November is here! For writers and friends and family of writers, you probably all know what that means. For those who don't know, November is National Novel Writing Month. This will be my first year participating in NaNoWriMo. The basic idea is to write a 50k word novel in a month. Sounds nuts, right?
It is. From what I've heard, that's what makes it fun.
I'm going to make a confession: when I first heard about NaNo, it seemed like a pointless idea to me. It seemed to me that it was glorifying writing without editing, and a first draft is just one small component of the writing process.
I don't feel this way anymore. The first draft is perhaps the most important part of the process. You can't edit something that doesn't exist, and many people have a hard time getting that first draft going. So, I have since seen the error of my thinking. My sincerest apologies for thinking NaNo is pointless.
Though I've never participated, it's obvious from what I've heard that most people who do it have a lot of fun, whether they actually get to 50k or not. It also really helps motivate people to write and keep writing and helps connect people with other writers.
So, I apologize again for ever thinking it was pointless.
Once I got my head out of the clouds and realized that NaNo is an awesome concept, I've been planning on joining in the craziness. For the past two years I seriously considered participating, but kept finding excuses not to. There's always something. I'm busy with work, my apartment flooded and I'm living with my parents, I have a new boyfriend, I'm recovering from surgery, I just moved, my boyfriend's recovering from surgery…
Okay, so maybe some of those excuses are completely valid, but I figure there will always be things going on in my life that could potentially get in the way of writing. So this year I'm going to give NaNo a whirl.
Back in September when I chose to participate, I decided I was going to go about this novel differently than my previous two. I had this grand idea to fully plan it out: do all the research, character outlines and back stories, and all the plotting. This is not something I normally do before I start. I'm usually a pantser (someone who does little to no planning, meaning they fly by the seat of their pants).
This time around I truly intended to plan it all out. I was hoping it would maybe help the entire process go faster. Unfortunately, I wanted to finish my first draft of Caribou Canyon before beginning any planning for novel number three. CC took much longer than I thought it would. I finished on Oct. 26th and decided that I needed the week to recover. So, I'm not doing any planning, and honestly it's kind of a liberating feeling. I feel like I'm staying true to myself by not planning. I'm just going to write like crazy and see what happens.
Ahhh! I'm so excited!
Wish me luck! And good luck to other crazy participants! Happy writing!