War of Words

NaNoWriMoIt’s November and after we’ve dried our tears because we won’t see Halloween for another year, it’s time to once again, take part in NaNoWriMo. Last year we wrote Field of Screams, which was based on our short story of the same title, which won Writing Magazine’s ghost story competition in 2010. Yes, we’re still living on that past glory. It was a comedy, so it was easy to write. This year, we’re doing something completely different. It’s called Bleeding Empire and is a horror/urban fantasy based on the 4 horsemen coming to earth and wreaking havoc. Except in our case, there are 5 of them and 2 are women. If you left it up to men to destroy the world, they’d screw it up. Or forget something 😀

Last year we didn’t have any real plans, but we were excited to see if we could do the challenge. We were pretty confident we could, because we usually write a novel in 6 weeks. Our challenge though, was to hit the 50k in 17 days, because we were going on that ill-fated trip to North Wales on the 18th for our ghost tour. We filmed that disastrous trip and you can see it here – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t2mJK8JWw0g Watch out for the bit where Travelodge hides from us in its own car park. Our cheeks still glow with shame every time we think about it.

Anyhoo, by the end of the 30 days, we’d hit 80, 300 words. This year, we want to beat that. Except we have no plans and are writing each chapter completely blind. It’s not easy like Field of Screams was. And we almost feel forced into it. By our own choosing, of course. If it wasn’t for NaNo, we’d have no intention of writing a novel, even though it’s been a year since we wrote one. We were redrafting Scott the Zombie and finished five days before November, then we were distracted with Halloween. So NaNo was bearing down on us like a demented snowball.

We’re not going to fight the snowball, we’re going to let it sweep us up in its icy embrace and drag us all the way to the finish. We’ve managed to write 15K already, which isn’t bad considering the night before NaNo started, we were still trying to figure out Death’s character. Should he be male? Female? Male and female twins? So you can see how prepared we were for this. In fact, the only preparation we did, was to choose the font for the chapter headings & future front cover. We hadn’t even picked the font we were going to type in. Fun fact – each novel gets assigned its own font, which is matched to the novel and the first draft and any future ones are printed out in that font. We’ve always done it this way and always will.

Writing a novel with absolutely no plans may cause panic for a lot of writers. We love the freedom it gives us and it’s worked for us so far. So we’re going to hand the reins over to War, Famine, Pestilence and Death and let them steer this carriage of creativity to the end. We just hope one of them knows where they’re going.

Our friend Kris, has challenged us to recite this dedication on our blog. We will confess, we haven’t memorised it, we copied and pasted it 🙂

O Goddesses of Olympus, Musai

O Apollon, father of the lyre

This work I do in your name

This work I do for your glory

Shine your inspiration upon me

That my efforts might honor you better

O Hermes, the silver-quick and clever

O Mercury, messenger and guide

This work I do by your discretion

This work I do by your tools

Stand beside me always

That my words might be bright and clear

O Dionysus, cause and surcease of madness

O Zagreus, embodiment of ecstasy

This work I do as your servant

This work I do as your messenger

Be within me as I write

That I might be without myself and range more widely

Hai Musai!

Io Memnosune, Titan Muse and memory incarnate!

Io Caliope, mistress of the epic!

Io Clio, keeper of history!

Io Erato, voice of lust!

Io Euterpe, mistress of song!

Io Terpischore, inspiration of dance!

Io Melpomene, bringer of tears!

Io Thalia, who causes laughter!

Io Polymnia, source of all hymns!

Io Urania, who keeps the secrets of the stars!

Io Apollon!

Io Phoibos, lord of the sun!

You who slew the serpent Pytho

and who inspire the prophesies of Delos!

Bright son of Metis and mighty Zeus!

You in whose name I issue prophesy!

Bringer and healer of plague!

Io Hermes!

Io Dolios, divine trickster who, new-born, fooled Apollo and Zeus alike!

Slayer of watchful Argos

Great messenger of the gods!

You Of the Gateway,

Guide of both the living and the dead!

Io Ram-bearer! Io Champion!

Io Dionysos!

Io Bacchos! Yourself, your Mask, and your worshiper: one!

Bringer of madness and ecstasy!

Lord of the vine and instructor in fermentation!

Twice-born, Twice-died, Thrice-lived!

You of the Mysteries!

In whose name I pour all libations!