Last weekend was long and exciting. One of those journey of discovery weekends where I hit upon life changing revelations such as: “I’m not able to stay up till 5am three nights in a row and drink two bottles of scotch each day.”
The weekend began on Wednesday night. I cleared the decks for four days of publisher duties surrounding a huge book launch gala on Friday night. (I really wanted to write “publishorial duties,” by the way, but I live in fear that nobody gets me and there’ll be a dozen comments from the horde of shut-ins who can’t stand my writing and yet refresh this page 700 times a day.)
As we built up to the launch, and the wave slowly rolled back over the weekend, I emerged a new man. A new man who is unable to stomach scotch. And the greatest self-discovery of all was that I can only write if I’m under intense pressure.
Deep into Thursday night, as the clocks ticked over into those early AM hours and the house rocked with yelling writers, drunken poets, and well-armed publishers shooting at imaginary nests of Brown Recluse spiders, we all realized that the first fuck up of the book launch was taking place.
The venue hosting the launch had been kind enough to give us a week of coverage on their blog, and we pulled together all the posts without much trouble. Friday, though, had been reserved for the book trailer. I think we were approaching 2am on Thursday when it dawned on me that the trailer wasn’t ready and we had to quickly throw together a Friday post.
My publishorial employers threw a pad of paper and a pen at me, then held a pistol to my head and started hissing terrifying threats in some sort of weird pigeon Spanish. What came out was a sort of stream-of-consciousness that had no business appearing on a grown up blog.
But I liked it, and I drunkenly drove home through alleyways and back yards as it dawned on me – I can only write under pressure. I need some sort of impossible, ridiculous goal. Like the 12,000 words a month project. I had thought a “gentleman’s competition” like Two Novels and a Baby was the logical next step, but it wasn’t. I needed to do something like Two Novels during a Sinus Infection.
As the weekend wore on, one of our VIP writer guests (authorial is a word!) suggested that I put together a book of vignettes, as I mentioned in yesterday’s post. And, appropriately enough, everything came to me while in the middle of devouring a plate of nachos. Short, ranty vignettes. How Greatsociety.org of me. Nachorial, even.
And with the protective mask of Greatsociety (where I really can publish anything without using a spell checker or, you know, my brains), I’ll create an insane and impossible to maintain deadline: Every Monday, I’ll write a week’s worth of articles. The length and topic won’t matter. I’ll just pound out whatever comes to mind and program it up.
That way, I can spend the rest of the week sitting in the dark and watching my neighbors without worrying about the hideous responsibilities of writing a novel.