"The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible." -Vladimir Nobokov

Monday, October 21, 2013

My Plans for Nanowrimo 2013!

Hello friends! I am taking a quick break from Letters to October (don't worry, I'm going to catch up, I promise!) to tell you about my plans for Nanowrimo 2013. For those who don't know, Nanowrimo stands for National Novel Writing Month, where the goal is to write 50,000 words in 30 days. The traditional month for novel writing is November, but the organization has several other months set up for noveling as well. Now that we're all on the same page, here's what you need to know about my participation in Nanowrimo this year:

1. I will be attempting the full 50,000 words, but not in novel form. My plan is to write a series of short stories instead of going for a single story. I have always been bad at seeing even the shortest of stories through to their end, and I am really trying to get out of the habit of abandoning them halfway. I think Laini Taylor says this best in one of my favorite essays on writing:
"Sitting down to the work is the start, but there's more. SARK talked about developing a "habit of completion" and this is a VERY important habit! For me, there's no feeling like finishing something! Getting through a first draft! Typing "the end" at the end! It's the embodiment of the satisfaction of crossing items off a list once you've accomplished them. Completion is a habit well worth the agony of developing. And I think, like any habit, it gets easier. It gets, you know, habitual. The more things you finish, the more you know you can do it -- and not onlycan but will. I'm hoping that this grows continually easier throughout my writing life, that my habits will imprint themselves deeper and deeper."
That's what I'm aiming for with Nanowrimo this year: forming a habit of completion. As Ms. Taylor so aptly points out, it's not going to be easy, but since when has Nanowrimo EVER been easy?

2. It's impossible to know how many short stories I will have at the end of November. The most important thing to me is that they are complete first drafts, so that I have smaller chunks to work with when I start revising in December. Ideally, I'd like to be able to send the revised versions to literary magazines, but that is a little too far in the future to really think about at this point. 

3. According to the Nanowrimo forums, I'm classified as a "rebel", since I am writing a series of unconnected shorts rather than a novel. If you are planning to do something non-traditional this November, I highly recommend you check them out! Remember: November is an arbitrary month chosen by the Office of Letters and Light for noveling purposes, but you should use it in the way that you think is most productive for you as a writer!

4. And, if you're planning on participating in Nanowrimo at all, feel free to add me as a writing buddy!

Finally, if you're looking for daily inspiration during Nanowrimo, check out these two Youtubers, who are both doing daily videos throughout November:

1. Katytastic: Super fun/energetic, experienced, VERY motivational, and hilarious. 

2. Abbythemuggle: Talented videographer, novice Nano-er, makes personal, relatable videos that have such a great atmosphere!

Well, that's all for now! You may not be hearing from me very much during November, but I would love to hear about your thoughts/experiences with Nanowrimo. Oh! And keep your eye out for the rest of Letters to October! 

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