The road ends, but the journey continues...

Do You NaNo?

It’s NaNoWriMo time again, folks.

Last year, the challenge in doing my first NaNo was to just do it.  This year, it’s to just do it in a different genre.  Yep, it’s only my second time around for this event, but I feel like a seasoned pro.

What exactly is NaNoWriMo?  The clever acronym stands for: National Novel Writing Month.  This extravaganza takes place in November each year and is a wild journey of writing 50,000 words in 30 days.  That’s 1667 words each day.  Every day.  Of course, in my case that’s the bare minimum as I try to stockpile words to protect my Thanksgiving Holiday from the ravages of NaNo.  Since this year’s Turkey Day lands mercifully on the first of the last three days in November…I can finish by then, no problem!  Just in time for the kids to come home for the festivities and enjoy our feast in pure turkeyed-out bliss!

Last year’s approach was purely intuitive.  Because I mistakenly thought that one was to literally start writing the novel from scratch on November 1st, I surrounded myself with inspirational items based upon the theme/subject matter, did a few character sketches, a skeleton outline, collected beautiful words and did some prelim research.  Upon the stroke of midnight October 31st, 2012, I was ready for my first Nano; releasing words with wild abandon birthing those new characters into their world to self-actualize, act out the part and tell their story.

NaNo Prep for me this year includes delving more deeply into the nuts and bolts of Plot and Structure with oodles of planning.   While I’m a pantster at heart, the planner part of my psyche knows it needs to be more assertive for this year’s noveling experience.

What’s unique about this writing event is that while in the midst of such a singular art, there is this larger body of writers all engaging in the same endeavor, at the same time, attempting to reach that same goal of writing 50,000 words in 30 days.

Heady stuff.

This is an internet event with depth and pizzazz.  The NaNoWriMo website along with its sister site, The Office of Letters & Light, offers support in the form of pep talks from various authors, writers resources and plenty of forums to plug into however each individual writer sees fit.   Not to mention a treasure trove of ‘winners’ goodies presented by various writer related sponsors.

All for free.  And, all of this is run by a committed crew of crazy volunteers who are also writers.

Maybe that should read: all of this is run by a crew of crazy volunteers who are also writers and who should all be committed! (groan)

While I talk this up with friends, and send out announcements to all my ‘little list’ people hoping others will catch the buzz to just do it; this year I have my new website blog platform to spread the word and ask:

Do You NaNo?

Let me know.

It’s serious business to write, but it’s crazy awesome to NaNo with others in November!


  1. Jayne Bowers

    So far, I’ve written strictly nonfiction work, but lately I’ve been thinking about writing fiction, and your post has given me a bit of a nudge. Burning question: Did you finish the novel in November???

    • laura bruno lilly

      Welcome Jayne: So glad I could give you a ‘creative nudge!’ HA!
      And, yes, indeed, I did finish the novel at the end of Nov…and not just in NaNo’s 50k word count criteria for ‘winning.’
      I am currently working on my first read-through of what I call my ‘nano draft’ and getting it into shape for a beta-read sometime before Spring. To that end, I am trying out a new-to-me critique group in the area in the coming weeks.
      I already know some sections where it needs to be re-vised, expanded upon, etc, but the beauty of Nano for me is it helped me produce a completed mss to work on with a beginning-middle-end…I heartily recommend you jump into the world of fiction!!!!

  2. Spears Beckham

    Hi Laura,
    I am planning to focus on this topic for our next Flowriter meeting tomorrow night. Do you think you are going to be able to join us? If so I would love for you to speak about this.

    • laura bruno lilly

      Spears-Thanks for stopping by. Darn, wish I’d known sooner! I’ve got a schedule conflict with a prior commitment, but say hi to the group for me and let them know it’s not too late to sign up.

  3. Anna Scott Graham

    I’ll be cheering you on from the wings; have a terrific November, and a very good October getting ready! 🙂

    • laura bruno lilly

      Once a NaNoBuddy, always a NaNoBuddy! Thanks Anna. In memorium: peachypeace

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