November 1st it’s exactly a week away and this wouldn’t be a writing blog if I didn’t touch on a subject that some, maybe most, writers know about. What is that? The craziness of NaNoWriMo, of course!
NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month and it’s an event that happens every November, from the 1st to the 30th, a whole month of writing to get to a common goal: To write a 50,000 (50K) words novel in 30 days. Crazy? Probably…
The idea behind this event is that you can prove to yourself that no matter how busy your life is, no matter if you plot your novel before hand o go about it just with an idea at the beginning of the month, you can write a 50,000 words novel in 30 days.
Some will say “50,000 words a novel does not make” but I can tell what they do make. They make a rough first draft, they make 50,000 words you didn’t have before, they make you into the habit of writing every day, they put you in the right track to be a good writer.
I’m not saying the novel you write on NaNoWriMo it’s going to end up being perfect and you can publish it at the end of the month. There is a lot to do to that first draft before you can even fathom the idea of sending it to a publisher or even showing it to beta readers.
Don’t get discourage for that little bit. No first draft of a manuscript ever gets to be seeing by other than the writer itself. The reason for that is that you write, in NaNoWriMo, for quantity, not for quality. You do not look back, you do not correct typos, you do not revise if you misspell something, you do not go about looking if sentences makes sence… You Write!
It’s a very hard endeavour, for sure, to shut up your inner editor, that little voice inside your head that can’t stop being negative about you doing this: you writing the story that only you can write, because only you know the story that it’s in your head. It doesn’t have to be a novel! It can be a play, a collection of short stories, a screen-play, anything that means you want to write it out of you.
The beauty of doing this in November it’s that you are not alone. There are tons of seasonal writer and new writers participating every year, all around the world. You hop on Faceboo, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, Pinterest, Youtube, etc… wherever you go, you type NaNoWriMo and you will find someone willing to help with your doubts, give you pep talks when you need one and so on…
Go to the NaNoWriMo.Org website. Sign in… it’s free and put the data of the novel idea you have in mind, make friends, get to meet new people online and offline, because they do have writing events, so you will probably get to have one near you and you can drop by and experience something unlike anything else.
You want to participate and don’t know how to prep? Go to the NaNo-Prep part of their website and you will find tons of information. Other fellow writers give advice during the month, all you need it’s the commitment and the will to go for it. Anyone can do it, you just have stop second guessing yourself, just do it.
Some books that were first drafts during NaNoWriMo:
- Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, published by Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill
- The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, published by Doubleday
- Persistence of Memory by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes, published by Delacorte Press
- Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, published by St. Martin’s Press
- Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins, published by Dutton Juvenile
- The Darwin Elevator by Jason M. Hough, published by Del Rey Books
- The Night We Said Yes by Lauren Gibaldi, published by HarperTeen
Books that are great to read for writing:
- No Plot? No Problem! by Cris Baty (Paperback)
- Surviving First Drafts by Erica Crouch (Kindle)
- 2,000 to 10,000. Writing faster by Rachel Aaron (Kindle)
- How to Write a Novel by Nathan Bransford (Kindle)
- Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maass (Kindle)
- Outlining your novel by K.M. Weiland (Kindle)
- Story Engineering by Larry Brooks (Kindle)
- The Writer’s Journey by Christopher Vogler (Paperback)
- Save the Cat by Blake Snyder (Kindle)
- On Writing by Stephen King (Kindle)
- Plot and Structure by James Scott Bell (Kindle)
Youtube Channels to watch during NaNoWrimo (and the rest of the year too):
- Nanowrimo ~ Go Here
- M. Kirin ~ Go Here
- Katytastic ~ Go Here
- Wordnerds ~ Go Here
- Erica Crouch ~ Go Here
- Kelli Sheridan ~ Go Here
- E. Latimer ~ Go Here
- Burgess Taylor ~ Go Here
- Mandi Lynn ~ Go Here
- Writing Mime ~ Go Here
- Jenna Moreci ~ Go Here
- Elizabeth Writes ~ Go Here
Am I participating in NaNoWriMo this year?
To be sort, yes… I am participating this year. It’s going to be a real challenge because I start my finals at university the 26th of November until the 22nd of December and I have November to study for all of those finals… So…
What I’m going to be writing? That it’s still to be seeing, why? Because I have this contemporary romance in my brain since April and this paranormal crazy as fuck series since November last year going around in my brain too. So it’s kind of hard to pick one.
I may be totally crazy and do both, a little bit of each and adding to my word count, but honestly I think I will side with the contemporary more. Why? Because the other it’s a huge series, the background and world it’s not build to my understanding and I worry, ok? Those are my babies we are talking about (and yes, I said babies), and even thou I have a small outline for the first book I need to make sure I don’t mess up their lives by writing something that it’s not happening.
Still… we are a week away from the 1st of November, who know what may happen. Perhaps one of my babies will have a stronger voice that the character of the contemporary story and so I will go with that one.
So… Are you in? Are you going to write your story in November with all of us? I can asure you, the commitement and the strong will to reach the end it’s what will help you the most. For all the rest, we have each other 🙂
If you have any question or want to have a writing buddy, you can leave me a comment here. Find me on the NaNoWriMo website under the nickname LadyElizabeth24. Add me there as a writing buddy, we can talk all you want. Also you can get a hold of me on Twitter under the same nickname @ladyelizabeth24 and of course Instagram or Pinterest, all of them under the same nickname 😛
Use the hashtag #NaNoWriMo, and tag in your social media posts.
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