OK, last year one of my goals was to participate in NaNoWriMo – which is shorthand for the National Novel Writing Month. The goal is to write a novel … in a month:
National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to creative writing. On November 1, participants begin working towards the goal of writing a 50,000-word novel by 11:59 p.m. on November 30. Valuing enthusiasm, determination, and a deadline, NaNoWriMo is for anyone who has ever thought fleetingly about writing a novel.
Anyway, last year I set it out as something I wanted to do … but I was never really particularly committed, as I didn’t do any prework and just sat there the first week of November thinking … ok, what do I want to write about? Not exactly a recipe for success!
For this year I had planned to take the sketches I started and form them into real ideas: character studies, chapter frameworks, relationship graphs and so on. But then the reality of what my work travel was going to be like sank in, and I put NaNoWriMo to the side … and never came back when the travel ended.
What does it matter? Well, back in high school I did a fair amount of creative writing, and at the urging of one teacher (Mr. McLellan) I submitted a story to The Atlantic. It wasn’t accepted, but as we moved from MA to NY I found some of my writing again and thought it would be fun to take it up again. Then I found out about NaNoWriMo, and was intrigued.
So NaNoWriMo is pretty much out of the picture for me this year as a fully realized project, but I plan to hook in and get back to work on laying some of the groundwork for the larger scale ideas in my head. Maybe I will get to the end and it will be crap, or perhaps it will actually be worth reading. Who knows … I just know it is an thought that has been bouncing around in my head long enough that it deserves attention.
How about you – had you heard of NaNoWriMo? Any plans to try your hand at writing a novel?