Oh $h*t, It’s NaNoWriMo Time Again

Posted on October 25, 2010


NaNoWriMo is almost upon up, that crazy month in November when participants try to write 50,000 words in a month. I’ve tried to do it for the past two years, and failed miserably and early in my attempts. But I really like the idea of NaNoWriMo – the daily writing habit that it requires, the motivation and community it provides, the emphasis on writing first, editing later … much later. All things that I struggle with that I get to focus on for one month.

But back to my failed attempts. In 2008, November happened to be the month we were moving from San Francisco to central Pennsylvania, which turned out to be a bad time to write a “novel” with no discernible plot or shape. I learned that driving cross country is not conducive to writing a book for me.

In 2009, November happened to be the month I started a new job, so I was busy struggling with getting up early and ironing and dressing myself. It took about a week to realize that 50,000 words was not going to happen.

This year, I’m hoping to have more success. There are a few things in my favor:

  • I actually have a story idea! And it’s one with enough substance and action to write 50k words about.
  • I’ve started talking about it. To people not in my head. So I’m hoping it creates some accountability.

Things that are not looking so good:

  • I’m still me. And I happen to excel at procrastinating and making excuses. In fact, I could probably writing a 50,000 word excuse for my life circumstances before I could finish a short story.
  • We’re hosting Thanksgiving this year for the first time for family in our first home. So I’ll likely find “projects” around the house to work on.

But I’m committing to finishing NaNoWriMo this year. This week is pre-season, and I’m hoping to spend some time each day writing about 500 words a day about anything and then outlining my story.

Posted in: writing