There’s a chill in the air in Georgia. Not enough to turn on the heat, but enough to turn off the A/C and break out the boots. It’s finally fall. All around me, people are excited: sweaters! football! hot coffee! Halloween! Pumpkin Spice EVERYTHING! And, call me basic, but I’m excited too. While I love the beach, and my birthday makes spring special, fall is definitely my favorite season. The views are prettier, the weather is perfect, the food is amazing, and the festivities are the best. Halloween decorations, Thanksgiving food, and the holiest of holy holidays for creatives: NaNoWriMo.
That’s right people, this is not a drill! NaNoWriMo is now less than a month away. Let the wild PrepTober begin!
Okay, for those of you who are wondering whether I had a stroke and lost my grasp on language, let me explain. National Novel Writing Month or NaNoWriMo is an annual event that challenges participants to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days during November. Thousands of people participate and it’s grown every year since it first started in 1999 with just 21 writers. There’s a lot of passion about NaNo, both for and against. Many writers love the frenzied creativity and comradery it inspires and the fact that it forces you to do the one thing a writer must do: write. Others are less than enthusiastic about the thousands of super-rough amateur first drafts it generates and the idea that a “real” novel can be written in so short a time.
I fall firmly on the love side of the NaNo debate. It’s meant to be fun and motivational and if you view it in this light, it’s an incredible way to jumpstart your creativity even if (or especially if) you don’t think of yourself as a writer. It’s a whole 30 days of thousands of people collectively screaming, “you can do it!” What’s not to love?
Well, if you view it as a pressure-filled competition against yourself, the clock, or your fellow writers, maybe not. And for that reason, NaNo isn’t for everyone. So if you’re on the fence about whether to participate or not, here are some links to help you decide:
- Ava Jae asks: To NaNo or Not to NaNo?
- Or watch the video
- The Creative Penn lists 5 Reasons You Should Do NaNoWriMo
- Chuck Wendig plays devils advocate
- The NaNoWriMo blog might be a bit biased with its 10 Reasons You Should Do NaNoWriMo
- And for balance, here’s Sean Munger’s plea against the NaNo madness
Are you planning to participate in NaNoWriMo this year? Let me know in the comments! And if you’re looking for a writing buddy, include your WriMo name.