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National Novel Writing Month

National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, will kick off on November 1, 2011. The goal of this exercise is to write at least 50,000 words in one month, which breaks down to a measly 1,667 words or so a day.

Wait a second, did he say measly?

Why yes…yes I did.

1,667 words in the world I live in these days is maybe half my normal output. I have a fairly busy, active life–I work a minimum of 13 hours a day, own a home and have all the usual maintenance woes, have all the usual ups and downs of life, and coupled with my 24 hour playboy lifestyle (?), I still cruise at around 3,000 words. A day. Virtually every day, though I do loaf here and there.

I’ve participated in past NaNos, and while at first the 1,667 word daily goal was a bit arduous, I got over that pretty quickly. As a matter of fact, last year’s NaNo gave me about 63,000 words of The Gathering Dead. So it really can be time well spent.

But I don’t think I’ll be participating this year. I’ll have the first draft of The Rising Horde finished on October 20, and while that’s being beta-read and edited, I’ll launch into a partially-done science fiction adventure book called Tribes. But I’ll be getting a head start on everybody else, and it just doesn’t feel right to drop a half-finished book into the mix, because I’ll have already spooled up the Great Writing Machine, and by the time November 1 comes around, I’ll have hit my stride. And then I’ll have to stop halfway through the first or second week to tend to rewrites on The Rising Horde before I release that product into the wild. So while there’s a chance I might make the requisite 50,000 word count every NaNo participant is supposed to produce, I’m not going to lock myself into something that will be nagging at the back of my mind. With other projects in play, it just doesn’t seem like it’s worth it for me.

But for those of you who are out there and who want to take a crack at it–well hot damn, have yourself a go at it, cowboys. But the 1,667 target is a light one–caffeine up and go for 2,000. Or better yet, 2,500–that way, you’ll have awesome company, because another guy named Steve writes at around 2,500 words per day. But he’s not just a lowly Knight, he’s the King.

As in Stephen King, if you need me to spell it out.

2,500 words is a walk in the park for me these days, but that doesn’t mean I don’t occasionally break out in a sweat from doing it. So if you’re going to go NaNo, do it up right–go for 2,500 words a day, and on November 30, you’ll have written a full-on novel. In a month.

You’ve got some time to prepare. Pay your bills early, stock up the fridge, and overwrite the night before Thanksgiving, so you can take some time to see the fam and gobble down some turkey. And the next day, skip the Black Friday shopping deals (we have the innernets now damn it, no need to go out and fight for a parking space), and churn out another 2,500 words. Go for the gold–don’t write three-quarters of the book in November, write a full-on book!

To quote Rob Schneider from the films The Waterboy and Little Nicky: “You can do it!”

Edit To Add: Would have been nice if I’d delivered the NANO link, eh? Sorry for being a thoughtless bastard–here it is: NaNoWriMo

Categories: Writing Tags: ,
  1. October 3, 2011 at 4:13 pm

    I am a NaNo noob, but I didn’t think that 1700 words a day was that big of a deal either. Now, I will have family here for a week or so for Thanksgiving, but i figure I can make up for lost time on the weekends and before and after. Besides, the way I look at it? This is a first draft. The words do not have to be in the right order, do they?

  2. October 3, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    Well, from my perspective, having the words in the right order certainly cuts down on the rewriting and tweaking!

  3. Paul Gross
    October 3, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    *rubbing hands together* any target date on the release of The Rising Horde?

    Need any more Beta readers?

    Do I sound needy? LOL

    Every time you post, my pulse quickens, hoping for news of TRH😛

    • October 4, 2011 at 7:48 am

      LOL! I’m workin’ it bro, I’m workin’ it!

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