November is upon us, and writers out there are
chanting, “Nano, Nano!”
If you haven’t heard, November is National Write a Novel Month. The
website/group challenges authors to write a 50,000-word book in just thirty
days. What? How can this be done? Well, with 1,667 words a day, you too can
write a novel in a month. Okay, let me back up.
National Write a Novel Month is, at its base, a
challenge to write—to put pen to paper, fingers to keyboard, pencil to
cardboard, and dash out a whole book quickly. It started over twenty years ago
with a small group of authors challenging each other to finish a book in a
month. It’s grown
widely over the years. Now with upwards of half a million people participating,
the community and contest have become a part of the writing community
NaNoWriMo is touted as a contest, with those hitting
the 50k goal deemed “winners.”
What do you win? A set of coupons and some digital pics for your social media.
What? That’s it for writing an entire book? The point of the
site/forums/contest is to get people writing and support them throughout the drafting
of a novel.
Rules (if you choose to comply…) are as follows: You must start a new project on November
1st and write at least 1,667 words each day. No cheating. No reworking old
work. No editing old work. Nothing but fresh words on the same project all
month. If you be a rebel, none of the rules apply.
What can you write? Anything and everything, as long
as it’s the same project. Or not, if you rebel. You can enter word counts on
the website to track your progress. You can also team up with friends through Buddies
or find local writers through your region and forums.
If the rules don’t matter and the points don’t count (I say in a Drew Carey
voice) then what’s the point? Writing, community, and resources are the point.
NaNoWriMo gets the writer off the couch, at the workstation, and writing with
tons of support.