National Novel Writing Month - lovingly referred to as NaNoWriMo - is a writing challenge where each participant strives to write a manuscript of at least 50,000 words in only 30 days. It is not a contest. It is not a game and there are no prizes, except for some fierce bragging rights. Of course, since it is a personal challenge, each writer can set his/her own writing goals for the month, but generally speaking, it is the lofty aspiration of finishing the first draft of a full-length manuscript in a genre of your choosing.
Now, who would choose to participate in such a crazy venture? Yeah, good question. Crazy writers, that's who. But looking past our questionable sanity, there is a dynamic and steadfast camaraderie amongst NaNoWriMo-ers. Many people participate in virtual writing rooms that stay open 24/7 and some track their writing progress on sites like Pacemaker Press, where each person states their goal and updates his/her progress daily. And some just join the hashtag on twitter and celebrate one another's word count for the day. Whatever you choose as your level of participation beyond the actual writing of the manuscript is up to you - but the RAH RAH of fellow writers is really what makes this experience unique. It's why there is one particular month that is deemed the National Novel Writing Month - so that all writers can be on the same page (pun intended) and work together, even if separated by miles and time zones.
As the blog title indicates, NaNoWriMo is not for the faint of heart. But it's not about winning or losing. It's about attempting something totally wild with a community of equally wild creatives. It's about support and encouragement. And it's about setting a goal and doing your best to stick to it.
So best of luck to all NaNoWriMo-ers - we're rooting for you! We're cheering you on. We are writing with you. And we know you can do it!