Wednesday, October 29, 2008

NaNoWriMo, Anyone?

Anyone else up to the NaNoWriMo challenge this year? Photobucket

National Novel Writing Month kicks off November 1st. It's an intense month with the goal of writing 50,000 words (yes, you read that right: Fifty Thousand words) in 30 days. It comes down to 1667 words a day, a bit less than 7 pages.

This is the tenth anniversary of NaNoWriMo. It started with 21 participants, most of whom knew each other from the onset and lived near each other. Six made it to 50,000 words. In 2007, over 100,000 people participated from countries all over the world. By midnight November 30, 2007, over 15,000 of them had turned in the magic number of 50K words.

Here's the scary part. You start with a blank page.

funny pictures

This is not a time to pick up an older novel and rewrite it. This is for a fresh idea, a new challenge. A new book by the end of November. Some people come into NaNoWriMo with an outline, character sketches, scads of research completed. Others come in with a vague idea, put hands on the keyboard, and start writing. Both systems lead to results including sales of books written in rough draft during NaNoWriMo.

The goal is to write. Don't edit. Write.


Yes, it's a raw rough draft. Yes, you'll write a lot of garbage. But this is not the time to get mired down in "the plot doesn't work" and "my character's an idiot." Don't go back and reread what you wrote the day before. Just keep writing. You can fix it later.

Yes, November is a busy month. But you know the cliche about busy people. "If you want something done..." I've set myself daily writing goals with at least four pages on the busy days and nearly triple that on the less busy days. I'm cleaning my house this week (also because our kids are coming to visit on Friday). Next week I'll make some double meals, with one going into the freezer for November. I'll also stock things that can be cooked in the crock pot and pre-made frozen entrees.

If you want to take the challenge, here's where you can find out more at NaNoWriMo. If you sign up or have signed up, I'm registered under Betty.Glasgow.Hanawa, if you want to be my buddy.

As far as what I'm going to write... well, I'm one of those heading into November 1 with a vague idea and some research done. But having written Turquoise Dreams in this way, I think I can do it again.

Will I make the 50K? I've told so many people about it, I'll be embarrassed if I don't. I just need to keep myself from getting distracted.

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