NaNoWriMo. No, it’s not a voodoo curse, although it might as well be. National Novel Writing Month, which begins on November 1 of each year, is when writers all around the world sit down at their keyboards will a common goal: to write 50,000 words by the end of the month.
The results don’t have to be a polished novel; on the contrary, the idea is to simply complete a first draft, no matter how rough it might be. The editing and polishing come later.
NaNoWriMo began in (1999) with 21 authors in the San Francisco Bay area. The latest figures available (2013) show the following:
NaNoWriMo 2013 counted 310,000 adult novelists, plus an additional 89,500 young writers. There were 651 Municipal Liaisons in 595 regions, 650 Come Write In libraries and bookstores, and 2,000 YWP classrooms. We also had a darn wonderful Night of Writing Dangerously, with the first non-staff keynote by NaNo-novelist Gennifer Albin.
Here in Rochester, you can hook up with other writers via the Facebook page.
I’m trying something new this year: my depression makes it hard for me to keep focused on my writing for a full month, and so I’ve never been able to complete a novel. So this year I’m going to capitalize on my mental state and incorporate it into the makeup of my protagonist.
I’ve always viewed depression as a challenge rather than an obstacle. I’m pretty sure I could have given in to it years ago and qualified for a Social Security disability pension, but that would be letting the depression win, and that’s something I’m not ready to do yet.
Instead, I’m channeling my depression into The Melancholy Vampire.
I’ll post the link when I’m done.