Painting of Isadora Duncan

Painting of Isadora Duncan
by Fritz August von Kaulbach from
“Isadora Duncan, The Art of the Dance”
Courtesy Theatre Arts Books.

I just read an inspiring pep talk for National Novel Writing Month–which is NOW. (Or should I say NOV?) A wonderful articulation of imagery by Chuck Wendig, the accomplished and hilarious author of the blog, Terrible Minds.  Something about keys in your hand, a Lamborghini and an open field in front of you.  I encourage you to read it.  It’s wonderful.

But something did not quite click with my soul.  It seemed to be–for guys.  Am I being sexist?  Or am I reacting the same way I would if the imagery had been about cooking–which would be to gag a little?  So I decided to create my own pep talk to encourage people to accept the novel-in-a-month challenge, no matter what their skill level or knowledge of the form and function of novels.

For what it’s worth, consider yourself pep-talked:

Imagine yourself alone in a performance theater, the doors are all locked, the music is turned up. It’s no one but you. You have the stage to yourself. All your life, you’ve been told to cover up. Be modest. Fear has kept you from  exposing your true self. Your beauty has cowered behind social convention.

But now, there are no rules.  The lights come up, inviting you, tantalizing you into  dangerous circles of transparency on the stage floor. Brilliant scarves rain down from above.  You grab up handfuls of color. Yards and yards of silky fabric defy gravity as they slip through your hands.

Go ahead.

DuncanienneStrip off your clothes.

Run and prance, free as the wind, floating on the rhythms of the music. The scarves flow behind you carving Mandelbrot patterns out of random air currents. You are filled with the spirit of Isadora Duncan–then even she is shocked, amazed, and titillated.

Sing! At the top of your lungs. Let arias pour forth from your soul as you whirl to the dance of creativity. Entomb yourself in silk and explode out of it. Reborn.  Now write.

Guys can do this, too.