Monday, November 1, 2010

First Day Wrapup :: Scenes From a Space Helmet

Part One: A Robot Too Far is up on the site for you to read if you've a mind to.  Just click the title and you'll be whisked away by the internet djinn.

The first day of National Novel Writing Month has drawn to a close (at least for me) here on the west coast and my total stands somewhere north of 2,500 words.  Many of my friends rested their efforts around the 5,000 mark and I wish them well.  I'm a marathoner and I have a lot of long races under my belt and an innate fear of tripping myself up by outrunning my supply lines.

Mixed metaphor, party of one?

The folks at the Office of Letters & Light (our hosts) tell us that around 150,000 of us wrote about 55 million words today.  That's astounding. No wonder the site kept crashing today! 

The first complete section/chapter of the novel is posted and I'm happy with it overall.  You'll notice a distinct difference in the tone and delivery from past items I've shared, and that's on purpose.  I wanted to just sit down and talk through my computer, tell a story to an audience of friends... which is what we're all doing really, no matter what month it happens to be.

For me, NaNoWriMo is a time to experiment, to play with words and see what they're capable of.  To build giant robots and send them tromping across Missouri cornfields or send a young man hurtling back in time.

Because this is an homage to all the great science fiction I grew up on, the field is wide open and I intend to draw from the whole panoply of what came before.  In some ways I've thrown a pile of chits emblazoned with my favorite elements of science fiction into a hat and I'm pulling them out one by one and seeing if I can make them fun, funny or just silly enough to keeping you smiling while I reach into the hat to draw the next one.

The danger is that I'll end up with a meaningless jumble, or even worse, a horrible pastiche.  Of course, the danger of walking the edge is that you'll fall off.  The threat of failure is half the fun.

In the opening scene, an escaped android, an alien invader and a secret government agency were all introduced.  A famous author and a famous physicist were mentioned and a mad scientist or two hovered around the edge of things, waiting for their cues.  Tomorrow, we meet our hero and begin to get better acquainted with his world which is very similar to ours, and yet just different enough... well, you'll see.

Believe it or not, all of this makes sense and ties together before the end.  I promise.

In the meantime, enjoy the ride!



  1. Very nice, I'm looking forward to reading it! My wordcount is just shy of the 1800 I'd made my goal, but pretty close nonetheless.

    I like the idea of drawing mad science ideas from a hat!


Pages to Type is a blog about books, writing and literary culture (with the occasional digression into coffee and the care and feeding of giant robots).