Me: Okay, guys, it’s November and we have a story to write. So far, we haven’t gotten anywhere, so we’re going to need to work —
Ricky: Are there any refreshments at this meeting?
Me: Uh, I don’t know.
Ricky: I’m famished. I kinda missed breakfast to be here.
Me: I – I don’t think… Wait a minute, this meeting is for main characters. You’re not even supposed to be here.
Ricky: I’m a recurring character, I gotta right to be here.
Me: There are supporting characters that have bigger roles than you and they’re not here. Never mind that, we have to get moving on this story. Anyone have any ideas?
Rory: I’m on strike.
Me: What? You can’t be on strike! There’s no Character Union here.
Rory: I know what you have planned for me and I don’t like it one bit. I’m not saying anything until you change it.
Me: I can’t change it, it has to be that way. Desdemona sit down! You cannot kill Sierra! Okay, back to the matter at hand. We have 50,000 words to get through and there’s only 1483 written —
Audra: Hey, we didn’t sign up for this. YOU did. It’s your problem.
Me: Well, that’s not really the way I see it. I let you guys do the first story in July, with the explicit understanding that we would work on the second story for November. So, I need everyone to work —
Berkeley: This is a load of crap. I’m out of here.
Me: No, Berkeley, you can’t leave —
Ellie: Why don’t we have everyone vote on what happens?
Me: Uh, okay… Except we need to have ideas that we can vote on.
Ricky: I vote we go get some food. Can’t believe this cheap-ass meeting doesn’t have any food.
Sierra: I vote we dump Miss Super Know-It-All Bi-otch. She thinks she’s better than everyone else.
Desdemona: I do not! I’m only better than the people I’m better than, like you – Miss Boyfriend Stealer! We were totally in love and you took Chase away from me!
Sierra: I did not steal your boyfriend!
Chase: Yeah, I never even really liked Des. She really is a bitch.
Desdemona: [gasps] Well, fine! I never wanted to be associated with you bunch of talentless… boring… Just try and fight the hell god without me!
Audra: Did you add egotistical, pompous and self-absorbed to her description?
Me: Ladies… No… Des, come back! Don’t fight. We have to work together! Chase, Sierra, Mestipen – do you guys have anything? You owe me. You added to the main character count and now I need to know what to do with you.
Chase: [cackles] You are running out of time! Everyone has left the scene of the crime! [claps hands]
Me: What? No, guys! Come back!
Lennon: It’s almost time for Drop Dead Diva.
Me: You watch that? Isn’t that, like, a girl’s show?
Lennon: Don’t judge. I’ll have you know it’s very entertaining.
Ricky: Yeah, let’s get something to eat. There’s a waffle place around the corner.
All: Yeah, good idea. Let’s go! Sounds good to me.
Me: But guys! NaNoWriMo! Fifty thousand words! November! Only 23 days left… Guys? Guys? [cricket… cricket…]
This was a piece I wrote in the middle of NaNoWriMo last year, when I was experiencing terrific writer’s block. The characters that had been clamouring in my head since July, so much that they made me start the story in advance of November, were all of a sudden strangely silent. I had fleshed out the first book and now I had to move onto the second in order to participate in NaNoWriMo. But I wasn’t ready yet and had no where to go. And the characters weren’t helping.
So it’s Day 15 and I’m just a little bit panicked. I’m experiencing deja vu all over again. Except now it’s only 15 days left. The month is turning out to be far busier for me than anticipated and I’m having a hard time concentrating on this story. Translation: I’m going no where fast. I’ve been stuck at 5120 words since about Day 3. Who the hell thought free falling off a cliff into the unknown would be fun? I hate heights! And that feeling you get in the pit of your stomach when you fall from somewhere.
Of course, the absolute idiot that I am, what do I go and do again for this year’s NaNoWriMo? I choose to continue with this series, having no idea where it should go. And the characters aren’t talking. Again. I’m trying, to get them to, but they are eerily silent. Hello? Anybody there? See. Silent. I don’t know where they’ve gone, but I want them to know I love them very much and they need to come home. I hate to sound desperate and clingy, but desperate times call for desperate measures.
In their heydays, they scream and yell and fight. They push their way onto the stage. They jostle for attention and everybody talks at once. What I wouldn’t give for the good old days. But now, there’s nothing. Not a peep. I’m wondering if they’re on vacation. Because if so, I never authorized any time off, especially in the middle of NaNoWriMo!
Ugh. Only 44,880 more words to go and no characters to tell their stories in sight. So if you happen to see my characters anywhere, please tell them I need them. And I have snacks.