For those who didn’t know, National Novel Writing Month is an annual, Internet-based creative writing project that takes place during the month of November. NaNoWriMo challenges participants to write 50,000 words (their minimum number of words for a novel) from November 1 until the deadline at 11:59PM on November 30. The goal of NaNoWriMo is to get people writing and keep them motivated throughout the process. There’s no limit on how many people can win!
The website provides participants with tips for writer’s block, local places writers participating in NaNoWriMo are meeting, and an online community of support. The idea is to focus on completion instead of perfection. NaNoWriMo focuses on the length of a work rather than the quality, encouraging writers to finish their first draft so that it can later be edited at the author’s discretion. NaNoWriMo’s main goal is to encourage creativity worldwide. The project started in July 1999 with 21 participants, but by the 2010 event, over 200,000 people took part and wrote a total of over 2.8 billion words.
Writers wishing to participate first register on the project’s website, where they can post profiles and information about their novels, including synopses and excerpts. Word counts are validated on the site, with writers submitting a copy of their novel for automatic counting. Municipal leaders and regional forums help connect local writers, holding writing events and providing encouragement.
National Novel Writing Month has become international many years ago. A thing I haven’t known for many years is that you’re welcome to write in the language you’re most comfortable with, not necessarily English how I had been thinking!
I joined this year. These are my details, if someone is willing to add me as buddy:
I used to say that I don’t believe in NaNoWriMo: I don’t do NaNo per se because I think it is a reason to motivate yourself to finish what you start. And I have done it several times, without the deadline of one month. I have written (in my mother tongue) stories between 19,500 and 203,500 words. I can do better without the stress of a deadline more. I have enough of it at work. Why hurry? If there was the prize of publishing the story for free, yes, this was an incentive. But just to show I can – I can do it any time of the year, taking as long as necessary.
However, the support groups, I think they are wonderful for any kind of writing/ writers. I wish there would be more of them all year long. I have taken part in some, even if my writings weren’t destined to be a NaNo novel, but the regular posts for my interactive story Before the Mast. I availed myself of the writing sprints the RPG resource sites organised, to write more posts, to write quicker and better. I used the prompts for new ideas. I used every November to open a new Word file for everything I wrote then, without ever joining the NaNo site, and to collect them the whole month, just to know how much I write, and I always got to something around 42,000, give and take a couple thousands.
I might still not believe in NaNoWriMo; but I believe in challenging myself, and this November I need it. I need to focus on something creative, literary, to achieve something and to measure my success. So it is well. I can write at least 1,667 words/ day for 30 days. I wouldn’t finish the novel, because I am not a person to write as concisely as 50,000 words/ novel. Mine are always much more.
I will be writing a spin-off of “Before the Mast”, using only my characters and the NPCs I have created. So, swashbuckling adventures at sea, but not following the plot of the site. Who would expect a pirate captain and a pirate hunter mercenary would become sworn brothers? Of course it is possible, but only in unique circumstances… which will start unfolding during November. 🙂 I have also the title – “The price of freedom“. Pirates consider them free at sea because they have no allegiance. But this freedom has a price of blood…
I have planned writing this novel for a long time; I need NaNoWriMo’s kick-off in order to actually start doing it. And once started… I always finish what I start.
I also need the support group. I have always looked for a group of similarly-minded people. I am glad that I attended the first meeting and that we had found each other, with questions, answers and resource sharing.
This above is the draft cover. And some day I’ll quote, for those who read Romanian, fragments of it… For now, I have only a few chapters outlined.