Things are pretty dismal in the world of kludgey, predictable, cliched literature. I’m still stuck just under 10,000 words and have been stalled for about a week now. I can confirm that the key to the whole NaNoWriMo thing is momentum, since I haven’t been all that compelled to go back to the thing and pick up the slack. After more than a couple days of inactivity, the philosophy of “this isn’t great or even all that good, but at least I’m getting results,” turns to “if it’s turning out this boring and predictable, why even bother?” Apparently I was not born with ink in my veins — it was most likely Coke, or maybe gravy — and I lack the desire, no, need to create that fills the hearts of true artists such as Danielle Steele and that guy whose name I forget who writes all the mystery novels around horse racing.

I’m genuinely glad to see my writing buddies doing better than I am, though. Assuming that they’re not, well, lying, and that they haven’t just copied-and-pasted “banana” over and over again for tens of thousands of times. (Which now that I think about it, would probably be a better artistic achievement, in the James Joyce-ian sense, than what I’ve got so far). It’s nice to see real evidence that the whole contest works: after a month of concerted effort, you get to check something off your life’s list of things to do.

If it sounds like I’ve given up, I haven’t. I’m not going to admit defeat until midnight on November 30th. And 40,000 words in 15 days amounts to 2,667 words a day, which isn’t completely out of the realm of possibility.