Tomorrow is the beginning of National Novel Writing Month or nanowrimo, as it has come to be known. Don’t let the word “novel” throw you off, because all you need to do is write 50,000 words between Nov. 1st and Nov. 30th and you win. There’s no one judging the quality of what you write.
The idea behind it is that many of us (*cough* meaning me *cough*) don’t finish things because we start editing and criticizing and picking apart our writing until we give up in despair. But if you have a goal of writing 50,000 words in 30 days, you don’t have time for that. You have to keep going. Yes, you could do that in any 30-day period, but the beauty of NanoWriMo is that you’ve got thousands of Internet strangers trying to win it too. On the NanoWriMo site, you can meet writing buddies, ask a question in a forum, and read pep talks when you feel like you can’t go on.
I participated back in 2012 and got ~7500 words into a novel and then got sidetracked. Funny thing is I can’t even remember what distracted me– job stuff? Illness? My teenager? I had a plan of finishing that book but it never happened.
Anyway… it’s 2015 and I have a different idea for a novel and I’m going to do this. I have a main character, villians, a conflict, and a sociopathic parrot. I have some idea of the plot. That’s it. No world building, no deep examination of everybody’s inner life and the top five motivators and a detailed map of the setting. Of course there are good reasons to outline your book, but I find I get overwhelmed by trying to create the perfect plan. So this year, I’m going without one. Wish me luck!
I took this photo. Please don’t use it without my permission. Thanks!