|Not this year.|
I will not be among them.
I did win the NaNo challenge, to write a 50K word novel in November. Once. It was my first novel so I also locked it away where it could harm no one. Since then my attempts have left me with a word count widget saying that at my current pace I will finish my novel sometime right after the next ice age.
I dig the idea behind NaNo, I really do. Encouraging writing is very important and I applaud everyone trying to reach that finish line. The pace just does me in, though, leaving me with a visual of my inadequacy and inability to write 1600+ words everyday, especially during the holidays.
So what to do? My Twitter feed abounds with writerly advice, word wars, and all kinds of novel-writing frenzy. Here's what I'm planning this November.
1. Write 30 minutes
Sara's friend had the great advice to just write 30 minutes per day, no excuses. This I can do. This I will do, and so can you. Face it, we spend way more than 30 minutes just browsing the internet. Using the November writing frenzy to get into a regular, sustainable writing routine is a worthy goal that is achievable too.
This is my own personal goal and one that I think is just too much fun not to share. True, they aren't taking submissions right now, but that's OK. This way everyone will have time to actually edit what they've written (as you should anyways). If you have no idea what I'm talking about, read here and then go here and be prepared to spend the next few days reveling in the awesomeness that is Night Vale.
Also, a Night Vale episode is 700-1200 words. Yes, we can all accomplish that word count in a month.
3. Flash fiction challenges
Pick a favorite photo from Pinterest or wherever and write 250-1000 words inspired by it. It's easy and can give you a little jolt of inspiration to hopefully pull you out of any writing doldrums. I'll be tweeting and posting some of my favorites throughout the month.
4. Find a crit group
I think this should almost be the first challenge, because if you are really going to be a writer, then you need to have some readers. You need feedback. You need someone to tell you what works, what doesn't, what is confusing, and so on. It's scary, I know, but necessary. Online or IRL, try to reach out to other writers. Don't just choose someone who will tell you everything is great. As gut-churning as it can be, that constructive criticism will help you hone your craft.
How about you? Are you NaNo-ing this year or choosing your own adventure?
Note: A big thanks to Sara for the title of this post.