i am writing a draft of a novel!
i had an incredible experience with napowrimo, national poetry writing month. i spent april writing a poem each day and remembering how much i love poetry, that i am a poet in my own way, even if it isn’t my primary form.
i have been reading a lot lately. i was recently inspired by kiese laymon’s long division, and then margaret atwood’s maddaddam trilogy. both were wonderfully creative and funny stories, the first one on time travel, the second on apocalypse and corporate control.
i was looking around for my next book, which i am pretty sure will be chimimanda ngozi adichie’s americanah, when i was reminded that november is national novel writing month (nanowrimo).
my style isn’t really funny, but it absolutely concerns time travel and apocalypse – in detroit. this is a story i have been trying to get out for a while, and everything i’ve written is too small to tell the story. the goal of nanowrimo is 50,000 words. i hope that’s enough, but i figure that by the end of the month i will know a few things:
– how i feel about novel writing
– how big my love story of detroit needs to be
– what’s possible inside my writing practice with a rigorous daily word count goal
the other thing to share about this story is that it’s all about grief, of course. part of why this story has been hard to land is that grief keeps knocking me sideways. today i pulled together the writing i have done about grief on this blog and it was so much. it was beautiful to see how time has made each loss more bearable, more complete. and it was humbling to see the ways in which my real life grief is being transformed into a generative force in the story i now write.
this novel may be like my songs and most of my poems, for my own release and healing. but i am excited to let it out, to give these ghosts a place to play together.
send me love, and luck. and if there are people you have lost that you would like me to include in some way, especially connected to detroit, please share their names and stories here. i’ll see what i can do.