Anyone seen a funky bird?

I’ve been thinking the last few days about whether I’m going to Nano or not this year.  For the uninitiated, Nano is short for NaNoWriMo, which is short for National Novel Writing Month, which is a very simple title for a very simple concept – write a 50,000 word during the 30 days of November. So simple a concept that thousands upon umpty thousands of writers begin, typing madly come November first. Much fewer finish. I’ve done it successfully twice, and then figured last year would be the charmed third time. Except last year, I cheated by trying to add to something I’d started previously . And since no one keeps score in NaNo, I ended up discovering what every cheater of every ilk discovers eventually-  I cheated myself and didn’t finish.

This year, my first instinct is “no no, no Nano”. I don’t have the time/drive/desire/creative inspiration necessary to commit to the madness. And the very next thought is “Why, why, why not try it again?”

That’s me – keep falling down, keep getting up.

So I’ve been mulling, imagining plots and characters and ideas. That’s allowed, you can think about it ahead of time all you want, you can even OUTLINE, you just can’t start writing the damn thing until after the kids have collapsed into a sugar coma on Halloween night. And what’s holding me up is the lack of a funky bird.

The Funky Bird is Lani’s terminology. It’s what you need to make a book stand out, give it its personality. In Lani’s case, in Maybe Baby, it was an actual funky bird. When it comes to actually selling your book, you’ll need to know where your Funky Bird is.

And no matter how many stories I dream up, I’m always left looking at an empty bird cage, no Funky Bird in sight.

But, as in all things, I’m beginning to realize that maybe I’m just trying too hard. Maybe the secret to success – and almost certainly the secret to my own past successs – is just to write the story I think needs to be written, or that I want to write, and if I leave the window open and some birdseed on the sill, the Funky Bird will show up sooner or later.

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One Response to “Anyone seen a funky bird?”

  1. Lani Says:

    Oh, honey. You never know what your funky bird is. You have to write the book, and AFTER the fact your friends read it and tell you. Trust me, it’s there, but we as writers never know what it is. Sorry if I didn’t make that clear! Good luck!

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