It seems as though everyone and their next-door neighbor’s pet golden retriever is writing a novel, typing away at their computer keyboards. Everyone, that is, except you. You may think to yourself, “Someday I’ll write a novel, but right now I have no motivation.” Well, friend, that someday is today, and NaNoWriMo is your motivation. NaNoWriMo, short for National Novel Writing Month, is here to inspire you to write that sci- fi novel starring pink alien ponies and a Marilyn Monroe look-alike.Lasting the entiremonth of November, the project urges you to completely fi nish a 175-page novel with roughly 50,000 words in a span of just 30 days. If that sounds unbelievable to you, try this on for size: last year there were 25,500 participants and about 3,500 winners. You might be questioning how award-winning a NaNoWri- Mo novel might be. Quite simply,it will probably be full of a lot of crap.
That isn’t the point, and that also isn’t such a bad thing. According to the NaNoWriMo Web site, “By forcing yourself to write so intensely, you are giving yourself permission to make mistakes. To forgo the endless tweaking and editing and just create. To build without tearing down.” The mission is to be creative and to fi nally have the opportunity to express your ideas, however dreadfully.
If you honestly believe that writing is not for you, you can still get involved by posting inspiration to the forums or contributing to threads entitled “How To Procrastinate Effectively” with word association games and verbal dominos. One message board was extremely helpful: writers posted questions asking for details to help the realism in their stories (“What color are police cars in West Virginia?”) and others answer (“Blue with a yellow roof”).
It is not too late to embark on this creative endeavor! Signups for NaNoWriMo began on Oct. 1 and continue until Nov. 25. There is no sign-up fee, but if you are able to donate, you are asked to contribute something towards hosting and administrative costs. For more information, check out www.nanowrimo.org.