NOTE: If you are coming cold to ‘National Write Like a Son of a B*tch Month,’ please read this first.
by Douglas Imbrogno | Greetings. We have some updates if you are a W-SOB participant or are contemplating joining this month’s noble efforts to kick your writing self into gear, if not in the rear.
Addendum 1: Mea Culpa
So, this is my son-of-a-bitching mea culpa. I, yes, I, your faithful founder of National Write Like a Son of a B*tch Month have not, I must admit, it is true, godforgiveme, I…
I have NOT been writing like a son of a bitch.
I am here to inform you, in this cometojesus moment, that I am now effective immediately commencing more fully — re-committing, if you will — to writing like one helluva son-of-a-bitch (thank you, Brother Jim) through November’s remaining days.
For after all, are we not in this together? Are we not trying to be more faithful to our impatient Muses? Pity those weary souls, who wait, yellow Ticonderoga No. 2‘s rolling between fingers or with fingernails clacking on keys, for us to sit ourselves in front of a desk, to hotwire our laptops, to pick up the damn writing utensil wouldyouplease! And get ourselves to work!
But how? Why, oh why, you ask yourself, have I not written anything substantial for the last several days/weeks/months/years? If that describes you, and it certainly describes me for the last several weeks, we encourage you right now, to join us in this revival and repeat after me:
I, [your name here], am going to start writing like a son of a bitch right now. Right this very second. I hereby pinkie promise.
(We’ll wait while you fire up Word or WordPress, or pull out a notebook/journal/sheet of paper/bank stub or napkin ….”
And so it begins.
Addendum 2: An Inspirational Poem
It is HARD to write like a son of a bitch. Let us admit this bald fact. So, I have made a discovery. It is not a radical discovery. It is hardly MY discovery. Yet it is a discovery nonetheless because, well, I discovered it. It’s kind of like an episode on my personal ‘DISCOVERY’ channel.
Anyway, the discovery is this one: You know how to write like a son of a bitch? Start writing. Start writing until you end up past the point of non-writing and realize, hey, I had better start kicking my legs because I am no longer on shore. I am floating out on an ocean of words, far from the safety of Non-Writing Land.
And so, you kick your legs. And you realize: Hey, I can do this! I can float on all these words! And the more I kick (a.k.a. – write), the farther and longer I can swim.
This may feel like automatic writing. Like you are (to switch metaphors in mid-Addendum) pushing a bunch of consonants, vowels and dipthongs around in a wheelbarrow on the page. And that’s true, there is a self-propulsive force to just pushing yourself to the actual act of writing without, necessarily having anything to say.
Or so you think.
But how will you know that unless you, like, write.
Here is a poem I once wrote, which I hereby officially deem the Official Poem of National Write Like a Son of a B*tch Month:
There is a difference between
people who do things
and people who
The difference is
+ + + + +
P.S. You may substitute ‘people who write things/write them’ for ‘people who do things, do them’. And ‘people who don’t write things/don’t write’ for ‘people who don’t/don’t.’
Which is a far more ungainly poem. But you get the point.
And now ask yourself – which of those kinds of people do you wish to be?
I thought so.
Addendum 3: Official Name Change
As a result of complaints from no one and soley because we like the look of it (plus, we don’t want to offend our sweet born-again Christian friend who sits near us at work), we are hereby officially changing the name of ‘National Write Like a Son of a Bitch Month’ to ‘National Write Like a Son of a B*tch Month.’ The acronym shall remain, as ever: W-SOB.
We wish our original name had been boycotted by some national organization, like Mothers Against Drunk Writing (MADW). This might have given us some press and so enlarged the number of W-SOB participants in this, our inaugural year, to more than the 7 or 8 of you who have so far signed on. But trust in this. You few are veritable pioneers of writing like sons of bitches. (Excuse me, ‘sons of b*tches’).
And perhaps we will hear from some cranky feminist writers’ group, standing up on behalf of ‘daughters of b*tches,’ which might also drive some bad-ass PR our way. Which, if you think about it, daughters of b*tches are a truly under-represented group in the popular culture and lingo. Why is that? Is this some form of discrimination?
For that matter, what about ‘sons of bastards’? And ‘daughters of bastards’?
But we digress.
Which, it should be noted, is a good way to keep your Muses beavering away.
Whatever it takes.
Addendum No. 4: Possibly Hyper-Useful Suggestion
As part of our Official Suggestions for National Write Like a Son of a B*tch Month, we encourage the following.
REVOLVE YOUR E-MAIL: Start an e-mail message write now and address it to yourself. SUBJECT LINE: W-SOB, Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012 (or whatever date you begin said e-mail). Start writing an email to yourself. Just start writing. Describe the weirdness of writing an e-mail to yourself. Describe the room you are in. Complain about your lover or lack of one. Describe exactly where you were when you learned Obama had been re-elected and how you and your crankiest relative took the news. Whatever. Just start the consonants and vowels, the synonyms and similes, coming. Get a page down without stopping. Or two.
Now it is three hours later. Or six hours. Or the next day. Open up that e-mail to yourself. Update the subject line. ‘SUBJECT LINE: W-SOB, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012.’ Type in a new date or new hour. Start writing again above the body of text that you wrote before. Write for a few minutes. Write for ten.
Hit ‘Send‘ again.
Rinse and repeat, sending this revolving e-mail notebook to yourself through the month of November. It may very well have a high crap-to-noise ratio (this is a technical term). But you will have kept an easily accessible digital journal going for days and weeks.
In such fits and spurts – since this kind of writing exercise can be dashed off at work while you take a breather from furthering the glories of the March of Capitalism — you may accomplish more writing time, cumulatively, than you have done up to this time all year.
And that’s a good thing. Plus, with your self-esteem bolstered by the fact that you are now writing as opposed to not-writing — which is a sorry-ass state for anyone who believes themselves a writer — you will be a far happier cog in the machine. As a result, the Man will be happier with you.
Then, when you really get going on your writing, you can stick it to the Man. We mean, metaphorically, of course. (But if do, like, actually stick it to the Man, like with your Ticonderoga No. 2 or lunch fork, let us know. So we can write about that. True crime tales always sells)
This will bring great satisfaction, this writing success. If not, eventually, revolution. Or, at the very least, a revolution in your own thinking and that of your readers. You take revolution where you can find it.
And there might — there just might — be a few good sentences in there somewhere in that e-mail screed. Or maybe the stubby, blunt end of a raw mineral you can pull out, dust-off, shine up and refine into a real gem.
Just remember us little people when you are short-listed for the Booker Prize.
Announcing National Write Like a Son of a B*tch Month