NaNoWriMo Serial Novel | The Wolf and the Windlestraw | 6 Sept ’16

The Wolf and the Windlestraw is a novel written by 30 writers, including me! We collaborated under the guidance of one single, organized, and adventurous editor!  Click here to buy!

A year ago, I volunteered to help The Indianola Review launch its inaugural issue, serving as its charter Fiction Editor.  It was a lot of work, and fun too — we were always cooking up things to do to drive interest.  About this time a year ago we realized National Novel Writing Month 2015 was just around the corner…. had a crazy idea.

The magazine’s board decided to enlist the aid of 30 writers, having each volunteer to write one 2,000-word chapter, and then edit and publish the serial narrative! Basically, whomever went first got the story ball rolling, and each writer added something to it until its rollicking conclusion.

Cover Artwork by Francis Mann. Image (c) BorderLines

Major hats off to Hannah Basset, Associate Editor at IR, who undertook this challenge and managed the whole project through the Submittable portal, editing chapters on the fly, and then combing through for continuity issues. She writes a nice recap of her experience at her blog, here.

I don’t know that NaNoWriMo has ever seen a group-sourced novel go from inception to collaboration to publication, but it was fun to be part of this event, and I was glad to get one of the earlier chapters, Five, “Heartless Aunt Jane.” Here’s its opening paragraph:

Jane crawled on all fours looking for a long-lost Scrabble tile when she came to sense something else that nettled her. It was the golden hour, and the late afternoon light thrummed in through the dining room window and cast its odd shadows on the sideboard. Now that it was autumn, the leaves in the forest were quaking and dropping, leaving crevices of space for light to brighten her otherwise shadowy and undisturbed cottage in the woods. The patterns of the Oriental carpet beneath her swirled a moment, and the spirits within Jane purred, distant motors warming for a coming race. She absentmindedly picked up the found tile and placed it in her flat palm. It was the letter J.

Juno, she thought, and felt a pinprick of worry. She stood up, flipping the tile in the palm of her hand.

The completed novel is now available via Amazon, and I hope you have a chance to get a gander.  I’m not a YA writer by trade, but it was fun, and Hannah worked her magic on the whole kit and caboodle.

To all you writers contemplating NaNoWriMo — I salute you! It was not easy to crank out 2,000 words for my single day — I look upon writers who complete the NaNoWriMo challenge with awe and admiration.

Thanks for dropping by my blog.  Here’s a link to The Wolf and the Windlestraw, a serial novel, edited by Hannah Bassett.