NaNoWriMo: What the heck is it?

So you’ve decided you want to write a novel. Wonderful! Allow me to congratulate you on choosing an exciting – albeit terrifying – endeavor. Whatever you choose to write about, be it a murder mystery or a story about little gnomes that come to life, know that there are thousands of people like you. Especially if you’re participating in NaNoWriMo!

“NaNo-what now?” I hear you say. “NaNoWriMo!” I shout back. “The National Novel Writing Month!”

The National Novel Writing Month is an event that occurs every year in November during which writers are challenged to write 50,000 words in a month. (For those of us not good at math, that’s 1,666 words per day. ) That’s a lot of words and many of us have full-time jobs or are bogged down with school work. Why would anyone bother with this challenge?

Well, there are quite a few reasons. If you’re truly serious about writing, you know that you can’t call yourself a writer until you actually write “The End”. Participating in NaNoWriMo forces you to make time in your day to practice your craft, which is writing.  That was the case with me, so NaNoWriMo’s challenge really motivated me to actually sit down and finish my novel.

Another reason to participate is to get into the habit of writing. If you’ve ever taken a Creative Writing course or read a book/article about how to write, you’ve heard that writing is a craft, and as a craft, you have to practice it to perfect it. That means writing every day. NaNoWriMo is a perfect way to jumpstart that practice! By writing 1,666 words every day, you essentially put yourself into that writing groove and, one day, your novel (and all future novels) will thank you for it.

There’s also the fact that you won’t really know what you’re capable of until you try. By not attempting to write a novel, you’ll never know if you actually can write a novel! NaNoWriMo has an incredibly supportive community that will always be pushing you onward, and if you don’t actually reach 50,000 words by the end of November, you’ll still find support from others. Writing is an incredibly solitary activity, so it’s important to surround yourself with other writers to learn from their experiences and have their support.

So now that you know what the National Novel Writing Month is and why you’d want to participate, why don’t you sign up? After all, the world needs your novel! Good Luck!

If you’ve got any questions or want to say something about NaNoWriMo, why don’t you comment below? I’d love to interact with you!

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