‘Tis the season. We’ve come round to November again (16 days ago) and we all know what that means. (If anyone says, “Black Friday!” we will officially head into rant territory.) I’m speaking, of course, of National Novel Writing Month, quirkily known as “NaNoWriMo.” Yes, it’s NaNo time for all my writer friends out there…a most wonderful, wonderful, wonderful, wonderful, wonderful time of the year! (If you missed the reference, and maybe even if you didn’t, I apologize for the irritation of reading that. Check out this little jingle if life just can’t go on until you’re in the know- or if you’ve suddenly been hit with nostalgia.)
I love nano (but I hate intermittent capitalization, so we’re dropping it from here on out). It’s brilliant. If you’ve done it before, you know the feeling. If it’s new to you, head over to the site and look around, but in a nutshell, signing up for nano means you pledge to write an entire novel in the month of November (or a 50K-word portion of one). “31 days and nights of literary abandon” is the slogan, and rightly so. To accomplish this feat you’ll have to do some leave-taking, of your family, your work, your dog, your sleep, and obviously your senses. But it’s completely worth it. If you’ve always wanted to write “for real,” not just every six months or so, nano will help you make that dream a priority. The accountability of the program is a nifty illusion; no one polices the participants, other than any nano friends that may be in the mix with you, but somehow that promise you make to no one but yourself becomes awfully weighty by the time Thanksgiving appears on the horizon.
Which is where I find myself right now. Can’t believe I’ll fall short yet again this year of the holy nano grail. Actually I can believe it. It’s been that kind of year. But that shouldn’t stop you. You can be twice as amazing if you sign up now and finish in half the time. Triple your awesomeness if you take running breaks to clear your head and daydream about your characters’ backstories.
If you’re already a wrimoer, kudos, my friend. And all hail if you’ve completed it successfully, past or present. The rest of us will keep stabbing at it until we get there with you, won’t we? If you are a writer/runner, you are blessed with double the optimism, ’cause it takes a serious cargo of it to stick with either one. So I have every confidence in you.
Write on and run it off, my friends!