Everyone wants to write a novel, right? A novel that sells so many copies that it leads to a comfortable career writing prose for living. To be the next Stephen King (Cha-Ching!) or J.K. Rowling (Cha-Ching!x 1,000).
I’m no different. But the wanting and the writing are two different things, aren’t they? That is, as some guy named Bill once said, the rub. Because writing a 60,000+-word piece of fiction is different than writing 600-, 1,000- or (rarely) 1,500+-word pieces of non-fiction for a newspaper or blog. It requires imagination, the ability to weave a tale and the stamina to get all those words out of your head and onto the page (or computer screen).
And even if the ideas flow into words on a page, there is no guarantee that the end product will be considered good. Who hasn’t read a lousy novel? Even some of the widely esteemed “classics” are average if you ask me.
Am I up to all that? I’ve been running hot-and-cold on my writing for at least a year now (some would say since the day I started at the newspaper). To say I’ve had some writer’s block is to say it rained a bit in the Pacific Northwest this past summer.
Whether I am up to the task or not, the fact is I’ve already begun to write my Not-So-Great American Novel (NSGAN). In fact, I’m
18,000 25,000 words in and the ideas are still coming out of my head, so that’s a good thing.
It’s a steampunk-paranormal-action-adventure tale set in 1880s Romania. No, don’t let the setting turn you off. There’s an American cavalry officer in the mix, and he’s smitten with an English lass, who unfortunately loves an English bloke who is trying to avenge the death of his own beloved at the hand of an evil prince who has his own plans.
There’s also a race going on. In fact, the whole idea started with the race, but those who’ve read my blogs and newspaper stuff shouldn’t find that unusual.
I’ve started a page here on the blog to track my progress on the NSGAN (calling it that because I don’t have a name for it yet) and I plan on occasional update posts, too. I may be looking for some test readers at some point, so if you’re interested let me know.
Am I the next Rowling or King? Of course not. But so far I’m having some fun with it, and I’m writing. That’s about all I was actually hoping for when I started.