Welcome to November, fellow book lovers! The start of November is also the start of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), when writers from all over the world huddle over their computers or notebooks and set to work writing 50 000 words over the course of 30 days.
Yup. A novel in a month.
I first signed up for NaNoWriMo last November, because I had just had a baby 2 months earlier and wanted to get back into the habit of writing on a daily basis. It was tough, with a lot of late nights, but I did it, and it was exactly what I needed to get myself motivated again. The feeling I got when I "won" NaNo was incredible, even if many people I know didn't quite understand why I was so excited about "winning" something that doesn't come with a prize.
Except that it does. The prize is my novel. Yes, it's a first draft that is nowhere near being ready to publish, and it may not even be done, but it's FIFTY THOUSAND WORDS that I didn't have down before the month began. It's more words than some people write in a year. It's a month of making new friends, testing my dedication to my writing, learning new things, and feeling that sense of accomplishment that comes with hard work.
Even if I don't make it to the goal of 50 000 words, I will still have accomplished something. Last year I participated in a write in at the Random House offices and met the person who convinced me to start this blog. I met other writers. Over the course of a month, I got up the courage to call myself a writer.
Not someone who "wants to write." A WRITER. Someone who WRITES. Period.
So even though I started my November 1st in an Emergency Room with a 4 year old Iron Man who took a face plant on the driveway and ripped open his chin, split his lip, and knocked a tooth loose, I'm ready.
And I promise I'll get started on my novel that has no defined structure as of yet.
As soon as I finish this post. Or catch up on some sleep after last night's 3 hours.