Saturday, November 01, 2008

NaNoWriMo 2008

It's National Novel Writing Month this month and it all starts today!!

The month of November, over the past nine years, has been the month where thousands of people around the world write a 50,000 word novel. Plot, synopsis and planning go out the window - it's all about getting words onto paper or screen, committing yourself to thirty days of solid writing, finishing or at least making a good headway into that novel that you've always said you were gonna write.

A month full of tears, triumph, late nights, early mornings and loads of coffee giving birth to thousands of novels and novel writers. Sure, the output will be drivel at best, but what's a first draft supposed to be but a scattered plotline hastily put together that makes no sense and contains flat characters and clich├ęd dialogue. That's what rewrites are for, to fix all that stuff up.

But that's for December and beyond, for now, over 15,000 writers will be doing what so many people say they will do, try to do and frequently fail to do - they are writing a novel.

Today, thousands will be hunkered over computers or notebooks, churning out their first draft, keeping an eye on the word count even at this very early stage, calculating how many to go before they reach the big 50k. It's going to be a long month, a painful month, but ultimately, a rewarding month.

I signed up at the last moment. It wasn't even on my radar even though I've always wanted to participate. A colleague at work said that she was doing it this year for the first time and encouraged me to get involved. My mind buzzed around with the status of my own novel, thinking, can I really ditch my recently set goals and start something new? I'd already planned to write 52,000 words this month as it is; could I go back on this?

And then it hit me - something about two birds and a big effing stone.

So I'm on board. I've buddied up with eleven other participants, mainly from the BTZ forum, and we are all going to knock this 50k on the head, and write a novel in the process.

So, good luck to Jo, Tamren, Nethers, RockChick, Sammo, Smudge, Iain, Betty, Chel, Roger and Maria and everyone else!!

Heads down, bums up, people!

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