|Image courtesy of National Novel Writing Month|
Well it's that time of year again. That time of year where people who are of a certain level of insanity are gearing up to spend the month of November doing an insane and, to some, impossible thing: NaNoWriMo.
Now, for those of you who may not be familiar with that acronym it stands for National Novel Writing Month and it takes place every November. Their It is a nonprofit organization that is aimed at letting people get their stories out in the world. It aims at building a community that supports one another and that allows people from all over the world to connect over this insanely beautiful thing. Their mascot is a viking and their people are called Wrimos. The objective: to write 50,000 words between November 1-30. You read that right, FIFTY THOUSAND! There are some fabulous prizes from the sponsors of NaNo and a sense of accomplishment when you cross that 50,000 word finish line (in case you're wondering, that's an average of 1,667 words per day to win).
But the prizes are not why people do NaNoWriMo. There is no guarantee of publication or that the story that is written will ever make it past the NaNo stage. But that isn't the point of doing it. The point is bang out 50,000 words in 30 days and to not worry about the quality of words that you're writing, but the quantity. After all, every writer's first draft is a shitty one (even J.K. Rowling and Steven King...it's a fact).
I've participated in NaNo since 2011 and I have won the last three years. I have learned a lot about myself as a writer in participating in NaNo and I have learned a lot about the process of writing. The website has a lot of helpful tips and tricks and forums that will answer any and all questions you may have.
We Wrimos are a crazy bunch. We may spend the month of November tapping furiously away at the keys of our computers. We may keep ourselves cracked out on caffeine in the hopes that it will substitute for the sleep we lose. And we may let our personal hygiene slip for the weeks of November because showering can take away from valuable writing time. And we don't do it because we want the glory or because we think that we will become insta-authors overnight because we wrote a novel in a month. We do it because we love to write and we love to share our love of writing with other lovers of writing. The month of November is emotional: we laugh, we cry, we scream. But at the end of it all, it's worth it because we are putting stories out in the world. And the world could always use more stories.
For more information about this event: nanowrimo.org