If you’ve spent any amount of time online, especially on Twitter or any writing forum, you’ve probably heard of NaNoWriMo. While at first it may seem like a jumble of letters, I assure you that NaNoWriMo is far more than that.
Let’s take at what exactly NaNoWriMo is and how you can participate in this 30-day writing challenge!
What is NaNoWriMo?
NaNoWriMo is an abbreviation for National Novel Writing Month. Yes, there is an entire month dedicated to novel writing. Pretty awesome, I know.
The goal of NaNoWriMo is to write a 50,000-word novel between November 1st and November 30th.
Now, before you go running for the hills, writing a novel in a month is totally doable. Even if you’re like me and aren’t a full-time author, writing 50,000 words in 30 days is possible.
To achieve this word goal, it’s suggested to write 1,667 words per day. With writing master like Stephen King recommending you write 2,000 words a day to improve your craft, NaNoWriMo and the 1,667-word count per day is really no different.
1). Why should I participate in NaNoWriMo?
Why not participate in NaNoWriMo? It’s a fun writing challenge to participate in, and at the end, you have a novel to show for! At the very least, participate in NaNoWriMo as an excuse to work on that book you’ve been talking about.
NaNoWriMo may also help you get over Blank Page Syndrome. This is when that empty page intimidates you to the point that you forget how to start a sentence. With NaNoWriMo as an excuse, you can overcome Blank Page Syndrome.
2). What if I don’t hit 1,667 words a day?
That’s OK! Even if you only write 50 words of your novel in a day, you’re still making progress towards your writing goal. Don’t let an off day throw off your writing confidence. It happens to everyone.
Plus, chances are that you’ll have really good writing days, too. Maybe it’s the weekend and you have extra time to clear your mind or you had a great night’s sleep and are feeling energized, you’ll likely have days where you easily write more than 1,667 words.
As long as you’re making progress, that’s what matters.
3). It’s already November. Is it too late to participate?
Absolutely not! No matter what day it is, get your pen and paper out and start writing. You can always add extra days into December to make up for missed days if needed.
4). What if my novel needs edits?
That’s perfectly normal. First drafts are meant to be terrible, and your NaNoWriMo draft is nothing more than a first draft.
First drafts are meant to scare you into never writing again. Okay, maybe not that extreme, but you get the point. First drafts never see the eyes of anyone but yourself. They’re a brain dump for you to get the basic storyline and dialogue into words.
Editing is just as important as writing, so take the time after NaNoWriMo to edit, revise, and re-write your novel.
How to Participate in NaNoWriMo
Participating in NaNoWriMo is easy. Just get writing!
For those who want to connect with others participating in NaNoWriMo, you can set up an author profile on the official NaNoWriMo website, but this isn’t required.
You can also search for and connect with authors via social media. Twitter is a great place to find other writers participating in NaNoWriMo.
Resources & Other Helpful Tips
Ready to participate in NaNoWriMo? Check out these helpful resources and tips:
- Learn more about NaNoWriMo and why this organization has grown in popularity since its start in 1999.
- Check out these 35+ tips on conquering NaNoWriMo!
- Take into consideration these writing and publishing thoughts.
- Read even more about NaNoWriMo that wasn’t covered here.
- Feeling rebellious? Go ahead and break all the NaNoWriMo rules.
- Bookmark this site, because it has even more NaNoWriMo resources.
- Want to participate but have no clue where to start? Learn how you can start a book in 15 minutes or less.
- Outlining is a must, so make sure you take the time to do so.
- Build realistic characters using the FREE character template.
- Don’t let writer’s block slow you down. Overcome writer’s block in 5 minutes.
Ready, Set, Write
Participating in NaNoWriMo is a great way to start writing that novel you’ve always talked about. Now’s the time to sit down and put pen to paper.
While the word count may seem daunting, the most important thing to remember is to just have fun.
Don’t put it off any longer. Start writing today!