Why I Didn't Write a Novel This Weekend (A Post for Pam)

Monday September 01, 2014

This time last year, I was sleep-deprived and beginning to panic. That's because I was in the final 12 hours of my first 3-Day Novel Contest. A few days ago I received a comment on my 2013 3-Day Novel Contest Wrap-Up from Pam Bustin, a Canadian writer who's been doing the contest since 2008 and was wondering if I was going to be doing it again in 2014.

To answer that, let's just say I happily slept in this morning.


Actually, let's say a little more than that.

It took me years to sign up for my first 3-Day Novel Contest because for me, the Labour Day Weekend is usually family time. Last year was an anomaly, but if I had signed up this year it would have been a two-day contest at best.

But I considered doing it anyway. What really stopped me was an ongoing writing problem I have, which I even mentioned in the CBC interview I did about the 2013 3-Day Novel Contest:

That is the hand of one of my favourite authors, Neil Gaiman. Written on his hand is very good advice. And although I know he leads us all true, I still can't get a handle on that middle bit.

Finish things.

The book I started writing at this time last year sits on my hard drive, barely touched in all those months. And it is not alone.

I'm at a point right now where charging headlong into a draft of something brand new has a definite appeal, but it is the appeal of sugar and shiny things. I have too many works-in-progress that aren't really in progress at all, because I'm puttering and poking at them, rather than digging in.

So best wishes to @PamBustin and everyone else who's in the final leg of the 2014 3-Day Novel Contest. If I can manage a few more "The Ends" in the next twelve months, perhaps I'll start something new with you this time next year.

But for now, GO GO GO!!! YOU GOT THIS!

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  1. Hey there, Marilyn - WOW - this is, far as I know, the first time any one has ever written a blog post just for me.


    And girl... do I feel ya.

    I so know what you mean about the Finishing things.
    I do... ok... I have finished things. Plays, my first novel, Mostly Happy, the odd essay.... things that are wandering out there in the world.

    BUT... I am super slow on the finishing front.

    Currently mid reVision on my second novel.
    it has been....
    a long

    So, yeah. I hear ya.

    Yesterday, I went looking for something... a note I had made for something that I thought might "help" with the thing I was building during the 3day.

    found the beginning of a story
    that looked
    oh so much SHINIER than the thing I'd been banging away at for two days.

    I stayed on the horse what brung me.

    I just hit PRINT on this years 3day sub.

    I ache in so many places
    but my soul is smiling
    and... after sleeping tomorrow and going to the post office to mail in my sub (Old School!)

    I will return to those reVisions
    on novel #2.

    write on, sister.

    Thanks for this.
    it really is an honour.
    and I love meeting folks out here in the blogosphere.

    On we go.

    go easy ~p

  2. Congratulations on completing your 3-Day Novel! It sounds as though it was a good choice to resist the other idea that reared up mid-weekend. :)

    And you're very welcome for the post - thank YOU for the comment that prompted me to write it. I should have done an update long before now, but I'm easily distracted. You know, shiny things and what-not.

    Happy writing!



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