Monday, October 12, 2020

Prepping for NaNoWriMo 2020

A post by Mary Fan
Do you do National Novel Writing Month, aka NaNoWriMo? My answer for the past several years has been "sort of." In case there's anyone reading this who's unaware of how NaNoWriMo works, basically your goal is to write a 50,000-word novel during the month of November. There's an official website for it and everything, where you can connect with other writers and track your progress.

Back in April 2013, I apparently created an account to participate in "Camp NaNo", which is just an off-season version of NaNo, but only logged my progress once and then forgot about the whole thing. Since then, I've unofficially participated in several NaNos - and by that, I mean I've tried to write 50,000 words of a novel in the month of November (the first 50k words, that is... my manuscripts are way too long to be complete in that amount of space). While reporting my word counts on Facebook and Twitter, of course.

It's been a great way for me to kickstart whatever project I had next in my queue (I most recently did it in 2019 with Seize the Stars). Seeing all my writer friends boast about their word counts on social media turned out to be a fantastic motivator for me (though the fact that NaNo starts the day after Halloween has meant that several times, I've had to put up with said friends' bragging about all the words they wrote before noon while nursing a wicked hangover). It's an exercise in no-excuses, get-'er-done, just-keep-going writing, where the manuscript simply has to exist -- you can worry about how good it is later.

This year, I was low-key peer-pressured into re-joining the NaNo website officially (okay, a bunch of my friends were forming a group and I got jealous so I logged into my account for the first time in over seven years). After a summer spent in the indie publishing trenches, dealing with logistics, proofreading manuscripts, and arguing with printing companies, it'll be nice to just WRITE again. 

What am I going to write? That's something I'm still figuring out. I have a bunch of brainstorming notes, but all I can say so far is that it's going to be a YA fantasy set in an underwater realm (where people live in air pockets and use submarines to get around... no mermaids or anything). And there will be circuses. And pirates. And sea monsters. And... oh, hell if I know.

As soon as I get off Blogger, I'm going to try to figure that out so I'll have some idea what I'll be writing come November 1. And also watching some movies that take place underwater for procrasperation (where you procrastinate by doing things "for inspiration").

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