Home » Writing » The Dark Chasm of Alternative Learning: AKA A Novel In A Month!

The Dark Chasm of Alternative Learning: AKA A Novel In A Month!


It’s nearly a new year, a new opportunity and a fresh start. So…

I want to do a novel in a month.

It sounds a lot, but really isn’t. All it requires is 2000 words a day and by the end there is a respectable (in length, if not in content) 60,000 words or so.

I’ve had a bunch of ideas for novels in the past and had a number of attempts at writing one, though I’ve never managed to finish writing one. I had considered going back to one of the old ones and trying to finish that, but that doesn’t excite me sufficiently to make it a viable option.

I was trying to make a list of topics, but couldn’t really think of anything. Then I read Howl by Allen Ginsberg, (you can read Parts 1 and 2 of four here, as I recommend you all do). Then I appropriated the first line and wrote a blurb, then a second blurb.

So I think I’m going to follow this and see where it goes.

I’m not sure if I can keep up the style for a whole novel, nor am I sure it is desirable to do so, but it will certainly be an experience, one way or the other.

I was unsure whether or not I should paste the exploits here and have decided not to. Instead, I will post the occasional update on my progress.

However, if you wish to read (and hopefully comment, constructively of course!) the essentially unedited, undrafted chapters as they are released I will be uploading them to a separate blog.

Please be aware from the start that the content is not suitable for work, nor is it suitable for those of a certain disposition. It is blatant in its imagery and transgressive in its nature.

That said, if do decide to read it I hope you enjoy it.

The first two chapters of The Dark Chasm of Alternative Learning (the title of which is taken from this Johnny Depp article on The Beats) can be found here.


6 thoughts on “The Dark Chasm of Alternative Learning: AKA A Novel In A Month!

  1. Good luck with the novel.

    Don’t know how achievable going from writing 0 to 60,000 words in a month will be, but I used the recent NaNoWriMo to write a 28,000 word novella. Sometimes having a definite ending can help focus your mind.

    You seem to be a more regular poster on your blog than I am on mine, so that’s always a good start!

    • Thank you!

      It is a big target, but I think I need to get the bare bones down quickly before I lose interest. Getting things finished is the biggest challenge at the moment.

      At the moment I don’t even have a definite next chapter, just the feeling. As long as I can hold on to that then I can go forward one step at a time. Without that I tend to get stuck and the project fall by the wayside.

      I started blogging to write more but today I’ve been blogging to not write the other things! 🙂

      • Have you ever tried planning things out in advance?

        I’m trying to write a big thing at the moment, I’ve found that having a loose skeleton has helped me, so I have a rough guide to where I want to go (even though I’ve changed things as I go along.
        Though your first draft could be a more advanced version of the same idea…

        Anyway, good luck!

        • I have, to a point. I’ve sat down and broken an idea down into individual chapters and written synopses of what is going to happen all the way through, but they tend to take the mystery out of it for me. I think I enjoy not knowing what I’m writing about. Maybe it’s just an excuse.

          I’ve always been one for massive redrafting, ever since we had to write stories for English class. Margins full to bursting with corrections and re-writes. Not sure it is actually the best way to go about it, or whether I’ve adopted it by default. I guess I’m still trying to find something that works.

          Thank you, and good luck with your big project!

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