No Graceful Exit
By ana (Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 09:27:54 AM EST) nano, nanowrimo, writing, graceful exit (all tags)
Which means, either ungraceful exit (think helicopters off the embassy roof), or no exit at all, and Iraq becomes State 51.

Of course, the same source argued that the choices were "stay the course" or "cut and run", and they're no longer "staying the course". Perhaps "cut and run" is the same thing as "ungraceful exit".

And speaking of ungraceful exits, I finished my NaNoWriMo novel.

50,000 words in a month is rather a long haul. And for what? Something that's a bit too small to be a novel by contemporary standards, and way too long to be a short story. A novella, perhaps.

This time I started out with a few goals other than just writing 50,000 words with a story hidden in there someplace.

• One main character
• An evil one at that, though at least sometimes sympathetic
• Internal conflict
• Survival (for the author)
I guess I kinda made all that happen. The villain in last year's story was a cardboard cutout, without much in the way of motivation, with a background that made no sense. So I decided to try to tell his story, looking over his shoulder for excerpts from his life.

Frequent ana-readers will be amazed that [a] he's male, and [b] he's straight. But hey. Maybe I've learned something about Life, the Universe, and Everything, and the coffee mug my partner bought me may no longer be entirely true. (Mine is conspicuously missing the rainbow colored flowers.)

Pacing was a bit awkward at times. I don't think I reserved quite enough month or chapter space to contain the important bits of the action from last year; so maybe it needs to be read with that one (after changing things so that they actually mesh). Perhaps, one day, looooong after November is past, I can make one sustained narrative out of both of these, plus a lot of other stuff I wrote long ago.

One interesting thing about a retired activist of the quasi-legal variety is that he has lots and lots of aliases. I saved up my spam most of the month and harvested the "from" lines for likely looking names. And then discovered, just this week, that one character in common to the two novels in fact had 3 different names in last year's. :-/

Anyway. It's done. That's all I care about for today.

No Graceful Exit | 28 comments (28 topical, 0 hidden)
That mug by ad hoc (4.00 / 1) #1 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 09:40:34 AM EST
looks an awful lot like a hat.
--
Hypocrisy is the resin that holds the plywood of society together
uh... by ana (2.00 / 0) #2 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 09:49:38 AM EST
i can see both objects on that page.

Regular, or decaf abomination? --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
Oh sure by ad hoc (4.00 / 2) #3 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 10:10:10 AM EST
itty bitty screen by ana (2.00 / 0) #4 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 10:13:06 AM EST
then, eh?

Regular, or decaf abomination? --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
It's not the size of the equipment... by ad hoc (4.00 / 2) #5 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 10:16:10 AM EST
he's straight? by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #6 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 11:39:38 AM EST
I thought he was just confused. Um, seriously, you're not short of material for a "full-length" novel, considering that the end of November and the 50K mark snuck up on you two times in a row, with more left to be said, gaps to be filled in, fleshed out, and so on. It's a matter of sifting through the raw datadrafts and finding the building blocks to make a narrative out of. Not unlike what your characters are trying to do. Like I said, I think what one of the cool things about NaNo is that it gives you a sense of the size of the story. Turns out that what you're working on is actually bigger than a NaNo, but I think, nevertheless, the last couple years have given you a sense of the shape of it, instead of this amorphous saga stretching on indefinitely.

That name trick is cool, and I think I stole it once or twice, although often I'd either forget or nothing seemed to fit. I find it bugs me for some reason if a character's name doesn't have the right number of syllables (whatever "right" is). I didn't actually need that many names this time, and as it turned out I could probably have called a few individuals "that guy" or something, for all the significance their names ended up having.

Hmmm, all this is reminding me, I had some other thoughts, but I'll expand on them elsewhere.

--
"If we build it, will they come, and what will they do when they get here?" -- iGrrrl

Confused is a good word. by ana (2.00 / 0) #7 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 12:11:07 PM EST
It's not clear he's ever paid any attention to anybody male, though. Unless they have guns.

And you're right, that I now have a better sense of the scope of the tale I've bitten off (to chew on a couple metaphors). So perhaps that, plus telling the one other story line you (and others) have requested, and some mixmastering, will get me someplace interesting.

And, dammit, making up something for Them to be talking about. Which I've shied away from in two Novembers so far (at least).

I sifted through hundreds of spam messages to pull out the dozen or two names I used, so the yield is fairly small. I remember once deleting lots of useless dreck, but keeping one whose "from" name I liked. A couple days later I went spelunking in that cave again, and found, ooOOoo, and e-mail from one of my characters! Oh, wait.

I do love your comments and thoughts, and shall look forward to the others.

Regular, or decaf abomination? --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
email from a character by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #8 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 12:48:17 PM EST
Well, that would spook me right the heck out. Can't imagine what they would have to say to me. Maybe "Hey, cut that out, life is complicated enough already"?

Yeah, I get a lot of spam that won't work for names at all. Though I just had a look and there are some good ones just in the past weekorso. "Geneva Caudill" wrote with the subject line "hi it's Caudill." Oh Em Gee Caudill!! I haven't heard from him/her/it (them?) in so long!

Hmmm, re: Them, I just had another thought that may or may not make your life more difficult.

--
"If we build it, will they come, and what will they do when they get here?" -- iGrrrl

[ Parent ]
re: ideas by ana (2.00 / 0) #10 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 12:55:55 PM EST
we should have lunch or a party or something soon.

Regular, or decaf abomination? --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
We really should. by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #11 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 01:06:08 PM EST
I think this may call for some email planning.

--
"If we build it, will they come, and what will they do when they get here?" -- iGrrrl
[ Parent ]
I got a virus email from Irwin Goldberg in 2000 by johnny (2.00 / 0) #15 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 03:06:50 PM EST
It was a varient of the "sircam" bug.

Irwin Goldberg was the virologist professor, mentor to Bartlett Aubrey, in Acts of the Apostles.

This was during my early days of "fame" on K5 and Slashdot.  Gee, do you think there was a connection?

She has effectively checked out. She's an un-person of her own making. So it falls to me.--ad hoc (in the hole)

[ Parent ]
connection? by iGrrrl (2.00 / 0) #20 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 04:57:46 PM EST
Oh, I doubt it.  BTW, I just did a project with him.  He is a heard of cats.  Smart ones, but unruly.

"Beautiful wine, talking of scattered everythings"
(and thanks to Scrymarch)

[ Parent ]
We shall have to talk by johnny (2.00 / 0) #24 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 06:20:31 PM EST
Where "we" is you and Dear Wife.

She has effectively checked out. She's an un-person of her own making. So it falls to me.--ad hoc (in the hole)
[ Parent ]
that does it by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #22 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 05:00:32 PM EST
I'm definitely not opening email from any of my characters.

That K5 link (or rather the comments attached thereto) is an excellent example of people taking something way too seriously.

--
"If we build it, will they come, and what will they do when they get here?" -- iGrrrl

[ Parent ]
I kind of assumed that by johnny (2.00 / 0) #25 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 06:22:45 PM EST
code 10 or, whatever his name was, was the guy who sent it & that he was pissed off he didn't get me.

Or if it wasn't him, it was somebody like him.

She has effectively checked out. She's an un-person of her own making. So it falls to me.--ad hoc (in the hole)

[ Parent ]
Baghdad is the new Saigon? by debacle (2.00 / 0) #9 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 12:54:30 PM EST
I don't know.

You really think it's going to come to that?

IF YOU HAVE TWO FIRLES THOROWNF MONEY ART SUOCIDE GIRLS STRIPPER HPW CAN YPUS :OSE?!?!?!?(elcevisides).

if they're lucky by martingale (2.00 / 0) #12 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 01:28:53 PM EST
Just as Vietnam was better off under the Communists than under the Americans, Iraq will be better off if they're lucky enough to get some Islamists to take over.
--
$E(X_t|F_s) = X_s,\quad t > s$
[ Parent ]
Yes but it would suck for the image of the US by debacle (2.00 / 0) #13 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 02:08:00 PM EST
What little there is left of it.

That, and there will be a great deal more bloodshed. I mean how many months off is that end in sight?

IF YOU HAVE TWO FIRLES THOROWNF MONEY ART SUOCIDE GIRLS STRIPPER HPW CAN YPUS :OSE?!?!?!?(elcevisides).

[ Parent ]
months? by martingale (2.00 / 0) #14 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 02:33:30 PM EST
I think years is more appropriate. The US won't leave until the next presidential election (it took Nixon to leave Vietnam, after all). Those extra two years will greatly entrench the civil warriors in Iraq for years, unless a really talented killer emerges over there.

However, at least with the new Congress, I think it'll be harder for the president to throw good money after bad, which is good for everybody.
--
$E(X_t|F_s) = X_s,\quad t > s$

[ Parent ]
I wasn't alive during Vietnam by debacle (2.00 / 0) #16 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 03:21:52 PM EST
But from what I've read, the violence in Iraq has escalated disproportionately to the time spent there. Things could be worse than Vietnam was in '74 in a span of less than a year.

IF YOU HAVE TWO FIRLES THOROWNF MONEY ART SUOCIDE GIRLS STRIPPER HPW CAN YPUS :OSE?!?!?!?(elcevisides).

[ Parent ]
you think by martingale (2.00 / 0) #17 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 04:03:21 PM EST
that US troops are going to leave before Bush is finished with his presidency? I doubt it.

How many Americans have died so far? Peanuts, compared with any real war. Iraq only has an impact in America because of the media, but it's not actually personally meaningful to the vast majority of Americans, like say the bombing of London was meaningful to the Brits in WWII.

Now that the democrats have got back in power, there's actually a disincentive to strongly promote Iraq in the media spotlight. I predict a gradual decline in media interest around middle of next year. Without strong media criticism, America can easily afford to stay in Iraq for the next ten years.

--
$E(X_t|F_s) = X_s,\quad t > s$

[ Parent ]
But does it want to? by debacle (2.00 / 0) #18 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 04:14:42 PM EST
We're only meeting military recruitment quotas because we're recruiting people who have nothing to lose not only from our own country but from others as well, not to mention the huge draw on our resources.

I don't think we could last another ten years in Iraq without a draft.

IF YOU HAVE TWO FIRLES THOROWNF MONEY ART SUOCIDE GIRLS STRIPPER HPW CAN YPUS :OSE?!?!?!?(elcevisides).

[ Parent ]
depends on the goals by martingale (2.00 / 0) #19 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 04:40:17 PM EST
What I mean is that America can easily stay ten years, if its goal is to keep some military bases in Iraq and an excuse for keeping deployments within neighbouring countries. You don't need that many troops just to protect some bases, certainly not the draft. And Iraqis tend to fight each other now anyway, they won't be launching major offensives unless provoked.
--
$E(X_t|F_s) = X_s,\quad t > s$
[ Parent ]
Yay for you. by iGrrrl (2.00 / 0) #21 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 04:58:28 PM EST
Lunch?  I'm still grumpy and anti-social, but I shouldn't punish myself for it.

"Beautiful wine, talking of scattered everythings"
(and thanks to Scrymarch)

Love to. by ana (2.00 / 0) #23 Thu Nov 30, 2006 at 05:02:18 PM EST
We're also trying to organize something with the various nanoers, but that's probably not going to be lunch on a weekday.

Regular, or decaf abomination? --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
Streetlawyer... by ana (2.00 / 0) #28 Sun Dec 03, 2006 at 01:45:10 PM EST
check yuor e-male

Regular, or decaf abomination? --Kellnerin

[ Parent ]
Done and by blixco (4.00 / 1) #26 Fri Dec 01, 2006 at 04:48:06 AM EST