October is almost over and that means life is about to get a little crazy. Not only is Christmas just that much closer, but National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) begins November 1st.
I first heard about NaNo last year. I stumbled across the website one day and found the concept intriguing. Starting November 1st at midnight, people all over the world start their novels. The idea is to write 50,000 words in thirty days. There is no entry fee to sign up and no prize other than the satisfaction of completing.
Even though I have always written, the last several years had been filled with weak attempts at accomplishing anything. I was aware of the LDStorymakers conference and really wanted to attend. But I decided that I couldn't travel all that way and spend the money to attend unless I could prove that I was a writer. But when I tried writing, I would get stuck on the first few chapters. They were edited to death; the stories never finished.
NaNo changed that for me. I approached the challenge with a scene in my head but no idea what the plot was. I turned off my internal editor and wrote. I wrote almost every day, during every spare minute I could find. The characters became alive in my head and their story fascinated me. My family became caught up in the challenge and asked what my word count was at every time I sat at the computer. They made dinner and didn't complain when I stayed up way too late and acted grumpy in the morning. The best thing about NaNo 2006 was the finished book. This same book is almost ready to be submitted to a publisher.
So now I am gearing up for NaNo 2007. I'm looking forward to pounding out the story and seeing where the characters take me. It is freeing to turn off the part of the brain that wants to correct every mistake as it is made. In NaNo, the mistakes don't matter. It is just about getting the story down. I can't wait.