Contemplating NaNoWriMo

As the end of October approaches, I have been thinking seriously about trying my hand at NaNoWriMo this year. For those of you who aren’t familiar with it, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, which is held every November. The basic idea is that participants are supposed to set a goal of writing 50,000 words (the generally accepted approxamite length of a commercial novel) between the 1st and the 30th of the month.  More details about it can be found at the official website, nanowrimo.org.

The very idea is a bit daunting. It means writing an average of 1,667 words per day, assuming no days are skipped, and still having to fit in a full time job, eating, sleeping, and spending time with the family. While not impossible, there’s a reason why this isn’t held every month and writers all over the world aren’t cranking out 12 novels a year with ease. It’s something that certainly will take a lot of self-discipline and support from family and friends. Those of you who fit into that last category, please do not be surprised if I seem to have vanished from the face of the Earth during November. It’s nothing personal. I’ll just be spending more time with my computer than with real people. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to complete this venture successfully, but I really want to give it a try.

For all of my followers here on Scott’s World, please be prepared for the possibility of an extended hiatus on new posts. When I began this blog my intention was to make at least one new post a week. I haven’t kept up with that as well as I’d like, but fortunately I haven’t missed it by too much, either. During November I intend to continue to make blog entries even while working on my NaNoWriMo project, but I’m telling you right now that I will make no guarantees. Just please don’t unfollow Scott’s World if there seems to be a lack of posts for a while.

That all being said, what I really need to decide between now and November is what I want to write. It will assuredly be science fiction, as that’s my primary genre for creative writing, and I have no shortage of story ideas. What I am concerned about with this project is that I will find myself having the same dilemma I have had in the past while writing short stories. I have a tendency to be really good at writing the beginning of a tale, but then I end up abandoning the work because I can’t come up with a good way to finish it. If any other writers out there have had similar problems, I’d be interested in hearing how you’ve overcome them.

Wish me luck!

“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

Advertisements

6 thoughts on “Contemplating NaNoWriMo

  1. I think NaNo is a great way to get in the habit of just sitting down and writing without worrying about anything but word count. Pay no mind to spelling, grammar, or even laying out the story in a beginning-to-end format, because you will go back and clean everything up later. I tend to edit as I write, which makes NaNoWriMo a huge challenge for me, so I’m thinking about doing a 30 day blogging challenge instead, since I know that is more within my capabilities.

    As for coming up with a good way to finish a story, NaNo might give you the opportunity to write several possible endings, each more outlandish than the last, and then use the one you like when you go back and polish your work. The purpose of NaNoWriMo is not to have a gorgeous, ready-to-publish work on December 1st, it’s to motivate you to squeeze all the words from your brain into a big messy pile so that all you have to do is chip away the excess to find the masterpiece within.

    I say go for it! And good luck!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I’d say you’re very courageous to take on the challenge head first. I want to write a novel myself, but I don’t get the time. I hope someday I have enough courage to take up this challenge and write a huge chunk of text which I can refine the story from later.
    Good luck with it!

    Like

  3. While I am a huge fan of fiction, especially SF/F, I am not a novelist. What I am is a nonfiction writer (with a few fictional ideas floating around in my head). So, I’ve signed up for the Nonfiction counterpart — NaNonFiWriMo (national nonfiction writing month) or WNFIN (Write NonFiction In November). I don’t have the link with me, but you can google WNFIN and it will be one of the top results shown.

    Whatever program works for you, go for it!

    — Tim Gatewood
    http://notarymemphis.wordpress.com and
    http://timgatewood.files.wordpress.com

    Like

    • Yes. Thank you for asking. I began my novel yesterday afternoon as planned. I completed 2,989 words on my first day, so I’m ahead of schedule so far. I’m excited to get back to the computer this evening after work.

      The thing I found the hardest to do was with regard to self-editing. Everything I have read about Nanowrimo has said to not edit at all, but rather just let the words flow out and leave the editing for later. I have a hard time with that. I’d probably be further than 2,989 words but I did spend some time making some edits and adjustments along the way.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s