Monday, October 27, 2008
The November Decision
There are many things to consider in the month of November. Will my vote for change mean anything? Well, why not cast a vote for something that will really mean something after Election Day? Why not fight for a cause that you can believe in? My fellow Americans and the smattering of individuals who may have stumbled upon this humble blog from parts outside of the continental United States, why don’t you make the decision to write a novel in November?
Oh yeah, baby, Nanowrimo is back! National Novel Writing Month is, in 2008, “Celebrating 10 years of Literary Abandon”. And that’s a beautiful thing.
Check it out for yourself here: http://www.nanowrimo.org/. Click around for all the gory details. It boils down to writing a 50,000 word novel beginning on November 1st and ending on November 30th; …that’s about 175 pages. If you’ve ever wanted to write a novel NOW is the time. It’s doable. I kid you not.
The following is from their web site and I quote, “National Novel Writing Month is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing. Participants begin writing November 1. The goal is to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30.
Valuing enthusiasm and perseverance over painstaking craft, NaNoWriMo is a novel-writing program for everyone who has thought fleetingly about writing a novel but has been scared away by the time and effort involved.
Because of the limited writing window, the ONLY thing that matters in NaNoWriMo is output. It's all about quantity, not quality. The kamikaze approach forces you to lower your expectations, take risks, and write on the fly.
Make no mistake: You will be writing a lot of crap. And that's a good thing. By forcing yourself to write so intensely, you are giving yourself permission to make mistakes. To forgo the endless tweaking and editing and just create. To build without tearing down.
As you spend November writing, you can draw comfort from the fact that, all around the world, other National Novel Writing Month participants are going through the same joys and sorrows of producing the Great Frantic Novel. Wrimos meet throughout the month to offer encouragement, commiseration, and—when the thing is done—the kind of raucous celebrations that tend to frighten animals and small children.
In 2007, we had over 100,000 participants. More than 15,000 of them crossed the 50k finish line by the midnight deadline, entering into the annals of NaNoWriMo superstardom forever. They started the month as auto mechanics, out-of-work actors, and middle school English teachers. They walked away novelists.
So, to recap:
What: Writing one 50,000-word novel from scratch in a month's time.
Who: You! We can't do this unless we have some other people trying it as well. Let's write laughably awful yet lengthy prose together.
Why: The reasons are endless! To actively participate in one of our era's most enchanting art forms! To write without having to obsess over quality. To be able to make obscure references to passages from our novels at parties. To be able to mock real novelists who dawdle on and on, taking far longer than 30 days to produce their work.
When: You can sign up anytime to add your name to the roster and browse the forums. Writing begins November 1. To be added to the official list of winners, you must reach the 50,000-word mark by November 30 at midnight. Once your novel has been verified by our web-based team of robotic word counters, the partying begins.”
Gentle Reader, it’s time for a change – a change in you from being a non-novelist to a novelist. Trust me, this November that may be the only thing you can count on.
I’m Evil Chicken and I support this Blog.