November is one of my favorite months. First of all, there’s that huge eating tradition later this month that involves turkey and about a hundred side dishes. And at our house, at least two kind of pie (pumpkin and pecan). Mmmm.
November is also a quiet month, in a way. There’s less daylight, a fire burning in the fireplace, and writing 50,000 words in one month suddenly sounds like a good idea. That’s the premise of National Novel Writing Month. It’s a community of writers who sign up to “win” (winning=writing at least 50,000 new words) NaNoWriMo. Once you sign up at NaNoWriMo's website, you have access to lots of great tools and incentives to keep your fingers flying across the keyboard and cranking out the first draft of a book.
And if you’re like some writers (ahem…talking about myself here), and aren’t very good at math, there’s even a handy device that helps you figure out how many words you have to write each day to meet your total word count goal. There’s also an online community that offers pep talks, friendly competitions between different states, and even gives you access to in-person NaNo meet ups in your area.
What’s the trick to writing 50,000 words in one month? In my opinion, it’s daily writing times, and writing without caution. So don’t worry about spelling or grammar. Don’t use the backspace key. Just get the story out, no matter how rough it feels, or how weird it seems to write with such abandon. There’s a certain freedom in knowing it’s okay to make mistakes. It can lead your story to new places and help you stop censoring yourself, too.
Can a book you write during NaNoWriMo get published? Most definitely. My first book was a NaNo book! Hope to see you on the NaNo site! Good luck.
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