Let's Talk About NaNoWriMo

The end of the year is approaching, which means that people will become so busy that there will barely be time to shower. So if you happen to pass someone on the sidewalk or in a narrow hallway and you get a whoosh of body odor, it's safe to conclude that it is, in fact, October (unless you're in a gym or something). This is the month that everything begins to spiral into insanity. Well, in my world, at least. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and, maybe most important of all... NaNoWriMo.

If you're just dipping your toe into the blogging community you might be seeing this strange jumble of words everywhere. I know last year, when I blogged about it and my mom happened to see the post, she told me, "You're using all these codes on your site. I don't understand anything you're saying." I then explained to her that it is not a code, in fact, but the name of a fantastic month-long event. The name has been shortened so we don't have to type out the whole thing each time it's mentioned.

For those of you who are screaming at me to get on with it already, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. Thousands of people band together on one site, determined to do this crazy, impossible thing: write 50,000 words in 30 days. Each day you update your word count on  that maddening little bar. This novel is not about quality, but quantity. There are no prizes except a huge sense of triumph and satisfaction, and the fact that you can claim you did it. The whole point is to just get it done. I'm sad to say that I've never accomplished this feat. I'm usually a very slow writer. But that doesn't stop me from trying!

There are those who don't like the whole idea of NaNoWriMo. (I do feel bad for agents, because they seem to get a slew of queries around December and January. Point: do not query this novel as soon as you've finished it!) Personally, I love it. Even though the writing is horrid and I can't seem to get to that 50,000 mark, I always have a good chunk of manuscript by the end of November. There's just something about knowing that you're not alone in this consuming attempt to create. In knowing that if you have a moment of despair or have no idea where to go next with your plot, there's a forum where people are just waiting to give you a word of encouragement.

I know there are already tons of blog posts and articles about NaNoWriMo that go into more description than this, and blogs that offer methods or techniques to use, but I thought I would put my two cents in! I'm hoping to sign up this year, but I refused to abandon my current W.I.P. until it's finished, so we'll see what happens. How about you? Are you going to participate?

NOTE: There is also NaBloWriMo, which I think just started up this year. Not too sure - I'll have to look it up. This takes place during October, and you write a blog post every day. Get it? National Blog Writing Month? At least I think that's what it stands for... You probably know more about this than me!