Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Another NaNoWrimo Pep Talk


NaNoWriMo starts in a few hours. If you aren't aware of what NaNoWriMo is, you're out of luck. Also: pleased to meet you. NOW RUN.

Now that that is out of the way, I'd like to say that though I will not be fully participating this year (I mean, I will be writing this November, and probably more than usual, but I'm not going to try 50,000 words again for the third time this year), I am still very excited for November first to come along. I will now explain why in a list, because as you're probably aware of by now--if you've been reading this blog for a while--I like making lists.

  1. About 100% of my writing friends have been made somehow or another because of NaNoWriMo. While I meet ("meet") a lot of people online during November, only a few usually remain by the end of the month, and then I have these lovely writing buddies to clutch onto hang out with the rest of the year. 
  2. I would most definitely not like writing as much as I do now had my mom not introduced me to NaNoWriMo in 2010, so I suppose it's natural for me to feel excited about NaNo even though I am not exactly participating. 
I have won four of these insane competitions in the past two years, the novels themselves coming out as broken specimens that get better in writing each time I participate but are still utter junk-piles (if that sentence made any sense the first time though let me know). And so excuse me if you think I'm not qualified to give NaNoWriMo advice, but here goes:

Do not be afraid to fail. 

This seems like an easy enough thing at first, until suddenly you're 20K words into this story and you're invested in your characters and their lives, and suddenly you don't want to make them do this and that because it will alter the plot ever-so-slightly. 

 Let me tell you a story.

The first NaNo I ever got serious about (the July version of Camp) and won I sucked at. Utterly sucked. But let me tell you, it was fun to write. I loved it for a while, and once I was finished I promptly realized how much it sucked and tossed it in the trash bin. 

Everything aside, that sucky manuscript made me a better writer. That is why I do NaNoWriMo--even multiple times a year. It makes me a better writer. It's fun. It gets me to loosen up and try stuff I wouldn't normally. 

Don't be afraid afraid to fail, guys. It's one of the best snippets of writing advice I've ever gotten.

Goodbye October, and Hello November.

1 comment:

caitlin said...

I'm not participating this year either. That said, I do love the the feeling of all these writers around the world coming together.

So I will be working on my novella more than usual this month. I'm just not going to worry about how many words I do or don't get.

btw, Copper Heart is one of my favorite stories on Figment. Just putting that out there.