Have you ever thought of writing a novel but you put it off, and off, and off, for a future date when you'll be inspired to sit down and churn out the next world-class bestseller? I have to admit I'm a procrastinator, and while I do love to write, it's hard to sit down and force myself fill up that blank word document. But then I found out that November doesn't just bring Thanksgiving and irritatingly-early Christmas preparation: it is also the month when you write your novel. In one month. And yes, it's possible!
National Novel Writing Month was founded by Chris Baty in San Francisco, where the nonprofit organization is still based. It started in 1999 and has been going strong ever since. The deal is you sign up at the website and create an account. There, you can make a little social-media profile of your authorly self or leave it bare bones and create your novel. If you're stuck for a title, "Title Pending" is a favorite of mine.
Once you've got that all set up, all you have to do is write your novel. It's 50,000 words in 30 days, which comes out to about 1,666 words a day (approximately 2 pages single spaced). On the way, you'll have a support group of pep talks emailed straight to your inbox. You can also go to Nano write-ins at coffee houses, where the peer-pressure of keyboard keys clacking away makes you write.
If you manage to overcome procrastination, the distractions of work, children and those other little social interactions and hit the 50,000 mark by midnight November 30th, what do you get? Well, you'll have written your very own novel and you'll receive a free proof copy of it to show off to friends and relatives and people who said you couldn't do it. You also get a nice little certificate to print out and decals for your websites that say "Winner!".
Teens Can Nano Too
For teenagers who are interested, there's also the Young Writer's Program, which specially caters to teens!
At the Foster City Library, we're hosting four write-ins this November every Tuesday of the month from 7pm to 8pm. Feel free to drop by and join us for refreshments and support!
Jenna V. loves to write, but loves having a deadline even more.