words- cheating.  Ya see- NaNo has this rule that states the work should be a totally fresh piece of work.   Personally, I see no difference in going from zero to 50,000 words or from continuing let’s say from 20,000 words and adding 50,000 new words to finish a novel you’ve begun.  Not to mention, NaNo is a competition against yourself. Not others.

To put it simply, I have no qualms about breaking silly, little rules.

Anyhow, I’ve taken this week off from working on my WIP to rest my poor, little head.  (and fingers!) Then,  come Nov. 1st at the stroke of midnight- I’m off!

What are you all doing for NaNo?

Good luck to all!

Published in: on October 31, 2008 at 12:33 am  Comments (20)  
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