November is National Novel Writing Month, according to NaNoWriMo, an organisation started out in the US in 1999, which encourages people to write 50,000 words in November. That’s about 1667 words a day for thirty days. Given that an average novel is around 80,000 words, that’s a good chunk of the way towards a first draft. Also, novellas are becoming more popular these days, especially in light of the digital revolution, and 50,000 words, about 175 printed pages, is pretty much a complete novella.
The advice on the site is not to worry if you don’t have a plan for your work beforehand, nor should you worry if you don’t really know what you’re going to write about; just get going and let the creative juices flow. They tell you not to edit, there’s plenty of time to do that in December and beyond. You should just write and not worry about grammar, punctuation or awkward sentences. Finally, they think you should tell people about it because, in week two, when the going is likely to get tough, you’re going to need all the support you can get.
I’m ready to give it a go. I like the idea of writing every day, making a ritual of it, and having a clear-cut short-term goal. However, I’m realistic, and I’m busy. So I’m going to try for 667 words a day (20,000 words in a month). The goal is to write, but we can all set the goals that are right for us.
Have you always wanted to give writing to go? Is there a specific book in you that want to write? Or would you simply like to see what happens if you spend a month writing every day? If so, why not sign up on their site, or even do it privately?
And if you are giving it a go, we’d love to be part of your support team. Please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d be keen to hear how you get on.