The first time I heard ‘NaNoWriMo’, I was bamboozled. I had no idea what it meant. I was so scared to ask its meaning to a bunch of amazing people I met in an online literary community.
But I did, being mindful of the fact that I may have sounded a little bit stupid.
And once I learned about what NaNoWriMo actually meant for, I embarked upon a journey into the Internet. I watched vlogs, read articles and received some quite good tips that enhanced my writing skills.
Who knew it would be so exciting?
So, I’m here to share with all of you what exactly is NaNoWriMo.
What is NaNoWriMo? NaNoWriMo is the short form for the National Novel Writing Month. It is an annual event in which all the participants race to finish writing a novel of 50,000 words or more in just 30 days during November.
The rules are simple. Starting after midnight local time on November 1st, writers begin drafting a new novel (or a fresh rewrite of an old one) and must attempt to finish the novel before November 30th. Planning and outlining the story beforehand is encouraged, but continuing a current work-in-progress is not.
Why should I participate in NaNoWriMo? Well, NaNoWriMo is the perfect opportunity for writers to stop procrastinating and start working on their planned projects. It also helps in improving your writing speed and style as it inadvertently pressurizes you to think of brand new ideas and writing in different ways.
Almost the majority of the writing community participates in this event, so you’re not left alone! You’re tagging along with writers just like you who are racing against time to finish their projects!
How can I participate in NaNoWriMo? Is there some sort of official registration or something? There isn’t some sort of flashy registration you have to go through. You can take up NaNoWriMo as a personal endeavour or as a medium of competition between people present in a community!
To track your word count, check your progress and stay disciplined to this event, you can create an account on www.nanowrimo.org, fill out the criteria required (Is your story a novel or a short story? Is it drafted or in progress?) and begin your journey!
What should I write about? Honestly, I would leave that up to you. It’s your story, write it the way you want to, because, well, you’re the writer, duh.
However, if you’re taking up NaNoWriMo as a personal challenge with some pressured ideas and a stressful deadline, try laying a foundation for your story to help the process become easier for you.
- Find a story you absolutely love. Write the book you love, not the one you think you should write.
- Understand what people like to read. Have a target audience to cater to.
- Come up with strong characters. They do leave an impact upon your reader.
The next step – outline your story.
- Write a logline about your story. A logline is basically a summary about your story in two to three lines only. You can learn about writing loglines here. Stick to that in order to be precise about what is actually the main genre of your story.
- Consider writing a chapter-by-chapter outline. It helps you in the progression of your plot.
- Plot your most important scenes beforehand. They are considered to be the game changers of your story, so take care of those first, then worry about any small details or loopholes (that is, if there are any).
- Let your characters determine the story. They are the ones responsible for all the events that occur in the story. All the stuff in the story happens because of them.
Do you have any tips for NaNoWriMo?
Three only 😊
- Treat your writing time as a job. Set aside a certain amount of time each day, whether half an hour or two hours, to write — and then own up for it.
- Don’t aim for writing one chapter a day. Aim for writing as many words as possible in the given time that you have allotted to yourself for writing.
- Set ground rules in advance of November. Prioritise your tasks, give some time for writing, be a little disciplined about the time and be motivated to finish off your story.
Help! I need to have some sort of rehearsal for this! Not to worry! To prepare for NaNoWriMo, you can simply opt for Camp NaNoWriMo.
What is Camp NaNoWriMo? Camp NaNoWriMo is NaNoWriMo but in July. It is an opportunity presented to all writers to experience how the writing event is actually like. It can also be used to get yourself out of procrastination, sit down (or stand up) and simply write.
(Psst! It’s still going on! You can ahead and participate with your own word count. It’s not necessary that you have to stick to 50,000 words only. You can go from 15,000 to even 100,000!)
This is my first time in NaNoWriMo and I’m pretty excited. I scrapped AMG (A Misfit’s Gravity) and I plan to write a completely revised version of it named My Hopeless Chain Reaction or MHCR.
I hope I was able to answer any of your doubts regarding NaNoWriMo. If you’re planning to participate, good luck! Go ahead and drop a like right below if you liked this post! And if you have any thoughts on NaNoWriMo, do comment below. I would love to hear what you have to say!
Stay safe and healthy!
Love, PJ 💖