national novel writing month

NaNoWriMo 2016

It is almost time for the annual NaNoWriMo, the National Novel Writing Month. It begins at midnight October 31, and runs through the last day of November.

The goal of NaNoWriMo is to write 50,000 words (and complete a novel) in 30 days.

Don’t stress out yet. The numbers divide down to 1,667 words a day, typically 60-90 minutes of writing.

Join more than 300,000 people globally, and Writers in the Grove members, by participating actively or passively. This can be a solo experience or a highly social one. You can connect online and/or connect in person through the many local activities, events, and write-ins where people gather in a social space to write and get to know each other.

Go to the NaNoWriMo site for more information, and check out last year’s “It’s NaNoWriMo Time: How To, Tips, Techniques, and Survival Advice.”

Last year, Writers in the Grove had about eight people participating, some openly, some secretly, not willing to go public because they were afraid of failure. Let’s clear something up right from the start. There is no failing with this. The goal is to write, and anything that gets you writing, and keeps you writing, is a good thing, whether or not you achieve the 50K goal. Many never reach it, but keep trying year after year.

NaNoWriMo is not just about the word count. It is about the writing.

To handle the diverse Writers in the Grove membership needs, we are once again challenging our members to do one of the following:

  1. Write a minimum of 1,667 words a day.
  2. Write for an hour minimum a day.

What You Will Learn From Participating in NaNoWriMo

Last year was the first year we had many members participating and we all learned so much, it was an amazing journey. Here are some samples:

  • I learned I could write consistently every day.
  • I learned how to write consistently daily.
  • I discovered some fears and road blocks I didn’t know I had.
  • I figured out how to work harder with less research.
  • I just wrote. Usually I spend too much time in my head and less writing, but I just wrote.
  • I learned it isn’t as hard as it sounds.
  • I learned that I had something to say, a story to tell.
  • I realized how much I allow life to get in my way. I sit down to write and the phone rings, doorbell goes off, email pings, thoughts roam – and how much I need to just say no.
  • I realized that the true art in writing is editing after you write.

NaNoWriMo is a chance to note all the things that get in your writing way. Keep a notebook and jot them down when you encounter them, and make a plan around or through them. You will always need those solutions as you charge ahead with your writing career. (more…)

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It’s NaNoWriMo Time: How To, Tips, Techniques, and Survival Advice

NaNoWriMo Flyer.November 1, 2015, at midnight is the start of NaNoWriMo, the National Novel Writing Month.

The goal of NaNoWriMo is to write 50,000 words (and complete a novel) in 30 days.

Sound impossible? The numbers divide down to 1,666 words a day, typically 60-90 minutes of writing.

To participate, you may do so actively or passively. This can be a solo experience or a highly social one. You can connect online and/or connect in person through the many local activities, events, and write-ins where people gather in a social space to write and get to know each other.

Here is how it works.

  1. Before November 1, sign up on the NaNoWriMo site. There is no fee. It’s free. By registering, you will get email notifications and notes to cheer you on throughout the month, and be able to track your word count daily.
  2. At midnight, October 31, you start writing.
  3. Each day, you report the number of words you’ve written. If you are using Scrivener, it’s easy to update this information daily. I’ve included tips on how to track your writing below.
  4. If you wish, participate in the regional forums such as the one for Washington County, Oregon, and consider attending some of the many local events throughout the month. NOTE: There are also prep events online and locally worth attending.

That’s it.

NaNoWriMo typically features over 310,000 participants on six continents. Many educators work with their students to participate during November as well as throughout the years. (more…)