National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) starts tomorrow. And I’ve decided to do it. Hips, prepare to expand from the hours of sitting at my computer typing and all the chocolate needed to survive this month .
Here’s the premise: You dedicate yourself to writing a 50,000 word novel in the month of November. You don’t begin until November 1st and you have until midnight on November 30th to submit your book. It averages out to about 1700 words a day, roughly an hour a day of writing, depending on how fast you type. At the end you scramble you’re novel, submit it to their schmancy online counting machine and “win” NaNoWriMo (and by “win”, I mean you get the satisfaction of knowing you’ve written a novel. They give you a certificate to prove it). They don’t read your book, so there’s no fear of book stealing. Yes, you could technically just write the same word over and over again and submit it, but if you’re really that bored, please come to my house and scrub the tile in my bathroom.
I did this two years ago and got about 35,000 words into a novel. I did not complete it mainly because I had a crazy month that year. I went out of town and had two out of town guests, so the fact that I got 35,000 words was something I was proud of.
In doing this, I run the risk of not only failing to get to 50,000, but also delaying book edits on the book I’ve been working on for over a year. But I could also come out of this with a great story and another book to work on once I’ve completed the first. And now that I’ve put it out here into the internetisphere, I feel a certain pressure to actually do it, to “win” it. And I think I need that kind of self-induced pressure to work. At the very least I will thrust myself back into the bare bones creative process of writing, something I think will be good for me right now.
So join me! It’s not too late. Just click the link above and create an account for yourself. You can then create an author bio (that’s right, you would be able to call yourself an author!) and write a synopsis for your book and you are set. Then starting at midnight tonight, you write your heart out for the next 30 days.
“But D!” I hear you crying. “I don’t have a plot outline! I don’t have a story arc! I haven’t written since college! I can’t do this.”
You can totally write a book this month. All I have is an idea. No other fancy stuff, just an idea. And if I can barrel through it so can you. Come on; join me in this crazy quest and check that off of your life’s to-do list. There are also people doing this all over the world, creating an awesome online community and “write-ins” pretty much everywhere (a gathering of other people crazy enough to try this. These almost always involve coffee in some form), so you won’t feel so lonely in your mission.
You know you want to. Peer pressure…
**If you are reading this on, say, November 3rd, no worries! You can still sign up. Do it! Do it!
Oh NaNoWriMo. I did not win this year. I didn’t get super far even. I started with the best intentions and tons of enthusiasm, but, well, there it is.
I have a ton of excuses, but do you really want to read about those? Probably not. Let’s just say that it is a hard task to undertake and I’m glad I at least tried to.
On the plus side, it did motivate me in other areas of my writing. I was able to get some cool stuff accomplished in the month of November and I’m proud of that at least. I also really like the story I got rolling with and will probably try to develop it more.
But no big W for me. I can’t say I hit 50,000 in one month.
My final total was 13,095.