Ahhh its that time of year again. Where hundreds of thousands of author hopefuls and author vets take on the hefty challenge of churning out a 50,000 word novel in just 30 days! Oh what a magical feat it is.
I have been taking on this challenge every year since 2015 and the furthest I’ve trekked on this wizardly word quest is 15,000 words during the 2017 season. So basically, I didn’t even make it past the threshold that ends Act I. This season, I plan to make it all the way home with the magical elixir filled to the brim with the first draft of a psychological fantasy I have been outlining all summer.
The goal of NaNoWriMo is to well, WRITE! Don’t overthink the plot. Don’t stop to edit. Don’t stop to research. Just, write your story. The motto for NaNo is quantity over quality. Now this may sound foreign to those of you who have a difficult time turning off their internal editors. I know that has been my own personal hangup on this journey to 50K for the past three years. I am a perfectionist and chronic over-thinker, two things that are creativity kryptonite and should be stored away in a locked box sunken down to the deepest depths of the ocean.
I admit staring at a blank page and a zero word count can be intimidating, but it is not an impossible task to take on with dedication, good planning and coffee, lots of coffee (or tea if that’s what you prefer). The important thing is to trust yourself and take risks. Start that novel that’s been spinning around in your head, because you never know, it can be the next bestseller fresh out of NaNo.
Fun Fact: Marissa Meyer, author of the Lunar Chronicles, penned the first drafts of “Cinder”, “Cress” and “Scarlet” during NaNoWriMo in the SAME month while Erin Morgenstern, author of the “Night Circus” wrote this beautiful tale over the course of three NaNo’s.
Who else will be strapping on their writing boots to take on this year’s NaNoWriMo journey?