October plans

Canadian dogwood, October 2006

Canadian dogwood, October 2006

October.  Change of season; change of gears.

I wrote sometime back about how, despite my intention that this would be primarily a writer’s blog, I’d also become an occcasional political blogger. By the time I wrote that post, I’d already written about the nomination of Wayne Anthony Ross to be Alaska attorney general (remember lima beans?), lots & lots about the battle for the Anchorage equal rights ordinance AO 64, a thing or two on the adventures in falsehoood-telling of “Dr.” Jerry Prevaricator, & several posts about about Sarah Palin’s 2 million dollar meme regarding ethics complaints (my most visited posts to date).  Since then, I wrote a lot more about AO 64, its passage by the Anchorage Assembly & veto by Mayor Sullivan, about the Miller v. Carpeneti lawsuit to interfere with the processes of judicial selection mandated by the Alaska Consitution (now being appealed to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals), then the True Diversity Dinner, & most recently the struggle of workers at the Hilton Anchorage for a fair contract.

Whew. That’s a lot of politics.

Change of season, change of gears. And that means, amongst other things, that the political stuff — well, it won’t be going away.  But it will be more occasional.

National Novel Writing Month

National Novel Writing Month

Right now there’s a bunch of us gearing up for the month-long writing frenzy known as National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). I first did NaNoWriMo in 2007 as a way to get my writing momentum back after the slowdown caused by — well, life.  Death. And so on.  So: did a NaNovel called Cold that, being something written in a headlong hurry, is far from finished as a publishable novel. But there was some good stuff, & I like the story.  Last year I started NaNoWriMo again but was forced to stop midway through by new life events.  But nothing’s stopping me this year.  And once November’s done, I plan to maintain momentum. Complete those projects, complete others.

So here’s my plan for October: in preparation for this year’s NaNovel, I’m gonna be doing a heavy load of reading on space exploration, terraforming, CELSS (Controlled or Closed Ecological Life Support Systems) blah blah — & blogging about it & other stuff having to do with the premises of what I’ll actually be writing in November.  Kinda like I did the other day, with my post Eating (& breathing & crapping) in outer space — hopefully entertaining, if not to everyone’s taste.  I’ll also be working offline to get my place sorted out, all nicely feng-shuied for writing & plain old living.  I originally vowed to get it done before the snow flies… whaddaya reckon? — but I’m gonna try.  I’ll also be trying to sort out this website a bit more to serve the purposes I have for it.  It might get messy here & there as I work on redesign.

And in November: write write write.

Disheveled writer at a write-in one night before the end of NaNoWriMo 2007

Mel the disheveled but victorious writer at a write-in one night before the end of NaNoWriMo 2007

With Phil Munger & Janson Jones outside an Assembly hearing this summer, the first time I met either in person.

With Phil Munger & Janson Jones outside an Assembly hearing this summer, the first time I met either in person.

When Phil Munger of Progressive Alaska made it to the Snow Goose last Friday at the tail end of the True Diversity Dinner, I told him that I’d been simultaneously sad & happy a month ago when he announced he was going to be blogging a lot less — sad because I think his has been an important voice in the progressive blogosphere in Alaska, but happy because he was going to get back to his music.  He needs music, & music needs him.  And that’s the way it is with me & writing, too.  Besides which, neither of us is exactly apolitical in how we approach our art.  — At any rate, I told him: but here we both are, still writing all kinds of political posts! & we laughed.

But I think he might be starting to keep his promise to devote more time to his musical composition. I sure hope so.  As for me: back into storymind.  It’s a very good place for me to be.

I’ll still be an occasional political blogger.  But writing my own stuff is where my spirit lives.

Oh yeah.  And that story I talked about in that science research geek post, the one called “Long Dark” I intended to finish & submit to Crossed Genres? Wasn’t far enough along with it to have any chance of finishing it by the deadline on September 30.  Bummer.

But I was able to take the first day’s writing from my 2007 NaNovel Cold, dust it off & revise it, & submit it as a short story instead.  And I’m very well-pleased with the result.  So are my friends I’ve shared it with who’ve come back with comments.  I hope the editors of Crossed Genres like it as much.  And if they don’t — well, heck.  Maybe I’ll post it here.

I feel like a writer again.

Write hard, die free

The “Write Hard Die Free” pin in the photo was designed by William Spear of Douglas, Alaska. That and other great pins are available at wmspear.com. Mine was given to me by my brother Mark & sister-in-law Linda as a gift some years back. I’m about to order another: somehow mine fell off my hat in the last few days.

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