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  • Writer's pictureJason Haskins

November, November, writing updates to remember

Autumn sunset in Nevada with tall trees in foreground

This month's update is sweet and to the point, covering the basics of what I am working on and what's been keeping me entertained in the world. Normally, a longer intro is used but I branched that off into a separate post about August Wilson, playwriting, and information I learned in the book I am currently reading, ' When Broadway was Black'.

November is upon us, so let's begin with writing updates. No National Novel Writing Month for me this year but I do have a longstanding goal to reach 50,000 words in November. Officially in my spreadsheet, the goal is 35,000. This is close to my monthly average for 2023 but I do like to bump it up, especially if not participating in this special month. (Special for NaNoWriMo, not my birthday. Which I suppose is a special occasion, too).

I am working on one novel I started back with NaNoWriMo in 2021. I smacked down about 30,000 words that year and then drifted away from the project. But, I have jumped back in and recent months have seen progress.

Of course, this project is fourth on my current list of writing projects. The top three are a novel (Through the End of Time), a full-length play, and a new youth adult novella. These three have taken top priority, with steady progress on each. With any luck, I will have a finished first draft of the play in early 2024.

I bounce around between other projects, too, as well as laying down thoughts on sports, pop culture, and more over on The Journey of Now blog. A few samples of last month's work:

November also means time to remind readers of 2019's Of Snow Forts and Santa. If not for you, feel free to share this Christmas story with the readers in your life who are 10 years of age and older.

What I'm watching

Well, well, well. The television is on far too often, commonly acting as background noise to days filled with rain splattering against dirty windows.

Bottom line, is I probably watch too much, absorb very little, and move onto the next with little memory of what happened. It's what the studio overlords want, isn't it?

Fine. Fair enough. I remember way too much. I finished Mrs. Davis recently, which I enjoyed but the story did lose steam the last few episodes. Reservation Dogs has my heart forever, Sex Education is going strong, and The Fall of the House of Usher was a fantastic cap to my two-month stretch of watching movies and shows of the season.

I was a little late to the Mike Flanagan hype but am glad I am here. Unlike the American Horror Stories series, Flanagan has found ways to keep me engrossed an entire series. Whereas the Ryan Murphy led AHS fails in this department (so much I haven't even watched the last two seasons? Three? I am too lazy to look up the title but the last one I watched was the one with aliens). Those first seasons of AHS were the best and since, oh, season five, they start out strong and quickly fade. Let's hope Flanagan keeps the train rolling.

A Haunting in Venice was a fine addition to my Halloween Haunts list on Letterboxd and I also gave a go at the Jennifer Lawrence vehicle No Hard Feelings. It was... okay. A few chuckles, an entertaining story, and had a throwback vibe to comedies from the 1980s that the filmmakers didn't quite fully embrace.

Reading? You betcha!

It's the miracle of miracles, they say. After months and months, you finally finished David Copperfield by Charles Dickens. What will you do next? Start reading War and Peace.

Okay. That's false. Though I do believe it's time to finally read that copy I bought years ago. I also finished Letters to a Young Poet by Rainier Maria Rilke and Red Fleece by Will Levington Comfort. In addition to the book mentioned at the top of this post, I am also reading Home Land: A Novel by Sam Lipsyte and have no less than five plays ready to dive into that interested me on the New Play Exchange.

The stack of books to be read is getting low again and it's usually around this time of year I load up. So, suggestions are always welcome!

Around the internet

A lot is happening around the world. We all have access to see the hate, despair, poverty, mass shootings, and more occurring daily.

Therefore, I want to keep it a little light here:

- Filmed over ten years, this documentary LIFT shines a spotlight on the invisible story of homelessness in America through the eyes of a group of young homeless and home-insecure ballet dancers in New York City.

- Take a glimpse inside Ernest Hemingway's last years of life in Idaho

- A group of immigrant artists have created the Immigrant Theatermakers Advocates, with a plan to build community and provide resources for immigrant artists.

Thanks for stopping by this month. Be bold. Be kind.

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