Wednesday, November 04, 2009

The View From the Phlipside - NaNoWriMo

These are the scripts from my weekly media commentary program on WRFA-LP Jamestown

My name is Jay Phillippi and I've spent my life in and around the media. TV, Radio, the movies and more. I love 'em and I hate em' and I always have an opinion. Call this the view from the Phlipside

(Sunday) I began an interesting experiment that actually involves me working in media. I'm interested to see how it all turns out. It's not a short experiment first of all. It's called NaNoWriMo, the National Novel Writing Month. The goal is to write fifty thousand words of a novel in one month's time. And that's what I'm going to try and do.

First some background on NaNoWriMo. They describe themselves as a "seat of the pants approach to novel writing" that "valu(es) enthusiasm and perseverance over painstaking craft", "quantity over quality" through a "...kamikaze approach (that) forces you to lower your expectations, take risks, and write on the fly". For someone who is prone to complain about low quality in the media this may sound like some kind of brain fade. In fact I think it's a great idea. If you've ever thought about writing but it seemed too intimidating then this is the contest for you. All you have to do is write. And keep on writing. Don't edit, don't worry about lapses of logic or plot holes. That's why God made 11 other months of the year. For one month you just...write. About 1,600 words a day will keep you on track.

I've played around with writing since I was in high school. Some poetry, a fair number of short stories. There have been ideas for books racing around my brain for years just like lots of other people. A couple years ago my much more prolific writing daughter discovered NaNoWriMo and took a shot. Last year she tried again and completed the task. And she has badgered and bullied me into trying it this year. (She must get that from her mother. Mine is a gentle soul) So I've signed up at the official site ( and on Sunday I sat down to begin the task.

In the end what I'm really hoping for is just to jump start my writing process again. If I get a novel out of it great. If there's anyone out there who has also decided to give it a try please feel free to get in touch with me through WRFA. I'd love to get together and encourage others along the way of creating. What do any of us have to lose? An hour or two of NCIS re-runs on USA Network?

I'll let you know how it goes.

Call that the view from the Phlipside

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