It’s almost November, and many writers are already stocking up on energy bars, warming up their coffee mugs, and gearing up for National Novel Writing Month—NaNoWriMo! This event, which has become overwhelmingly popular over the past few years, has a simple premise: Try to write the first draft of a novel (50,000 words) in just thirty days. Though it is a huge commitment of time and effort, NaNoWriMo can be the kick in the pants some writers need to get motivated and get writing. Some NaNoWriMo books have even been successfullypublished! At the very least, you’ll have great source material for several short stories. So…should you give NaNoWriMo a try?
4 Signs You’re Ready To Try NaNoWriMo
1. You want to write a novel. Do you have an amazing plot idea for a novel? Have you written a short story with the potential to grow into book length? Succeeding at NaNoWriMo will definitely be easier if you have an outline for your novel before you start writing.
2. You work well under pressure. We all know that writers and deadlines don’t always make the best combination—especially writers who are already overly busy or prone to procrastination. But if you’re a writer who thrives under pressure or who needs specific goals to do your best work, a deadline-driven challenge like NaNoWriMo is perfect for you! NaNoWriMo participants need strong time management skills and the ability to stay sane while attempting to meet deadlines.
3. You want to connect with other writers. Part of the fun of participating in NaNoWriMo is joining the community of writers who are all working toward the same goal. Chat rooms will put you in touch with writers all around the globe, and a NaNoWriMo home region will connect you with other participants in your area. NaNoWriMo also provides volunteer mentors who offer support and tips.
4. You want to explore your writing skills and limits. Participants shouldn’t go into NaNoWriMo expecting an easy way into the publishing world. Remember, your manuscript won’t be a polished best seller come November 30th. You’ll still have weeks and months of editing, proofreading, and rewriting ahead before your manuscript is publishing-ready. But you will have tested and—hopefully—strengthened your writing skills. And even more importantly, you’ll have taken a very big first step to getting your book completed!
If You Do Decide To Take On NaNoWriMo, We Can Help!
We’ve seen loads of writers dive into National Novel Writing Month, and we cheer them on all the way! From the moment you decide to take on NaNoWriMo, there are steps you should take to point yourself in the right direction. Check out these helpful Writer’s Relief articles!
And if you don’t want to participate in NaNoWriMo but still want to find a fun writing challenge, try these alternatives!
QUESTION: Are you going to participate in NaNoWriMo this year? How did you decide?