Once again we are joined by Nicole of The Madlab Post. On her last visit she offered a creative look at comment styles based on characters from the Harry Potter stories. Today Nicole provides some tips on finding inspiration for blog posts (or anything else for that matter) from movies about writing.
Survival Tactics for NaBloPoMo from Writers in the Movies
It seems that everyone around the globe was getting their NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo or some version of them, on this month and I was no exception. I joined NaBloPoMo and was doing well blogging everyday until I missed one day 2 weeks ago. I abandoned it after that because I figured that there was no point in daily blogging in November since I already made that hiccup.
It felt like a failure, especially since I planned to write posts in advance and schedule them to publish but didn’t follow through on those plans. However, I did manage to complete NaBloPoMo in July and recently noticed that by using writers on film as inspiration for creating blog posts, anyone can finish a NaNo-undertaking in November or any other month. Coming up with post ideas was not my problem nor the reason I missed a day. I just forgot to blog, but these NaBloPoMo survival tactics from writers in the movies can help you whether you’re planning posts in advance or writing them off the cuff.
The Sean Connery Way: Play off of Another Blogger’s Post
In “Finding Forrester,” Jamal rewrote William’s earlier work and used it for a writting contest at his school. Find other blogs that bring credibility to or extend the topics that you are writing about on your blog and rather than rewriting their post, use it to build upon the same topic. This can help you connect with other NaBloPoMo participants and share each others reader base. You can achieve this by constructing blog posts that play off of something already written out in the blogosphere. By doing so, I do not mean for you to choose a counterargument or opposite viewpoint such as writing “The Benefits of Buying Organic” as a response to, or based on another blogger’s post that is about “The Disadvantages of Organic Fruits and Vegetables.”
Playing off of a post on another blog also does not refer to putting a spin on it such as writing about how the new and used book war is good for competition between small businesses, after another blogger wrote a post that discusses the rate at which new book sales are declining compared to the same time last year.....although you CAN do all of these things as well if it will help you survive the struggles of writer’s block and lack of motivation that surfaces during NaBloPoMo. The “Finding Forrester” way that I am referring to is to just merely post a short excerpt of something written by another blogger as a way to prove a point that you are trying to make about a particular subject or as a way to help your readers further understand what you are trying to tell them. An example of this would be if I were to write a blog post about the difficulties of deciding whether to commit suicide or not, by listing the challenges facing why to do it and why to avoid that route.
In the latter section, I could write about the things that life has to offer and not only reference one of my favorite quotes by Madonna where she talks about people being responsible for what happens in their lives, but I could also use this opportunity to play off of the recent Tossing It Out post titled “What Are You Doing for Christmas?” where Lee says “ Life is waiting for you to savor it before you have to leave this world. There has been good and good things are still to come. Much of that good is for you to find or create. Be thankful not just at Thanksgiving, but every day of your life.” That section of his post brings some validity to what I’m already trying to say, especially since the entire post will make you not want to kill yourself or at the very least, it will make you pause and reevaluate some things.
The Johnny Depp Way: Channel Your Inner Stalker
In “Secret Window,” Mort and Shooter dangerously tango through dealings with psychosis, plagiarism and justice, all in the pursuit of the perfect ending to a story. There are several ways to use this movie to help you write posts during NaBloPoMo but I’ll only touch on a few here. First, you can sorta plagiarise yourself by rewriting old posts that you either no longer enjoy reading and want to improve or posts that you have had a change of heart on. An example of this would be my dislike for the rapper Nicki Minaj’s music when she became popular over the last two years or so. Therefore, if I were to write a review of her album upon it’s release, my blog post probably would’ve said that her voice is so annoying and the lyrics are so dumb that she makes me want to go on a hip-hop fast for as long as she is on the scene. Today, I actually like some of her songs...so much so that I bought her album, which is something that I didn’t think I would ever do. Using the “Secret Window” approach, I could rewrite my review and add more favorable responses to this girl’s music.
Secondly, you can write blog posts in the voice of either several other people OR several different parts of yourself. This might be an interesting way to continue through the days of NaBloPoMo because it forces you to write things that you may have normally avoided otherwise and it also forces you to write in ways or in tones that could surprise your readers and go against the grain of your everyday blogging activities. An example of this would be to get angry and write a rant on Monday about whatever makes you mad...but do not write it as yourself. Write it in the tone of the angriest or meanest person that you know OR write it in your own tone, as if you were speaking to someone whom you would love to tell off, if given the opportunity.
No one rings the bell? That is ok too. I’m sure there is a celebrity that just gets on your last nerve, so use that as a starting point. Let’s use, say, Kim Kardashian as an example since many people love her and many people don’t. If you were placed in a room with Ms. Kardashian and given 5 minutes to tell her off, what would you say? Ok, now write that in your next blog post! Actually, let’s back up for a minute. If you are angry with some aspect of corporate greed, gun control, animal poaching, healthcare reform or whatever gets your pots boiling, take these matters and write a blog post that reads in the tone of a letter to Kim Kardashian, as if she were that corporate executive stealing millions from workers, or that rifle toting person or that criminal poaching decorative elephant parts for profit...you get the point.
Are you usually angry anyway on your blog? Fine. Write a post about the same matters, in the nicest tone that you can. Or, write about something that makes you happy, in the tone of Carol Brady from “The Brady Bunch,” rather than writing about things that make you angry. Whatever you do, be somebody else or another version of yourself for a day. It’s like trying on another personality for size, just like you try on a pair of new shoes or clothes. Doing so may help you learn more about yourself, offer insight to what does and does not matter, and most importantly.....it will help you survive NaBloPoMo!
Which survival tactics from “Finding Forrester” or “Secret Window” are YOU likely to use for your daily blogging activities? How did YOU survive NaBloPoMo, NaNoWriMo, or any other writing equivalent? If YOU missed a day or two, what caused this hiccup and how did you respond to it?
Thank you Nicole for another great guest post. Be sure to visit Nicole at her blog Madlab Post and tell her hello.