Ruminations on the Digital Realm

Jan Stedehouder

Writing a book in one month?

About a week from now I will start  a new series of articles “DesktopBSD: the first 30 days”. This coincides with the annual National Novel Writing month. It’s the insane challenge to write a complete book of 50.000 words (or 175 pages) in one month.

What: Writing one 50,000-word novel from scratch in a month’s time.

Who: You! We can’t do this unless we have some other people trying it as well. Let’s write laughably awful yet lengthy prose together.

Why: The reasons are endless! To actively participate in one of our era’s most enchanting art forms! To write without having to obsess over quality. To be able to make obscure references to passages from our novels at parties. To be able to mock real novelists who dawdle on and on, taking far longer than 30 days to produce their work.

When: Sign-ups begin October 1, 2007. Writing begins November 1. To be added to the official list of winners, you must reach the 50,000-word mark by November 30 at midnight. Once your novel has been verified by our web-based team of robotic word counters, the partying begins.

Now, writing about DesktopBSD isn’t going to be fictional and I seriously doubt it will ever be considered “novell” enough to win the Booker prize, but I don’t mind giving the 175 page goal a shot. Or at least finish the month with a lot of pieces to work on a book for new users to *BSD.


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