As I mentioned in a discussion question a few episodes ago, I’m going to be participating in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) this year. This will be my second time attempting it; I was successful back in 2011 and hope to repeat that this year. I’m sharing this because I’m hoping to entice a few of you to join me.
What is NaNoWriMo?
National Novel Writing Month is an event that takes place every November. The goal is to write a novel of 50,000 words in thirty days. Granted, that’s a fairly short novel, but the length was chosen because it’s difficult to hit, but still very possible. Thirty days doesn’t give you a ton of time, which pretty much forces you to just write without worrying about making edits. If you do everything right, you end the month with a fairly short and very rough novel, but a novel nonetheless.
The idea here is that getting out that first draft if often the most difficult and daunting part of the process. By forcing people to focus only on hammering out text means there’s no time for the distraction of tweaking what you already have. That prevents us from falling into the trap of constantly editing rather than moving forward with the plot.
Additionally, there’s a very strong community aspect. You’re doing this along with a ton of other people, and they’re here to help and encourage you. There’s a great forum and even events you can go to if you’re into that type of thing. Interested? Check out the website for more info.
Let’s Do it Together
What I’d like to do is drag a few of you into this with me (Rattraveller is already on board). If you haven’t already, go sign up and be my writing buddy by hitting up my profile. Don’t worry; I’ll be sure to reciprocate.
So What Now?
Well obviously, it’s not November yet. And that’s a good thing. While you can’t actually start writing your novel early, you can do some prep work, which will help you out a ton come November 1st. So here’s what you should do: create a new folder in Google Docs called “NaNoWriMo 2014” and just start cranking out all your planning. Outline the story, write up character bios, make a list of ideas. The more work you do here, the easier it’s going to be to hit that 50,000 words in November.