November. Eleventh month in our year of twelve months. Halloween is over. Christmas is on its way.

As well as being the eleventh month in our year, November is the month of NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, a month of insanity when a person tries to write a novel of 50,000 words in one month. Why the originator, Chris Baty, chose November, I’ll never understand. Why not January or February, months when not much is going on, months that mark new beginnings? New possibilities!

I participated in NaNoWriMo many years ago and found that a person could turn out lots of words if he set his mind to it and worked for a while every morning. I used the focused month to get an early draft of what later became my novel, AN ACCEPTABLE VENGEANCE.

I’m currently in what my writing friends and I term a “fallow” period, that time when you’ve finished one project and can’t quite work up the energy to start another. My latest novel, ONE SUMMER is up on several online book vendors including Amazon and Barnes & Noble. For the past couple of weeks, when I walk into my office for my morning stint at the computer, I’m missing the excitement that usually keeps me at work. Instead, I think “Okay, now what?”

The idea of a fallow period in ones life comes from a quote that I stumbled on years ago: “There is much to be gained in the fallow period between two enthusiasms.” I can’t remember the author of that thought, but his words have helped me through other “fallow” periods.

So, I’m sitting here this morning, coffee beside me, wall clock ticking off moments, debating whether to jump into doing NaNoWriMo again.

Or not.

Maybe I’ll tell you instead about our trip to New Mexico following the landscapes in Michael McGarrity’s Kevin Kerney police procedurals.

A completed draft of a novel in a month?

Maybe next year.


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