Tag Archives: novel

Nanowrimo 2014

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How cool is this! Not only is November a month devoted to giving thanks, eating until you feel like you might throw up (and then you do), putting on boxing gloves and throwing down over the last Barbie or Wal-mart towels, or yelling unabashedly in support of people being knocked unconscious on a field – it’s National Novel Writing Month!

Basically, National Novel Writing Month, or Nanowrimo, is getting hopped up on caffeine and writing with a group, friend or alone in your favorite spot at home until you reach the goal of 50,000 words. This year I participated because it was one of my 2014 new year’s resolutions, which I made on the fly in the spirit of making goals I did not intend on reaching, high on the newness of the year and the idea of endless possibilities – but I digress. When my husband reminded me of my promise, I became angry at myself for making such an insurmountable goal and at him for reminding me that I had done so and being so supportive. The anger was not actually anger at all but fear, fear that I would fail. So, after a few tears and screams in my pillow, I decided to give it a try – no I was in it to win it.

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I wrote like a mad woman for days, setting my timer for an hour and resting for thirty minutes and sometimes doing sprints for as long as I could write. I attended two write-ins in my state. One of them was great with nice lighting and the perfect ambience for inspiration. The other was awful. People kept talking loudly, addressing the entire group instead of using a normal café voice. The owner allowed us to use the facility during after-hours so we could write in a quiet place but I guess everyone did not get the imaginary memo. My husband and I drove an hour to get there. Before long I got up to leave, disappointed that I had not gotten much done at all. But there was a silver lining. I had written for a couple of hours earlier, my husband and I had rousing conversation to and from the venue and I had learned to never attend another write-in with that group again unless I was way ahead of the game, which they probably were.

Overall, my experience was great because guess what?! I won! I reached 50,000 words on November 28. I could not believe I had actually done it with all the other responsibilities I had that month, but the numbers don’t lie. Big thanks to my husband for dictating every word I wrote to make sure I stayed on track, his supportive words and help around the house, and encouraging text messages from my dear, dear friends and family. You guys will never know how much you mean to me.

So I am writing this blog to let you know whatever it is you want to do but think it is just too crazy for you to achieve, do it. Cry it out, make excuses and when you are done – do it. Depend on your friends and family to give you the support you need. Give them the chance to let you know how much they care about you and your goals. Do it! Do it! Do it!Winner-2014-Facebook-Profile

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“The Sense of an Ending” by Julian Barnes -Book Review

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Confident, promising and self-absorbed Tony Webster and his friends meet Adrian Finn at school. While the boys marvel at Adrian’s superior worldview and intelligence, they become very close friends and vow to keep the close bond throughout their lives.

Tony, now entering his sixties, re-examines the life he had not expected. He discovers sometimes memories can’t be reliable. When a letter from a lawyer arrives one day, out of the blue, he soon realizes just how unreliable his recollection really is.

This book (winner of  the 2011 Man Booker Prize) verifies that it doesn’t necessarily take 1000 pages to tell a great story. My paperback edition was about 150 pages! I read it rather quickly and was thoroughly satisfied.

The story (narrated by Tony) alternates between the 1960’s to present day London. Tony compares the different mores and nuances of the time periods. I thought this was very interesting. For example, there was so much freedom in traveling without cellphones and email — only postcards or, for emergencies, telegrams. No one expected you to check in daily or updated you with the current happenings where you were headed so wonder and exploration was prevalent.

He also expresses how simple recall can lack credence. We tend to remember events favorably when reality tells a different tale. While reading, I got the feeling that I had overlooked some integral parts  or perhaps the story was an unsolvable puzzle; but by the end , all the scattered pieces came together leaving my mouth gaped.

I really enjoyed this book, I gave it 5 stars!

You should read this book if you enjoy:

  • short stories
  • mystery books
  • accessible philosophy

Other books by this author: “Metroland” (1980) “Before She Met Me” (1982)” Flaubert’s Parrot” (1984) -shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize “Staring at the Sun” (1986) “A History of the World in 10½ Chapters” (1989) “Taking It Over “(1991)”The Porcupine” (1992)”England, England” (1998) -shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize “Love, etc” -sequel to “Taking it Over” “Arthur & George” (2005) -shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize