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Thursday, October 29, 2015


NaNoWriMo time is fast approaching again--for those of you who are unfamiliar with the term, it stands for National Novel Writing Month. The idea behind it is to write 50,000 words in the month of November. I'm not sure why November since once Thanksgiving week hits, writing time is hard to come by, but this is when it happens every year.

I've tried to do NaNoWriMo a few different years, but always end up failing miserably. Part of the problem is that I am not a fast draft writer. It makes me bonkers. The go back and flesh it out later part? Totally doesn't work for me. As I'm writing, I'm getting ideas. I need to turn them over in my mind and make decisions. Going back to it even a month later (and let's face it, December is a difficult month to write at all because of the holidays and shopping and baking and events, etc.) means those thoughts and maybes are gone. Write it down? Um, why don't I just mull it over then and there and decide whether or not to use it?

Some writers love fast drafting. They love going back later to layer emotion and all the rest of it in. I don't. Once the story is told (and fast drafting is telling the story), I want to finish and be done with it. I don't want to spend another five months revising. I want to work on the next story. This is also why I don't do extensive pre-planning. Once the story is told I am ready to be done with it. It doesn't matter if it's a 40 page outline or a fast draft.

So what inevitably happens with NaNoWriMo is that I fall farther behind on word count every day. At the end of one week, It seems hopeless to ever catch up. This is usually about the time I quit. Sometimes I don't even make it a week before the hopelessness drowns me.

And despite this, I'm still contemplating whether or not to put myself back into this hell. I'm leaning toward no right now, but we'll see.