Every year during November hundreds of thousands of creative writers accept the challenge of writing 50,000 words in 30 days. It is more lovingly known as Nation Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWrimo. The fine people at NaNoWriMo.org host the event and provide connections for writers to help encourage each other and provide the motivating boost that comes from accountability.
During NaNoWriMo 2013 I participated for the first time. Attacking the challenge with the understanding that I had never written that many words in one story before in my life, and there fore it must be impossible to accomplish, I had no real hope of making it to the finish line. But something incredible happened once I got connected to others that where trying the same thing… I began to believe.
Writing over 2,ooo words in one day became writing 14,000 in one week. Next thing I knew I had over 90,000 words written in one month. It was an awesome feeling. To know that I could do it was enough to get my creative juices flowing. Ideas flooded to me as I realized I could write that many words. NaNoWriMo 2014 was not as successful, I still hit 50,000 words in 30 days, just not much more than that. But, what I think is the bigger accomplishment, was that between November 2013 and November 2014 I published a book and wrote several short stories.
NaNoWriMo is not about writing a book in a month. It is about proving to yourself that you can put your story in to words when you dedicate the time and effort to do so. Then you carry that knowledge to the other 11 months of the year. Before you know it, you’re an author.
For those participating in NaNoWriMo 2015, happy writing. For those that want to but haven’t started, today is a good day to join the fun.