Right now you can hear the busy hum of writers all over the world preparing for the yearly Writer Olympics – also known as National Novel Writing Month. For the month of November you’ll see and hear writers collectively screaming, crying and slapping each other on the back as they attempt the daunting task of putting down 50,000 words in 30 days.
But is it for you? Is it really a fair challenge for new and old writers to charge off and make the commitment to writing over a thousand words a day and deliver a full novel within the month?
I say… yes. Even if you fail.
Especially if you fail.
I attempted NaNoWriMo a few times before finally finishing one year, a glorious month where I threw myself wholehearted into the job of writing a full novel and then went on to polish and edit the new baby until I released her out into the world and started submitting to publishers.
That first book is being released in February 2012 from Carina Press – “Blood of the Pride” about a private investigator with a hidden secret – she’s part of a cat shifter clan who threw her out because she couldn’t shift anymore. Now part of human society she finds herself pulled back in when they need an outside investigator and she’s the best woman for the job.
A year later I launched myself back into the NaNo wasteland and plowed through another favorite love – comic books.
Out of that thirty days of insanity came “Blaze of Glory” – the first in a superhero trilogy from Samhain Publishing. The sequel, “Heroes Without, Monsters Within” is due to be released in January, 2012 and I’m chugging along on the third.
I don’t do NaNoWriMo anymore but still love to use it as an encouragement to get cracking on my latest project. My steampunk novel, “Wild Cards and Iron Horses” was started before November but I drove the proverbial stake through its heart sitting in a virtual café in Second Life with other NaNo writers, all of us aiming for that word goal.
Now I’m not saying that every NaNo novel will be published or should be published. There’s horror stories out there of agents dreading opening their email boxes in December because of the flood of unedited tomes flying in from eager authors who want to see their thirty day miracle sold.
I can tell you from personal experience that none of my NaNo novels were ready until at least six months after I finished them.
But if you’ve got the urge to write that book… go for it. In a few days thousands of writers are going to run off that cliff and leap into the unknown, grouping together for support and to encourage each other to get ‘er done.
Why not join them?