Monday, October 16, 2006

A Whole Novel In One Month?

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.

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.

If you think that sounds crazy, you're right. It is. But so am I. I'm also susceptible to dares of the 'what are you, a yellow-bellied coward?' type. When Stephen Blackmoore challenged me to join this insane collection of writing maniacs, I raged internally against the idea for a couple of days, but then he put up a bottle of 12 yr old Springbank.

I couldn't say no to that.

Since I'm only five thousand words into a novel, I've decided to make it my project for this wild gig. But don't worry, I won't include what I've already written.

If you're interested in tracking my progress through November, here's my NaNoWriMo profile. I'll probably throw up a word counter on this blog too, but hey, if I link to the profile it makes this whole damn ballgame real.

NaNoWriMo. It's so crazy, it just might work.


Mary said...

I like challenges, go for it!

Daniel Hatadi said...

Yes, I know you like challenges, you driven woman, you. ;)

Jim Winter said...

I did it last year, and the results surprised me. I thought I'd written utter crap, but the book held up quite well.

I think it's because it forces you to focus.

OTOH, I don't think I'll ever do that again.

Stephen Blackmoore said...

It can be a great kick in the ass. Sure, 50K in a month might be utter crap, but then so is the rough draft of anything.

I'm already 20K into what I've been working on. Hoping to use this to force me a little more throughout November.

And hey, you offered me paint stripper. With an incentive like that how can I possibly not do this?

Daniel Hatadi said...

Jim, I haven't even started and I already think I won't do it again. But you're right about focus: I'm using these next two weeks to plan my arse off.

Stephen, this is gonna be a helluva ride. And it will definitely stop us bothing futzing around for months on end. Revision's going to be pretty interesting, though.

Sandra Ruttan said...

Hey, this is great! Because I want to see both of you published soon!

Seriously, first book first draft, I just concentrating on finishing and having it make sense, obviously. I didn't worry about whether it was any good.

That's what edits are for. But it's a confidence boost when you've got something down!

anne frasier said...

i completely agree with jim about the focus.

good luck, guys!!