Thursday, November 6, 2014

NaNoWriMo 2014

Hi all

I don't have a lot of time for a full blog entry, but I thought I'd let everyone know that I'm attempting to write a novel for National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, as it's affectionately called. I don't know how successful I'll be this time out, since I'm already way behind where I should be, but the point for me is to kick start my writing, even if I don't succeed.

For those unfamiliar with what I'm talking about, November is considered National Novel Writing Month, and for most people that equates to a fun challenge of writing an entire novel throughout the month of November. 50,000 words is the minimum amount of words to be considered as a complete novel during this challenge, and there are many people who (somehow) manage to generate much more than that. Still others have gone on from that challenge to clean up those messy first-draft novels and publish them. Erin Morgenstern's The Night Circus comes immediately to mind.

So why would anyone be crazy enough to write a novel in a month? Well, I'm glad you asked. Here are my top reasons for wanting to do it:

1. To give my writing a good kick in the pants.
2. To have some accountability. If I tell everyone I'm writing a novel, and this website tracks it, then everyone will know where I'm at with that. (And they can see that I'm currently VERY behind!)
3. To tell the internal editor to go on an extended vacation. There's nothing worse than the doubting, critical, "You'll never amount to anything" voice in your head trying to crush your dreams.You just don't have time for that person when you have such a tight deadline.
4. To simulate a tight deadline. Many people produce under tons of pressure, myself included.
And, most important of all...
5. To have some FUN!!!

Hopefully you get to experience this for one of those reasons above, or for your own personal ones. Now get out there and write that novel. There's still time to jump in!


  1. I'm right there with you George, using the month to tackle 50k of my current manuscript. I hope you've still got steam going with the first week wrapping up!

    I find NaNoWriMo serves as an awesome means to very quickly diagnose problems as a writer and problems with the story. When you hit roadblocks and snares other times, you can put it down and walk away. With NaNo, you've got that word count quota, so you need to figure it out now. Having a problem with this chapter? Figure it out. Having a problem with this character? Figure it out. It's like when your kid is sick and you bring them to the doctor, but all the symptoms disappear for that ten minute visit. NaNoWriMo has the doctor moving in to live with you for a month. He'll find the symptoms, diagnose them, and fix them.

    1. I agree wholeheartedly with everything you said. I'll add one other caveat. The goal is to write 50,000 words. If part of those words involves you putting down notes for yourself on how to fix something later, so be it.

  2. I like the fact that it's very freeing. If you don't like something, note it and move on. If you make a mistake, note it and move on. You don't have to be coherent. You don't have to know where everything goes. You don't have to write things in order. You don't have to do ANYTHING except write.