Taking the NaNoWriMo Challenge

NaNoWriMoI’ve finally done it, I’ve signed up for this year’s NaNoWriMo! “Nano what?” you may be asking.  NaNoWriMo celebrates November as national novel writing month, and challenges writers from around the world to write a novel of at least 50,000 words in 30 days.  You “win” if you upload your novel with at least 50,000 words to their site (don’t worry those of you concerned about someone making off with your creative baby, it’s just to verify completion of the task) by the end of the month, from scratch.

Everyone who completes their novel wins. How great is that? It really is a celebration of creativity, the art of writing, and creating community, but there are a few rules (from the NaNoWriMo site):

  • Write a 50,000-word (or longer!) novel, between November 1 and November 30.
  • Start from scratch. None of your own previously written prose can be included in your NaNoWriMo draft (though outlines, character sketches, and research are all fine, as are citations from other people’s works).
  • Write a novel. We define a novel as a lengthy work of fiction. If you consider the book you’re writing a novel, [the folks at NaNoWriMo] consider it a novel too!
  • Be the sole author of your novel. Apart from those citations mentioned two bullet-points up.
  • Write more than one word repeated 50,000 times.
  • Upload your novel for word-count validation to [the NaNoWriMo] site between November 25 and November 30.

What do you win? A certificate of your accomplishment, eternal recognition on their website and a site badge you can add to your website. More importantly you gain the satisfaction of knowing you completed a 50K word novel!

I’ve been meaning to at least sign up for 3 years now, but never did. I’m not sure how far I’ll get, but I’m excited to try. I don’t yet even have a story idea and the first day is halfway over! But the point IMO is not to “win” (there are several thousand “winners” each year) nor it is the main point to finish. The point, for me at least, is to start.

Ready! Set! Write!!!

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