Hey, there. Long time no see. However, this is precisely why I came back now. You see, NaNoWriMo is starting tomorrow, and because I have not written much the last few weeks, I will take up that challenge to get back in the groove.
NaNoWriMo is short for National Novel Writer’s Month. It has grown international for a long time now, though. The idea is simple: Finish a novel of 50,000 words or more during November.
People who join the official site may even win prices.
While I will not join the official site (because I’m modifying the rules to better suite my writing style), I still aspire to write 50,000 words by November, 30th 2016 and call that participating in NaNoWriMo for simplicity’s sake.
Indeed, and a proud one at that.
The reason I plan to deviate from the official rules is simple: I do not write stories that long. In my mind, stories have to earn the amount of time they may take from us and I prefer those that give more than they take. Very few stories need or deserve to be that long. Dune needs it for its complexity, so does War and Peace due to the size and diversity of its cast. The Harry Potter books earn it by the wildness of the imagination displayed and by having each book span a year. There are more, these are just examples.
I tend toward the shorter end of tales. I have a story to tell and I do not like to meander around doing so. Maybe it’s just my own preference for reading short fiction informing my own writing here, but in short, a story of more than 10,000 words is a rarity with me just because that tends to be more than enough room for me to finish any story I decide to do.
So, instead of writing one novel of 50k words, I commit to write 50k words during the month of November. This does include all uncommissioned writing I do that month. It does not, however, include any commissioned writting as well as writing not directly related to book and/or story writing.
So, blog posts do not count, neither does any writing not intended to be published.
This means, I plan to write about 1,800 words per day. That is more words than my longest published piece of fiction at about 1,200. It is, however, less than some of my non-fiction books that were written chapter by chapter as opposed to one piece of story as you get with my fiction (ignoring the notable exception of Sleeper Hit.
I expect this to result in several pieces of flash fiction (probably enough to do another collection), finishing my English novelette Boy, as well as finishing my German novelette Neanderthalensis. As always, pieces of flash fiction I do in that time will also be available here on this blog, unless this is prevented by a contract (I will write at least one flash intended for a multi-author Christmas anthology).
So, by tomorrow, there will be a counter showing my current progress in reaching 50k words. And the occassional flash fiction piece on this blog.
Why Am I Doing This?
Let me put it this way: Writing 1,800 words per day on top of everything else I do essentially means that for one month, I will go full-time. I will have to find ways to have enough time to write thise much every day. I will have to devote time specifically to writing as if I went to an office to do so.
This will be a new experience for me and I am very interested, if I can pull this off.
In essence, I am about to decide wether I go all-in in the future, using the next month for a template.