Sunday, October 31, 2010

NaNoWriMo Wha-aat?

Some of you may notice the new widget on the sidebar.

This is for NaNoWriMo. For the uninitiated, this stands for National Novel Writing Month. Every November, writers from around the globe come together between November 1st and November 30th in an attempt to write 50,000 words each, pretty much the length of a novel. (Unless you are Diana Gabaldon, and then it's more of a prologue.)

"Thirty days and nights of literary abandon!" is our rallying cry. The idea is to let the writing flow without getting overly obsessive over quality. You may end up with complete crap, or you may find that partway through, you've hit the writers' equivalent of the sweet spot. It doesn't matter. What matters is getting the words on the page.

In order to add your name to the list of "winners" you must complete 50,000 words by the end of the month.

I know.

I know.

It may be the craziest thing I've done for a long time. (Except for maybe...nah. That was crazier.) And of course, it would coincide with my decision to give up coffee. (Eleven days and counting.) You are encouraged to start afresh with a new idea, not to rework an old manuscript. I've got to focus and decide which idea I'm going to run with, starting tomorrow.

Actually, midnight. As in, tonight.

The point is to let your creative mind run naked and free into that golden field of barley and allow yourself to feel the warmth of the sun upon your metaphorical face, and to ignore that niggly feeling that says hey, the farmer next door just stumbled out of the woods looking for his lost dog and is now staring open-mouthed upon your big pale rump.

Wish me luck! If I'm posting on my blog less frequently, it's because,

a) I'm writing obsessively.

b) I'm sucking my thumb in a corner asking myself "Why, oh why did I agree to do this?"

To quote Yoda, "Do, or do not. There is no try."

edited to add: I just began in my usual fashion, not by writing an outline but by avoidance i.e., cleaning off my desk. I just removed a large T.G. Green bowl filled with loose change, old receipts and the usual flotsam and jetsam, and what is resting on top of the pile? A box of Imodium and an Air Canada barf bag. A sign?


Julie K said...

Go, do - you'll rock it, I know it!

Best advice I've heard - if you're on a roll, keep writing. If you've hit your goal for the day but your brain wants to keep writing, keep writing. Don't let those ideas get away! It'll set you up for those days where your brain rebels and doesn't want to write at all.

You can do it! Go, go, go!!

A Novel Woman said...

That's what I'm afraid of, my brain rebelling and flipping me the finger then high-tailing it to the nearest bar where it will anesthetize itself with martinis and refuse to come home.

Damn brain...I want to just whack it upside the head sometimes.

nightsmusic said...

My brain has been anesthetized for months now, but I signed up for NaNo anyway.


You'd think I'd have learned the first time since I am the queen of procrastination.

But I am determined!

So, I'm cheering you on. You can do this. In fact, I'm pretty sure you're more likely to do this than I am.

Debby said...

It's only right the Novel Woman write a novel, right?

A Novel Woman said...

NM, are you kidding me? I'm still cleaning up my desk. Good luck to you!

Debby...that's it exactly.

Malcolm R. Campbell said...

Best of luck with the wild and crazy writing. No thinking or pondering allowed. Writing, that's all. Perhaps it will be one heck of a lot of fun, too.

I hope so. I also signed up for NaNoWriMo.


Anonymous said...

I've known two people who have taken the challenge of NaNoWriMo. My stepdaughter did this a couple years ago. Last year one of my blogging friends from Toronto did it. Now I can say I know three people who have done it (or are doing it). Good luck!

A Novel Woman said...

Malcolm, I have to keep reminding myself of this rule. I have an inner critic that paralyzes me sometimes. So the whole point is to just write, write, write and NOT over think or plan at all. That's what I'm going to do. I've been mulling some ideas in my head, but come midnight, I'm diving in, eyes closed 'till I hit the water.

Thanks Linda!

Laura Bradbury said...

Go Pam! I promised myself I wouldn't start anything new until I actually FINISHED one of the 3 MSs I have on my computerr at present. Maybe next year!

Bonne chance! I can't wait to read all about it.