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12/01/18: Guess what? I did it! At 10:45 CST last night, I submitted my file to the automatic counter on the NaNoWriMo web site, and it reported that I had written 50,505 words since November 1st. As you can see on the graph here, I was behind every day until the last. Even though I took some time off of work with the intention of writing, I still had to write like a fiend on the last day to hit my goal.
     It's funny, but I don't have the sense of accomplishment I did the other times. I think it's probably because while I have enough here to put out as what will likely be book two in the Barnstormers series, the overall story has a long way to go. At least I got to see the video at the end of the NaNoWriMo people cheering my success. I love that part.


11/28/18: I've long been a fan of Frank Zappa's music. I was introduced to the music of Captain Beefheart because of his occasional collaborations with Zappa, but it was not until the past few years that I've really grown fond of the odd sounds that the good Captain and his band of oddballs made on the records that I purchased back when records were a thing.
     Years ago I picked up a 10-record box set of Zappa bootlegs, and one of those included was an odd little record called Metal Man Has Hornet's Wings. It's a collection of early Zappa tunes with a couple of Beefheart songs mixed in. The title track, which later showed up on the legitimate Mystery Disk release, has Beefheart tweeting like a bird and riffing over a bluesy little tune. I always like the song, but I could never figure out what the man was singing about.
     Now I know. This morning I stumbled across this article from 2017 that explains that the lyrics on the song (actually titled Metal Man Has Lost His Wings) were improvised by Beefheart from text head read on the cover of a Metal Men comic that happened to be laying around the studio that day. The article points to advertised one of his albums in Marvel Comics back in 1968, so the comics connection wasn't new. I think that this is a very small peek into the creative process of two favorites of mine.


11/01/18: I probably should have my head examined, but I'm attempting NaNoWriMo again this year. For those of you new to the neighborhood, this is the National Novel Writing Month challenge that has people all over the world attempting to write a 50,000 word first draft of a novel in the month of November. This will be my fifth attempt, after having been successful on all four previous tries, so I feel the stakes are a little higher this year. I hope to complete book two of my Barnstormers story in 30 days. Wish me luck!



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