Friday, January 11, 2013

how to write novels (part 1)

I'm not kidding.

It's that time of year again, the time when I conduct my Massive-Multi-Student-Online-Writers'-Conference (MMSOWC).

Trust me. It's worth every cent of what you pay, which reminds me (and those of you who've been around here for the last couple of years will be no strangers to THE SLOT):

Pay up, bitches.

The Slot also reminded me of this idea I had a few years ago to train and market a few dozen Suicide Prevention Pit Bulls.

Look, writing is tough. It is frequently disappointing and can plummet the unprepared practitioner into the depths of despair. You have to accept the following rule about writing:

RULE NUMBER ONE: If you are going to be a writer, you are going to think about killing yourself more frequently than, say, someone who earns a living making balloon sculptures at kids' birthday parties.

 Maybe not.

But here's how it works: As soon as the suicidal impulse takes hold (and this probably happens every 36 hours or so for most writers), you activate your Suicide Prevention Pit Bull, which immediately begins mauling your face and throat.

It's been my observation that whilst being mauled by an angry dog, there is nothing one desires more than to live, live, live!

Here's how the idea came to me: I am a runner. I run every day, no matter what the weather is like or how suicidal I am. In fact, there is a good bit of snow on the ground this morning from last night's snowfall and I'm even going to go run in that, just as soon as I fight off this intense urge to drink a tumbler of Clorox.

In any event, there was this crazy guy who lived on the lake up here, and one day when I was running (on the other side of the fucking street, by the way) past his house, he let his dog out. The dog came scampering after me and immediately began to bite me. In fact, it had its teeth clamped (this, I was told later, was a classic human defense wound) around my left wrist (I still have the scars).

Boy! Did I ever want to live at that exact moment!

Thank you, little red Sheltie-mix, for making me love life!

So here is what happened next: My right hand was wrapped around the dog's collar, which I twisted and twisted so the dog was choking--in a carotid clampdown.

The dog wanted to live.

I wanted to live.

There was such love of life taking place there on the street by the little lake, it was almost like a Tony Robbins seminar.

If you think I've strayed from my topic, which is How to Write a Novel, you are wrong.

This is just the warm-up, and besides, you get what you pay for (please see THE SLOT, above).

Besides, if you really want to be a writer, there are some things you need to do first, before I can teach you how to write a novel. If you plan on attending my MMSOWC, you'll need to consider obtaining some type of Suicide Prevention Pit Bull, and you'll need a costume for our dress-up day.

This year's theme is "Drowning Victims."

So, once you've got the dog and the Drowning Victim outfit, you will also need a crackerjack literary agent.

After you have those things lined up, have deposited sufficient funds into THE SLOT, and have come to terms with RULE NUMBER ONE (see above), then you are ready to participate in my How to Write a Novel course, which not only will be the subject of forthcoming blog posts, but is also guaranteed to make you want to live, live, live!