Wednesday, October 5, 2005

Having idea for book isn't novel

For aspiring novelists, still trying to peck out their story on the typewriter, November may be the perfect incentive: National Novel Writing Month. Under NaNoWriMo rules -- as laid out on -- speed writers have from midnight on Nov. 1 until midnight on Nov. 30 to come up with 50,000 words. That won't make it easier to finish the first 100 pages, but Tuesday's lunch crowd in downtown Roanoke proved the adage that we all have a novel inside us.

And for readers only October is, among other things, National Book Month.


Disabled veteran, Roanoke

Have you ever thought about writing a novel?

Yeah, plenty of times. You really want to know the truth? I thought about writing one about drug problems 'cause I was an addict myself.

Where would this book be set?

In Baltimore, Md. That's where I first got introduced to drugs, after I got out of the service.

I bet you have a lot of stories from serving in the military?

Yeah, and a lot of them have to do with drugs. I would write my book explaining to people what drug life is like and the only way out of it is jail time or death.

You're very candid, a good quality for a writer.

I didn't used to be.


Office manager, Floyd

Would you write a novel about your life?

I'm so in the middle, it's like the novel that's to be continued. I just turned 40 this month so maybe the first volume's complete and the sequel is coming.

What's the title?

The one to date, "How Not to Live Your Life."

So it's a story about turning corners?

Oh, lessons learned. I started out as a very young mother. ... I feel a lot wiser than I did 20 years ago.


Real estate appraiser, Fincastle

What would your novel be about?

An early trip from here in the early Civil War days, through the Cumberland Gap and to the West.

Would it be a story of hardship?

New beginnings. Hardship and then looking for the new beginnings. Maybe a Civil War soldier who may have lost his farm and decided to leave altogether for a new life out West. It sounds a little bit like "Cold Mountain," but a little bit different.

Who would be the hero?

Maybe an Indian that befriended the soldier.


Assembly line runner, Roanoke

What would your novel be about?

You got to crawl before you walk. So it would basically be about what we live, what we feed and what we grow off of. Would it be based on your own life?


Does your book have a title?

Yeah, "One Step at a Time." I wish I could call it "Life," you know what I'm saying?


Attorney, Roanoke

What would your novel be about?

My only comment is I'm presently reading Kinky Friedman.

October happens to be National Book Month, as well.

People should read four books a month. And lay off the television a little.

[Pete Dybdahl / The Roanoke Times]

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