Monday, October 29, 2012

Stranded At The Drive-In: Oh Sandy!

Ok so - I'm not, in fact, stranded at the drive-in,
but I've had that particular Grease song stuck in head since Friday afternoon.

I was at the laundromat this morning, watching the news report as I shovelled essential clothes into the washer, listening to the mayor explain that Sandy is coming right for us. I felt like I was in an opening scene of a disaster film. I was told by a friend, though, that it didn't work unless I muttered some snarky comment at the TV, ala Jeff Goldblum. Outside, up & down the block, the stores are all gated, most with signs that say "Closed for the  Storm." This, of course, reminded me of Scream when the town is under curfew.

Growing up in Virginia, hurricanes meant the whole family packed up and went to the hospital where my mom worked.  She was considered essential  staff and had to report immediately. We went along, equiped with multiple VHSes, because the facility was built stronger than our house. One year, there was a simple rain storm a couple weeks after the hurricane, so my brother packed his suitcase and was ready to flea to the hospital - he cried for hours when my mom told him we didn't go there everytime it rained.

I'm curious how many NaNoWriMo stories are now going to be influenced by the hurricane - whether it be the main conflict or something in the background that influences one single plot point.

Since most of us are forced to stay home today, stocked up on canned food, and hoping that the power doesn't go out, why not put the free time to use? Here are two ways to stay sane & make the most of this day:

(1) NaNoWriMo prep - You've heard of the infamous wiki-rabbit-hole, right? One November day, you break from writing for two seconds to look something up and next thing you know it's hours later and you're researching things that have nothing to do with your story. Why not get your research-guised procrastination out of the way today?

(2) Writer's Digest's #SSStory contest - I thought 50K words was going to be difficult - try 132 characters! I'm sure there have probably been similar contests before, but this one is geared specifically towards NaNoWriMo-ers. You have until 10/31 to submit your story.
Alright folks, have fun writing & prepping.
I hope you all stay safe!


  1. NaNo prep is such a good suggestion. I spent an hour (or more) just looking at male names today. SO GLAD I didn't waste valuable time doing that in November!

    1. Hope you found a name for your character! I started a story once with characters named Agatha and Bertha (long for character A and character B). Safe to say those were not their names in the final story!

      Good luck with NaNoWriMo!

  2. We're supposed to get the remnants as the system moves northwest into Ontario. Thus far, though the skies have looked threatening all day, it's been dry.

    It's not surprising that this would possibly have some inspiration for writers in future works. I remember two or three years back when that volcano in Iceland was messing up air travel, a British writer stranded in North America spoke with a Canadian newspaper about the ideas the situation was giving him personally.

    1. Hopefully you guys stay dry & super-speed gust free in Ontario!

      There aren't a lot of well-known volcano stories out there (aside from the surge of volcano-themed action movies in the 90s). Maybe hurrican inspiration will even lead to stories about other natural disasters.