NaNoWriMo. A term familiar to over 120,000 people worldwide who are willing to take on the writing challenge, is now going to be a household word around these parts. I just signed up this morning and it feels great!
Immediately after doing so, and before even reading the welcome email telling me I should do this, I sent an email to everyone I know detailing what I am about to embark on. Here is the content of that email:
“Well folks the time has come to put up or shut up. NaNoWriMo is here again and this year I have signed up to participate. Holy shit. What have I gotten myself into?
NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month and from November 1 - 30 I am taking on their challenge to write a 50,000 word novel. Again, holy shit. It is simultaneously liberating and scary as hell to know that with this kind of structured approach that I will finally have a completed novel after all is said and done. Regular postings of content and word counts are done and although no one will be ringing my doorbell to point and laugh at me if I don't complete the challenge, it is going to feel a whole lot better to win than not fulfill it.
In my recoculously OCD brain I worked it out that I have to write about 2,000 words a day on average. That isn't really all that bad; between all the procrastinations I complete on a daily basis I estimate my current word count to be somewhere upwards of 5,000. That's good because it makes me feel a little less insane for taking this on and also makes me realize how I have been squandering my time on unfocused priorities for just way too long now.
What does it mean though? Well pretty much I will be just as available as I was up until November 1 -- read: basically non-existent (yeah sorry about that) -- its just that my focus is going to drastically change because its time to be a novelist. Period. My ability to stay connected won't really change its just that no one will likely hear about anything but my characters for the next 30 days (yeah sorry about that too).
I will still post GLR blogs (this week I am working to try to get the entire month of Nov. front loaded, I'm about 1/2 way there) and will still see people but my time in email/comment land/FB/text/phone is going to basically be nil. The product of that is going to be a completely crappy, unedited, first version of a novel that I will be able to refine and publish. About effing time.
So I guess really I'm just looking for the validation (shocker right?) and to kind of let everyone know what's what with me. If you want to see me in Nov. just come over because I only get a max of 5 days off and I plan to spend them sleeping.
And there it is. I put a PS on the email that I would be posting all over the place from email to here to FB so I could be held completely accountable. One of the things it should have said is that my first task is to go out and learn how to spell words like fulfill and existent. Ugh. Regardless, like the wonderfully supportive people over at NaNoWriMo have made very clear “editing is what December is for”.
I had fully intended to write one of my novels by hand and strangely enough that one is coming along really well, albeit slow but definitely steady so I will not be looking toward that project for this challenge.
In process right now I have at least three other novels. Well stuff that I think could become novels if expanded; I guess more appropriately they could be expanded, not every story can be. One of them has been in the works since 1999 and its early character development and outline is likely what I am going to use as my basis for this November writing project.
Sorry fellas, its kind of chick lit, modern woman blah, blah, blah boring kind of stuff to you (unless you embrace the inner humorous romantic in yourself and in that case I say bravo!). Luckily though, I know a lot of ladies.
Here’s hoping I don’t forget to do things like eat, sleep, pee. Then again isn’t that what furious writing is all about anyway? I will keep you all updated on the progress.
Holy shit. It’s on.