NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, and according to the internet it is this:
“An annual Internet-based creative writing project that takes place during the month of November. Participants attempt to write a 50,000-word manuscript between November 1 and November 30.”
Basically, you try to write a novel in a month. It’s a challenge, it’s a process, it’s fun and it’s starting very soon. You can read all about it here.
I’ll be honest with you; when I was first introduced to the concept in 2018, I spent half that year thinking, “What the hell is the point?” Just write what you want, when you want to, right? What’s the deal with setting aside a month to do this specifically?
I figured if you’re a writer, you’re going to be writing whenever you write anyway, so why is this any different? What is it that makes people want to do this?
But then I did it myself, and I was sold.
My approach is a little bit different, because of how I ended up doing it in 2018. Basically, I ended up being off work for a week in November, so instead of spending the entire month, I tried to write a book in a week. You can check out how that went here.
What I ended up with was a 40,000 word novella, and I realized that NaNoWriMo is the perfect break in my regular scheduled writing, be it editing, revising, or drafting, and it’s perfect to write novellas.
Last year, I ended up rewriting something I had started before, and wrote a 27,000 word novella. You can read about that here. NaNo is perfect for this. Sure, write a 50k novel if you want, or do something else like me, but the point is that it’s great to take a break from what you’re doing normally and just try something else. Also, the fact that much of the rest of the writing world is doing it at the same time, is really motivating. On the official website, you can even make an account and keep up with your friends and see how they’re doing. I’ve never tried it, but it sounds like great fun.
NaNoWriMo is perfect for taking a break from your regular writing.
I’m planning on writing another novella this year. It’s a story that came to me when I was in Helsinki last September, just walking around a grocery store behind my wife as she was browsing around, and it all just fell into my head. I knew right then that it would have to be my next NaNoWriMo project.
This year, I’m going to be super prepared – and super excited. Bring it on!