NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. The official month for
NaNoWriMo is November, although anyone can pick any other month to give it a shot for fun.
The goal is to write a 50,000 word novel – really closer to a novella than a novel – over the course of November. If you do the math, that comes out to 1,667 words per day. At about 500 words per single spaced page, that comes out to a little over 3 pages per day.
That’s a lot!
It was an accomplishment for me to start writing one page every day. NaNoWriMo asks me to more than triple my output.
The official NaNoWriMo website says it “is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to creative writing.”
If I were to be fair, I probably wouldn’t describe much of the writing I’ve done in my life as seat-of-my-pants. More like: intermittently fun, occasionally frustrating, and for some inexplicable reason the best part of my day and one of the most important things in my life.
I do, however, think deadlines have the power to bring out the best in people, and I also appreciate how much being part of a larger movement can help with sustaining motivation. Make sure to check out the forum and blog.
NaNoWriMo is a great project for everyone and anyone, whether they are growing writers, established writers, or just folks looking for some fun or to sink their teeth into some writing.
NaNoWriMo is a fantastic way for budding writers to rip of the band-aid and really get something done. The prospect of writing a novel is daunting, and many people struggle with where and when and how to start. NaNoWriMo wants you to forget all of that. You start on November 1st, and you write and write and write until November 30th. You just do it.
Also, you could find that you produce something great. Sure, the first draft might need a heck of a lot of work, but that’s just part of the process of writing. It could be the basis for a true novel, something worth publishing. In fact, hundreds of writers have gone on to traditionally or self-publish their NaNo Novel.
This will be my first year as a NaNoWriMo participant. I heard about it many years ago as a high schooler, but like I have with many writing related things, I let life get in the way. I told myself that I would do it “some day.”
Unfortunately, “some day” is so often “never,” and if I hadn’t devised writing rules a year ago, it would’ve been never for me.
November 1st will be my “some day.”
Good luck in this year’s NaNoWriMo!
Img: Paul Bica