A new chapter

  • Aperture: f/3.2
  • Focal Length: 20mm
  • ISO: 400
  • Shutter: 1/14 sec
  • Camera: NIKON D80

Northport, Alabama

There’s nothing quite as fearsome as a girl who grabs fate by the jugular and wrestles it to the ground. A year ago, I cowered in a Baton Rouge hotel, knowing my dreams were about to kick my ass. It’s time to take back what belongs to me.

Seems to me that the place to do that is where I tasted failure. Last year, I began a novel for the annual NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month – 30 days to complete a 50,000 word novel. The purpose is to let go of fears and write with joyful abandon. To give yourself permission to make a huge, wild, over-the-top mess. It doesn’t have to be good (though some are) and it doesn’t have to get published (though some do.) The point lies in the doing. In throwing yourself out there. In showing up every day and saying “I’m going to do this because it’s what I want.”

Last year’s novel languished at 12,000 words by the end of November, only to painfully swell to 25,000 words and come to a grinding halt. The novel writing begins tomorrow and I aim to finish it. It’s a return to the beginning really. To all the misery and pleasure I’ve experienced since the first words I laid on the page.

Some say all books must contain a heroic quest. This is mine.

Music: NaNoWriMo Mix: 12 Bellevue – Kathleen Edwards; 29 Palms – Robert Plant; Afternoons and Coffee Spoons – Crash Test Dummies; All These Things That I’ve Done – Killers; Amsterdam – Guster; Amarillo by Morning – George Strait; Amtrak Shuffle – Dale Miller; Anything But Down – Sheryl Crow; Back to Me – Kathleen Edwards; Be Yourself – Audioslave; Before He Cheats – Carrie Underwood; Belong – REM; Birds Fly – Icicle Works; Bleed It Out – Linkin Park; Blues Before and After – Smithereens; Breakdown – Tantric; Breathe – Anna Nalick; Breathe Me – Sia; Bring Me to Life – Evanescence; California – Semisonic; Clocks – Coldplay; Color Me Once – Violent Femmes; Come Monday – Jimmy Buffett; Come Round Soon – Sara Bareilles; Country Boy Can Survive – Kid Rock; D’You Know What I Mean – Oasis; Dani California – Red Hot Chili Peppers; Deep – Nine Inch Nails; Der Kommissar – After the Fire; Disintegration – The Cure; Dixieland Delight – Alabama; Doesn’t Remind Me – Audioslave; Dolphin’s Cry – Live; Don’t Stop Believin’ – Journey; Down by the Water – PJ Harvey; Down to the Valley – Little Axe; Drink Me Away – Radish; Eurotrash Girl – Cracker; Everything is Broken – Ollabelle; Fake It – Seether; Falling Out of Love at This Volume – Bright Eyes; Footloose – Kenny Loggins; Forget Myself – Elbow; The Forgotten (Part 2) – Joe Satriani; Get Back Temptation – Ollabelle; Get the Party Started – Pink; Girl Like You – Smithereens; Girls Just Wanna Have Fun – Cyndi Lauper; Gold Lion – Yeah Yeah Yeahs; Hands Away – Interpol; Have It All – Jeremy Kay; Hazy Shade of Winter (Extended Mix) – Bangles; Head Like a Hole – Nine Inch Nails; Heart of Blues – Jude Cole; Heartbeats – Jose Gonzales; Here Without You – 3 Doors Down; High Cotton – Alabama; Highway to the Danger Zone – Kenny Loggins; House of the Rising Sun – Animals; Hypnotized – Ani DiFranco; I Don’t Wanna Be – Gavin DeGraw; I Don’t Want You on My Mind – Bill Withers; I Will Follow You Into the Dark – Death Cab for Cutie; In a Big Country – Big Country; In Pieces – Linkin Park; In the Air Tonight – Nonpoint; Invincible – Ok Go; January – Bonnie McKee; Kryptonite – 3 Doors Down; Lake of Fire (Live) – Nirvana; Leave – REM; Legend of a Cowgirl (Radio Edit) – Imani Coppola; Let’s Go Crazy – Prince; Like the Way I Do – Melissa Etheridge; Lonely by Your Side – Azzido da Bass; Los Angeles – Sugarcult; The Losing Kind – John Doe; Love Will Keep Us Alive – Eagles; Love Your Memory – Miranda Lambert; Lovergirl – Teena Marie; Mary Jane’s Last Dance – Tom Petty; Me in Honey – REM; Meant to Live – Switchfoot; Miss Independent – Kelly Clarkson; Morningside – Sara Bareilles; Mountain – Tonic; Mummer’s Dance – Loreena McKennitt; National Steel – Kathleen Edwards; Never Been to Spain – Three Dog Night; The New – Interpol; New Orleans is Sinking – The Tragically Hip; Oh Sheila – Ready for the World; Orange Crush – REM; Outsider (Apocalypse Remix) – A Perfect Circle; Poet Acts – Lyric Quartet; Precipitate – Interpol; Push It – Salt N Pepa; Put Your Lights On – Santana; Rain – The Cult; Rain on the Scarecrow – John Cougar Mellencamp; Red Hill Mining Town – U2; Rodeo – Garth Brooks; Talking in Your Sleep – The Romantics; Same Direction – Hoobastank; Sanity Assassin – Bauhaus; School’s Out for Summer – Alice Cooper; She’s in Parties – Bauhaus; Sick of Goodbyes – Sparklehorse; Son of a Preacherman – Etta James; Song of the South – Alabama; Soul Meets Body – Death Cab for Cutie; Southern Cross – Jimmy Buffett; Speed of the Sound of Loneliness – Amos Lee; Steady as She Goes – Raconteurs; Still – Matt Nathanson; Still in Love – The Stills; Stop Crying Your Heart Out – Oasis; Straight to Hell – Drivin’ N Cryin’; Sunday – Sia; Sundown (Demo) -Smithereens; Tainted Love (Extended Mix) – Soft Cell; Take It Easy (Love Nothing) – Bright Eyes; Take Me Home Country Roads – John Denver; Talk – Coldplay; Texarkana – REM; That Summer – Garth Brooks; Thick – Tonic; This is the World Calling – Boomtown Rats; Through Glass – Stone Sour; Trouble – Bonnie McKee; Tulsa Time – Don Williams; Turn It On, Turn It Up, Turn Me Loose – Dwight Yoakam; Unchained Melody – Eric Dodge; Under the Gun – Supreme Beings of Leisure; Unsuffer Me – Lucinda Williams; Untitled – Interpol; Walls (Circus) – Tom Petty; What I Am – Edie Brickell; What It’s Like – Everlast; What More Do You Want? – Plain White T’s; When I’m Gone – 3 Doors Down; Where Have All the Cowboys Gone? – Paula Cole; Whisper – Evanescence; Wishing Heart – Lisa Loeb; Wonderwall – Oasis; The Worm – Audioslave; You Got Me All Wrong – Dios Malos; You’ll Always Be – Oh Susanna; You’re the One – Dwight Yoakam.

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