Didn’t finish NaNoWriMo this year. Didn’t even come close. Big surprise, eh? Put another shrimp on the barbie of started-but-never-finished projects.
I thought I had it figured out this year, too. Stream-of-consciousness, typed as fast as I can think it, caught on wax at the same speed it comes to me, edit later. Gonzofiction.
Only trouble with that method is you actually have to sit at the computer and type it. November just turned out to be too busy, I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I could sit and write. Last year I came closer than I’ve ever come, and that was just longhand. I thought for sure I’d break the 50k mark this time. Ah well, best-laid schemes.
Still, got some interesting gems in this year’s attempt:
Algorigamithm: the mathematical description of the method by which hardcopy data is compressed to fit inside mailing envelopes. The United States Postal Service is seen as a sort of analog packet-switching network in the novel, a backup to the lightning-fast central nervous system that is the Internet.
Meganism: describes the planet-wide macrofauna creature that the human race is rapidly becoming. Nice resonance with “mechanism”, too.
The Hive-Human and the Event Horizon: It’s the book’s McGuffin, a sprawling, hundreds-of-pages long treatise on how the human race is shaping itself into a single collective being, each human being analogous to a cell in the human body, with the highway system as a circulatory system and the Internet as the nervous system. According to the theory expounded by one of the characters, it’s the next step in biological organization, as momentous as the transition from single-celled life to complex multicellular plants and animals.
The Hive-Human is the massive colony-creature made up of individual humans. The Event Horizon describes the physical boundary leading to new environments where those who reject the Hive go: across the ocean to the New World, “Gone to Texas”, etc. It’s a safety valve. Without an Event Horizon, the Hive self-destructs as those elements that want to leave are forced to stay and because they don’t fit, the Hive has to contain them with prisons, executions, and other uncivilized behavior. The irony is that eventually the Hive also crosses the Event Horizon, following its pre-swarm scouts to new environments, a glider gun that packs up and follows the gliders.
And there's a whole subplot with the villain wanting to use the Large Hadron Collider to run a timing attack on the Planck Limit as an attempt to destabilize local space-time and take his revenge on a universe that caused him to exist when he really didn’t want to in the first place.
Just like Pilots and Pilgrims last year, I’d love to finish this one. I’ll probably return to it off and on over the next few months. I never completely abandon anything, just keep passing smaller and smaller halfway points, never beating that damn tortoise of Zeno’s.