Lessons from NaNoWriMo

This November, I did something a little crazy.

After a few years of placating my gently stirring curiosity with soothing murmurs of ‘that sounds interesting but I’ll try it when I have something to write about’ and ‘I’m so busy – I’ll do it when I have time to commit properly’, I buckled to internal pressure and signed myself up to NaNoWriMo.

What’s that, I hear you ask? NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. On 1st November every year, thousands of people put pen to paper (or fingers to keys) with the goal of writing 50,000 words of an original novel by 11.59pm on  30th November. That breaks down to 1667 words per day, every day for a month.

Is it a slightly bonkers endeavour? Yes. Clearly.

Was it worth it? Yes. Unequivocally.

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Review: Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed

Tiny Beautiful Things

When it comes to literature, I am a compulsive consumer.

Whenever I finish a novel/play/poetry collection, I allow myself a moment to savour the final sentence, with a strange sigh of relief and inspiration and sorrow and optimism. Then I think, ‘Right. What’s next?’

This morning, just as I reached my tube stop, I finished reading Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar. After the familiar sigh had shivered through me, something unusual happened. Instead of mentally scanning my shelves for my next literary adventure, I wanted to flick back to the beginning and start again, devouring the words with a new understanding. I wanted to grab the person behind me on the escalator and implore them to read it. I wanted to buy 50 copies of it and send one to everyone I know.

My finances not permitting that final impulse, I settled for a more sensible option. Blog post.

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Recap: Girls, Season 4, Episode 2

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So. Iowa.

Deep breaths everyone.

We open with Hannah being shown round her new apartment. It is $250 a month. “But there’s lots of light”, the realtor says, reassuringly, as if Hannah isn’t already on the verge of a nervous breakdown as she tries to calculate how many of her NYC apartments could fit inside the kitchen. ‘I’ll take it!’, she screams, because, of course.

The first thing Hannah does in her new apartment is Skype Marnie, who refuses to talk about Adam at all, even though Hannah is ’totally over it’.*  Luckily for Hannah, the connection freezes before Marnie can chat any more shit about how her seedy affair with Desi is actually the greatest musical love match since Beyoncé and Jay Z, and people who think otherwise are just ‘threatened’.

*Are we to assume, then, that H+A ≠ <3? If so, Dunham & co. have denied us a break up chat and I’m not happy about it.

Skype sesh aborted, Hannah turns her attention outwards and heads off to meet the people of Iowa.

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