National Novel Month is upon us. At the stroke of midnight millions of fingers will descend upon tons of keyboards. I can already hear the din of the digits from those countries that have already crossed over to November 1st. Don’t know what Nanowrimo is? It is a challenge to write a 50,000 word novel in the month of November with the only reward at the end being a sense of accomplishment and perhaps a usable first draft.
The Nanowrimo community is creatively invigorating. From the online forums and in-person write-ins to simply seeing the bar on your word count chart go ever higher. I credit Nanowrimo with giving me that kickstart I needed and also the confidence to realize that not only do I have a novel (or six) in me, but I have the wherewithal to get it out. The skill comes later. Nanowrimo is not about skill. If it was, you would never be able to pound out 50,000 words in a month.
For four consecutive Nanowrimo seasons I signed up and won, promptly putting the finished manuscript “in the drawer.” I tried several times to edit what I had written, but without any sense of how I would begin I gave up.
Last October I attended the Emerald City Writers Conference and that gave me the kick in the butt that I needed to make my Nanowrimo novel 2011 my first release. Thanks Cherry Adair! Nanowrimo gave me the push I needed to write. The conference gave me the push I needed to finish.
Now I can, without guilt, say that I am not doing Nanowrimo this year. And that is because I have a novella and another full length novel being released in November and December and writing is no longer an annual event. It is a part of who I am and there is no going back.
I wish all you Nano-ers good luck this month! How many of you are taking the plunge?