There’s this thing called nanowrimo (National Novel Writing Month) where every year thousands of people from around the world become reclusive shut-ins by choice and bust their guts writing 50,000 words over 30 days… that’s essentially the first draft of a small novel. They chart their word count progress, nut out problems on the forum, get tips and writing inspo from successful authors, and hopefully come out the other side with an actual piece of work. It sounds exhausting just writing about it!
I first heard about it on Gail Carson Levine’s blog (the woman who wrote Ella Enchanted, Fairest, and my eleven year old self’s personal favourite The Two Princesses of Bamarre) and I thought it sounded pretty awesome. Fast forward a few years and here I am signing up. Oops! Did I forget to mention this is the same month that all my uni exams are happening??
I’ve since discovered that some really amazing books were written during this massive novel writing marathon. Including the ever magical The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, Sara Gruen’s Water for Elephants, and the popular young adult novels Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress by Marissa Meyer.
Now obviously, you’re not going to come out of a month of writing with a fully formed and polished novel, but what nano does seem to do is instill good writing habits by forcing you to set aside a few hours a day to write. Most likely whatever I manage to cobble together will need a lot of work, but the best way to practice your writing is to… well… write something! And really, 1,666 words a day isn’t going to kill me! -she says with a not so convincing smile.
Anyone else taking up the challenge this year?