National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) is a free, internet-based, creative writing project that was launched on July 1, 1999 for writers ages 13 and up. Writers who participate attempt to write 50,000 words by the end of November, or, 1,667 words a day for 30 days.
Reaching 50,000 words may seem like a lot in such a short amount of time, but NaNoWriMo will help you get a start on your novel through goal setting and connecting with other writers. Participating writers create a profile, announce their novel, then get straight to writing!
Those who reach 50,000 words within the span of the event are considered the “winners” and receive prizes from NaNoWriMo’s partners. Writers can participate from the comfort of their own homes, regional write-ins, or even their own schools! Here at Kettle Moraine School for Arts and Performance (KM Perform), NaNoWriMo seminars are available to students of all focus areas.
A common setback for participants may be that they have trouble writing consistently. But luckily, NaNoWriMo encourages them to set up a writing routine to help them find the motivation to keep working.
Another problem writers often run into is finishing a full draft. Since NaNoWriMo takes place in such a short amount of time, there really isn’t much time for overthinking and editing your novel as you go. Although a full novel is around 75,000 words, 50,000 words typed over the month of November covers roughly ⅔ of the first rough draft for their novel. That’s a lot of progression in just a month!
Like most people, writers may find themselves procrastinating because of outside distractions that keep them from their writing. To complete about 1,667 words per day by the end of November, writers need to disconnect from bad habits like procrastination and giving into outside distractions.
NaNoWriMo is an efficient way for writers to create a novel and get a large majority of it completed. It creates a social environment for writers to connect with one another. Participants are motivated to finish their novel from the start to end of November and will be awarded a special prize if they do so. Through NaNoWriMo, writers are faced with a time crunch that encourages them to break through setbacks like finishing a full draft, writing a full draft, and of course, procrastination. If you’re interested in this event, try it out next year and see what you can create in just one month!