Well, it’s that time of the year again. Yes, it’s time for all writers to unite and begin the painstaking task of creating an entire novel in a single month. It’s a wonderful, horrifying kind of daunting task that the faint of heart and easy to stress probably should be wary of taking on. Let’s dive into it, shall we?
Nanowrimo, also known as National Novel Writing Month, is an event created for authors everywhere to take on the task of creating a 50,000 word novel in the short span of a month. To some, this may not sound like such a difficult task but to those of us who have attempted this, and the few magnificent people who have successfully completed it, it’s something that’s not to be taken lightly. A lot of the time people are committing to 1,500 or more words a day. Let’s just take a moment and let that sink in.
For thirty straight days.
Now, this could vary, you don’t have to write a solid 1,500 every day. You could write 500 one day and then add an extra thousand to some other day. There’s also the fact that, sometimes, peoples novels are longer than 50,000 words. That’s the bare minimum for a novel to be a novel. Here, take a look at this nifty little chart.
If you’re writing fiction, while the bare minimum is 50,000 words people generally should try to aim for something between 60,000-80,000 words. This is the general vicinity for any type of young adult novel with the exception of novels like Twilight which is above and beyond the 110,000-word count.
Now, from all this, it may seem like a daunting thing. Maybe you’re reading this and you’re thinking “What? More than 50,000 words in a month? More than 1,500 words a day? That’s insane.”
Okay, okay, okay yes it may seem scary but don’t focus on that part of Nanowrimo. It probably sounds like I’m contradicting myself with this post but the beginning part is something we all need to learn about in order to fully get a great experience out of it. So, now that we’ve got that out of the way let’s move onto the beautiful part of Nanowrimo and the amazing community that revolves around it.
Maybe you have a work that’s already in one of the categories above but have been wanting to possibly expand upon it. Make it larger and longer, maybe? Well, that’s why Nanowrimo is so great and this is where some people forget a very important fact!
It’s not just for starting a new story.
Many people also use the month to try and knuckle down to get other projects their currently working on done. Have a work that’s collecting dust but you dream about finishing it? Well, here’s your month to do just that! Worried about not being strict enough to make it throughout the month? Have no fear! There are forums and conversations with tons of supportive people most likely in the same boat as you. There’s also a way to get yourself a writing buddy or two in which you can talk and help each other out.
Nanowrimo may seem like a scary or daunting thing to take on, especially if you’re new to the writing scene, but don’t forget that there’s a vast community of thousands of people out there just like you! There are also plenty of things beyond the people to help keep you motivated in your quest of coming out of November with a novel.
Nanowrimo also has a number of sponsors and prizes for those who do manage to hit that 50,000-word goal. One of the main ones I love is that you get a great discount on Scrivener, the story writing application I personally love to death. There’s also a percentage off on Dabble, another app that I’m also keen on. Dabble is also doing a thing where you can use it up to December 1 I believe for free if you’re writing for Nanowrimo. It’s really great and, if you’re looking for a good writing application I recommend checking it out!
Also, let’s not forget that you receive tons of amazing advice every day from people in your mailbox on your Nanowrimo account along with some great inspiration to keep moving forward. So what if you don’t finish writing your entire novel within a month, you’ll come out of November with something much better. A huge community full of supportive people who all love the same craft you do! Personally, that’s what I love most about Nanowrimo and I can tell you right now, there have been a few times where I haven’t quite hit that 50,000 in a month either so don’t feel upset or embarrassed.
The month is for you to find your story. It’s for you to grow as a writer and for your work to also grow and that growth can take on any number of forms whether it be a completed novel or simply a list of characters you plan on having within the story. Either way, it’s still a form of progress.
So, for final words don’t go into the month of November dreading Nanowrimo or feeling anxious over whether or not you’ll be able to write 50,000 words in the span of a month. Go into it excited to enter an amazing community of people and ready to make some form of progress on your amazing story.