But I thought we were arch enemies! (and) I’m you’re wife, damn the sheep!

I’m pretty good at improv but I’m definitely good at text message improv. Over the past two days I’ve had some fantastic banter between Jack Tindall and Elijah Gill. Prepare to meet my arch-enemy and sheep-cheating husband!

WILLOW
Sorry I missed the Film Club screening.
What’s one next Monday?

JACK
The cinema has flooded at the moment so
don’t worry. I was projecting last night and
the next morning it was flooded. I swear it
wasn’t me.

WILLOW
That’s what they all say – but I’m onto you, mister.
You better watch where your flooding if I were
you. I’m watching.

JACK
The way it’s going, you’ll be next.

WILLOW
It takes a mastermind to flood me out of town.
Your threat has been laughed off, laughed off I say!

JACK
Well, you watch out. My minions will start to flood
your house very soon. That might dampen the
mood. MWAHAHAHAHA.

WILLOW
Your minions will have to bring the lake if they’re
to reach me on the third floor. I’ll fight minions
with minions. Minions with stairs. Minions with
fiery stairs! That ‘dampened mood’ of yours will
look mighty toasty then.

JACK
Maybe I will encapsulate your house in a forcefield
and fill it that way. No escape. YOU ARE DOOMED.

WILLOW
I SEE HOW IT IS. Luckily my wardrobe teleports
in such emergencies as being trapped by a
forcefield about to flood with water. I will
teleport to your roof and apprehend you in the act!
I will watch from afar and cackle with my
detectives camera. Then where will you be?!
Nicked! That’s what.

JACK
Ah, but I have thought  about that. I have a
wardrobe-transporter-blocker installed. If
you try it, you will be quantum dislocated into
the multiverse.

WILLOW
NOOOOOOO! How could you do that to me?
I thought we were arch enemies. I thought we had
something – the bonds of madness and obsession
– and your willing to quantum dislocate me into
the multiverse? You could dispose of me and
find a new super detective without trauma?
I’m hurt, Tindall. Quite frankly I’m hurt. Flood
my bloody house. It doesn’t matter any more!

JACK
You have persuaded me not to. We make an
awesome team. When I take over the world,
you can have New Zealand? Sound fair?

WILLOW
(Sigh of relief)
Sounds fair. Sounds fair. You should run
now before the police arrive. I’ll give you a
half hour head start.

As you can see, Tuesday was an epic event. Onto more domestic matters this was today’s spat and challenge:

ELIJAH
I’m late for class. I’m not coming in. What
am I missing? Never mind, I’m sure you’ll
muddle on without me.

WILLOW
I can’t! I can’t go on without you! *weeps*

ELIJAH
(sigh)
Why do I always have this effect on women?
And men. And sheep called Bernard.

WILLOW
I don’t need to know what you and Bernard
do, Elijah. You told me that was over!

ELIJAH
I always thought you overreacted to this,
it was only Poker.

WILLOW
You say Poker but I know different. You think
I’m blind, don’t you? I can’t – I can’t take this
any more, Elijah! My poor heart – my nerves!
This marriage is on the rocks, I tell you.

ELIJAH
We can’t divorce! What would happen to poor
little Phoenix Batman Tron and Ripley Samus
Tifa?! Think of the children!

WILLOW
The children could have it worse. They could
be living with your mother!

ELIJAH
My mother is lovely. She was not trying
to sell them to wealthy Mexican dry lords,
that was all a hilarious misunderstanding
involving a carrot.

WILLOW
Just like the time she wrote ‘Protestant Whore’
on the back of our wedding batmobile, too, I
suppose!

ELIJAH
OK I’ll give you that one, but how was I supposed
to know she’d been brainwashed and turned into
a paypal assassin?

WILLOW
You’re just being ridiculous now. Take me seriously
for once! Please, for me, darling, come into class.
I’m sorry. I just – please? You’re mother’s lovely.

ELIJAH
Alright, I’ll stop trying to outsilly you. I’ll even
stop playing Poker with Bernard.

And that’s how you get a fellow classmate into university. My job here is done. Have a great day and write lots!

NaNoWriMo approachs. I might be a little terrified.

First off, before I ramble on about NaNoWriMo, do you like my new banner? I’m in love with this picture, created by Marta Dahlig. I wish I could have it framed on my wall. I’ve got a thing for fish that float through the air. And ginger girls.

Onto business…

It’s officially 14 days until the start of NaNoWriMo. Are you ready? Are you excited? Are you stocked up with coffee and microwavable food?  Are you terrified that life will suck you into a void of stress and failure because you don’t know what you’re going to write about and you know that you’ve got too much to deal with this semester?

I’m here to tell you: don’t panic. I’m here to tell you: I’m excited and nervous as well. We can do this.

The key is to remember that you are about to embark on creating a first draft. It doesn’t matter how terrible it is (the first draft is always shit), it doesn’t matter how gaping the plot-holes are, and it doesn’t matter how poor your grammar might become. NaNoWriMo is a first draft.

Rule #1: don’t go back and edit.
Rule #2: if you have an idea for chapter two, make a note – have a NaNo note book. Don’t look back.
Rule #3: bombs are allowed at any given moment.
Rule #4: running out of steam? Kill off an important character.

It’s OK guys. This is going to be a super fun month and part of the fun is the pressure. We moan and groan and feel like the washing basket will eat us with its neglected dirty underwear, but we love being forced to immerse ourselves in a fictional world.

If you’re really worried about crunch day my advice would be to make a mood board. It’s my life saver. Pictures inspire you in ways you might not expect. Also: the way you subconsciously arrange the pictures on your mood board will tell you things about the characters or events. My professor would tell you to search through magazines and tear out any picture you’re drawn to, but I can’t always be bothered with that. The internet is just as good a resource. I would suggest browsing deviantArt or etsy. Now that I’ve chosen all my images to print out this year I’m feeling much more confident about my story idea.

Last year’s mood board:


You can do this. It’s time to psyche ourselves up and schedule our work load to fit with NaNoWriMo. You are an overflowing source of imagination and capable of great things.

Excited yet?