November is National Novel Writing Month!

National Novel Writing MonthApparently I’m a few days late in posting this (sorry folks, the cold/flu that’s had me down and out for the last few days was responsible for unsightly delay), but November 1st marked the start of National Novel Writing Month, also known as NaNoWriMo.

NaNoWriMo, a creative writing event held every November, has been around for several years. For those of you who might be looking for a little background information about it, you can check the official site’s description here, or there’s always Wikipedia’s take on the event. What it boils down to is that every participant is attempting to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by the end of the event (midnight on November 30th.) Anyone who reaches these lofty goals is considered a “winner”, though no official prizes are ever handed out. As of 2007, there were over 100,000 participants in the event, which has grown rapidly since its inception.

If you’re interested in participating, Wired Magazine’s Geekdad blog has a few tips for you, Fiction Writing‘s Ginny Wiehardt has some advice for prospective participants, and well-known fantasy and sci-fi author Neil Gaiman gallantly offered a pep talk (it’s from last year, but what the hell) over on the event’s official web site.

While NaNoWriMo doesn’t really jive particularly well with Protagonize’s collaborative theme — they disallow collaborative works from being entered (as well as works-in-progress) — it’s a well-known and respected event that is probably of interest to many of you. I know for a fact that several die-hard Protagonize authors have participated in the event in the past, and at least one of you is working on it again this year. To those of you participating, good luck! And make sure to let us know how your novels turn out. :)

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3 Responses to November is National Novel Writing Month!

  1. Tricia says:

    It’s kind of exciting, taking part in this, and a big contrast to writing on Protag. To achieve 50,000 words in 30 days means you have to write an average of 1,667 daily. I think I probably did that during my first month on Protag, so I decided to have a go. But I can’t flit about from story to story. I have to stick to the same one, so it can be difficult to stay focused, especially for a die-hard procrastinator like me!

    I’m currently on 13,560 words, after day 4, so I’m churning out well over 3.000 words a day, usually in two sessions: one in the morning, and a longer one in the afternoon. If that sounds a lot, think again. On the NaNoWriMo forums I discovered people who had produced 40,000 words on day ONE! Yesterday I came across one who was up to 150,000 words plus, and still going. How do these people do it?

    The main thing to remember, according to seasoned ”wrimos”, is to just write: ignore your inner editor, and don’t reread what you’ve written – any of it! You have to think of it as a first draft, or even a humongously long outline. You can edit after 1st December…

    My “NaNovel” in progress is the one I was thinking of writing when I stumbled across Protagonize and got distracted. It’s a children’s book aimed at 11-13 year-olds. It’s set in the real world, then turns to fantasy about a third of the way in (that’s the part I’ve just written) Shades of Narnia, I suppose.

    Good luck to my fellow “Protago-wrimos”. I know of at least five, apart from me, who are indulging in the madness of NaNoLand.


  2. Way to churn ’em out, Trish.
    I’m at only about 7,000 words, with my biggest worry being the sense that I’m about one-third through the telling.
    If so,I’ll need to go back and add adjectives and adverbs: about 29,000 of them!
    The whole mammoth exercise is a great impetus for finally getting to it, although I find it impossible to forego re-reading and some small editing.
    See you at the finish line.
    – Forrest

  3. darkliquid says:

    I’ve been playing catch up for most of the time on NaNo and have consequently been completely absent from Protagonize. I’ve never won it before and this time my wife and I are doing a collaborative story. Yes, it’s not allowed, but we are going for 50k words each and we are focusing on separate characters (I’m doing the baddies mostly) so they kind of work as separate novels but not really. Either way, if I actually reach 50k I’ll consider myself a winner regardless. At the moment I’m trying to catch up to the 26k mark since being way behind at 14-odd thousand for last week or so.

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