Caffeine: morning cup + mid-morning cappuccino
Evil Calories: chocolate croissants
Reality TV: Rachel Zoe Project
Only two and a half weeks until the insanity that is NaNoWriMo. I wish I could talk everyone I know into partaking - even my non-writery friends. It's crazy (and I do mean crazy) fun, and the more people around you participating in the utter madness, the less you feel like you're going to have a total brown out. (Plus, you can do nifty things, like create and post your own book cover that your super-talented husband made for you.)
For those who are interested (or haven't a clue what I'm talking about)...
National Novel Writing Month (or NaNoWriMo) is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing. Participants begin writing November 1. The goal is to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30.
Valuing enthusiasm and perseverance over painstaking craft, NaNoWriMo is a novel-writing program for everyone who has thought fleetingly about writing a novel but has been scared away by the time and effort involved.
Because of the limited writing window, the ONLY thing that matters in NaNoWriMo is output. It's all about quantity, not quality. The kamikaze approach forces you to lower your expectations, take risks, and write on the fly.
Make no mistake: You will be writing a lot of crap. And that's a good thing. 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.
As you spend November writing, you can draw comfort from the fact that, all around the world, other National Novel Writing Month participants are going through the same joys and sorrows of producing the Great Frantic Novel. Wrimos meet throughout the month to offer encouragement, commiseration, and—when the thing is done—the kind of raucous celebrations that tend to frighten animals and small children.
In 2007, we had over 100,000 participants. More than 15,000 of them crossed the 50k finish line by the midnight deadline, entering into the annals of NaNoWriMo superstardom forever. They started the month as auto mechanics, out-of-work actors, and middle school English teachers. They walked away novelists.
So, to recap:
What: Writing one 50,000-word novel from scratch in a month's time.
Who: You! We can't do this unless we have some other people trying it as well. Let's write laughably awful yet lengthy prose together.
Why: The reasons are endless! To actively participate in one of our era's most enchanting art forms! To write without having to obsess over quality. To be able to make obscure references to passages from our novels at parties. To be able to mock real novelists who dawdle on and on, taking far longer than 30 days to produce their work.
When: You can sign up anytime to add your name to the roster and browse the forums. Writing begins November 1. To be added to the official list of winners, you must reach the 50,000-word mark by November 30 at midnight. Once your novel has been verified by our web-based team of robotic word counters, the partying begins.I'll admit that my NaNo piece from last year is collecting dust bunnies in my "poo lives" folder on my computer. But, it was my first venture after completing my book and I needed to simply think about something else. And if anything, NaNo is just a bust-ass creative brainiac work out. Will you want to tear your own arm off and beat yourself to death with it? Oh, yes. Will there be weeping, whimpering and several bad hair days due to lack of time to shower? Without a doubt. So, follow the link and sign up! It's free (though I highly recommend making a contribution. Insanity like this can't be completely free.). And then once you sign up, you'll get hooked on the forums immediately. Don't try and fight it. It happens to everyone. But before you get sucked into a NaNoWriMo Ate My Soul thread, add me as a buddy here!
(My NaNo secret? I'm all about the word sprints, baby! There's truly nothing like convoluted crap spewing from you at break neck speed.)