It’s Official, I’ve Lost My Goddamn Mind…I’m Doing NaNoWriMo This Year…

And here's a picture of Wonder Woman telling you to follow me on twitter (@79semifinalist) because why not? What does Wonder Woman NOT make better?

…someone please stop me!

So, for those of you that don’t know, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, and it’s a yearly event in which many writers participate in order to crank out first drafts of a novel in (for me at least) what would be considered record time.  There’s all sorts of forums and helpful bits and bobs, and you can track your progress and if you complete (the guideline is 50,000 words by midnight on November 30th) then you can be eligible for awards and prizes and such.

I’m not really doing the whole shebang.  I don’t need the bits and bobs and forums, or to be eligible for prizes, I just want some really tight guideline to force me to crank out my next novel (and really, my second novel ever).  This is the worst possible time for me to be doing this as I’m working a lot of hours, have my time consuming She Has No Head! column, as well as this blog, and a handful of other projects up in the air including trying to start my own weekly podcast, but I’m doing it anyway.  The good news is that knowing I had to start today really helped me focus on finishing up some other stuff on my plate – most notably finishing my 400 page new edit of The Girl Who Would Be King…I have a couple tweaks left before I send it back to my agent, but it’s 99% complete.   I’m also very close on finishing a graphic novel project I’ve been working on with an awesome artist friend, and though none of my She Has No Head! posts are fully locked for the coming weeks, I’m more ahead than I usually am, which will hopefully help take some of the pressure off.

All this to say, I’ll still be blogging, I’ve pre-loaded some content, and will still be doing some of my regular features – Solicits In Three Sentences Or Less, Panel Of The Week, Cover Of The Week, etc. – but if you notice me around less or posting less or responding to comments less, its just because I’m banging my head against the brick wall that is “the new book”.  And for those of you who have read this far…it’s tentatively called Pariahs, and it’s a YA dystopian thriller starring a badass chick named Berkeley.  I’m really excited to get into it, but nervous as well, which is one of the reasons I decided to force myself into NaNoWriMo…it doesn’t leave much time to be worried about anything…

I will be doing daily page count updates, for those of you curious about my process and for those who want to watch me fail tremendously on meeting that 50k goal…which is, even if I work really hard, my honest prediction.

So in the meantime, if you’re not getting enough 1979 Semi-Finalist, may I direct you to the always excellent archives of popular posts such as 100 Favorite Comic CoversC0ver Solicits In Three Sentences Or Less, 25 Favorite Films of The Decade, and since it’s timely and relevant, MY casting of The Walking Dead from February 2010.  I stand by my choices…though I see that my acting payroll budget would have been considerably more than where the show ended up…which is fine…I mean, dream big, right?

There’s also a fun trip to be had by visiting my website – 1979 Semi-Finalist and checking out my long defunct Rabid Lamb Comics – a journal comic about boring little ol’ me.

And of course there’s always the She Has No Head! archive, where I’ve done nearly a year of posts on Comics Should Be Good about ‘women in comics’. I’m particularly proud of The Ladies Comics Project and you can read all three parts at the She Has No Head! link.

Anyway, enjoy and I’ll be more regularly back, hopefully with at least 50,000 new words, in 30 days, for now, I leave you with my pitiful stats for day one:

NaNoWriMo – DAY ONE:

0 words/0 pages

It was a world building/additional research/plotting day, which I knew I was going to need at least two or three more of before I could really get started.   I did write and do note taking on that front, but technically, I don’t think I can count any of those pages.  So off to a rough start we are!


  1. ross’s avatar

    i can’t believe you’re undertaking this when you still have like 34 emails to write to ME.



  2. Greg Burgas’s avatar

    I started a novel five years ago for this and couldn’t keep up the pace. Man, it’s hard. I got about 14,000 words before it all just caught up to me. I wrote it in blog form, too – it’s right here! You should do it on-line, too – that way we can read along with it and criticize it a LOT. It’s fun for everyone!

    Good luck, young lady!

  3. 1979semifinalist’s avatar

    @ross: emails sent. HA!

    @Greg: You should pick it up again! And I am totally going to go read yours – though probably not until December because, as said, swamped!

    Also, I can’t post mine online, because though I’m sure this draft will be crap, my intention is to eventually give it to my agent and you know…sell it. :) So I can’t burn my first rights by posting it on the web. I’m also REALLY paranoid about people taking my ideas/titles/etc…probably because even without sharing I’ve been burned a few times. It took all my willpower even to put my title in this post…but I convinced myself it was only one word, and not so original and so I could risk it. :)

  4. ross’s avatar

    haha! i’m sorry, i didn’t mean you had to send anything! XD

    i’m going to miss you on the podcast tonight. T_T i still haven’t watched episode 6 yet.

  5. 1979semifinalist’s avatar

    I’m TOTALLY going to miss the podcast. :( Even though I didn’t want to watch that episode, I totally feel like I’m missing out. boo!

  6. ross’s avatar

    it’s a pretty bad episode but we felt kind of at a loss for things to say, you always come to the podcast so prepared. we’re like “…yep, kinda sucked… um… sabretooth is funny…? ………………………”

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