Sunday 2 November 2014


As I'm sure you all know, November is NaNoWriMo - National Novel Writing Month. They encourage people to write a 50,000 word novel (or start to a novel) over the course of the month, which means writing an average of 1.667 words a day, or thereabouts.

This has always been something I've vaguely thought about joining in. Not with any idea that it would result in a perfectly-formed work of art, but in order to make myself actually get on and write something.

Well... it's November 2nd and I haven't written anything. That's partly because I sent 9.30am-7.30pm yesterday baking for a party I was holding yesterday (which was super fun) but also because my enthusiasm had already waned, when I realised I hadn't planned anything properly. I did buy a beautiful new notebook, so...

Have you ever done NaNoWriMo? Would you? And did you know that Water for Elephants and The Night Circus began as NaNoWriMo projects, along with a whole bunch of other published novels?


  1. I have done it for the last two years and was very proud with myself that I completed the challenge - alas I have done nothing with the drafts since finishing them. I have to say that it is an exhausting process and I never wanted to read my work as I had enough by the end.

  2. Never done it but have also never felt the need to become a novelist! I think its a wonderful discipline for people who do want to write, though.

  3. I haven't but my son did last year - he got finished in the time, but said that he would have to do so much going over it and revising it that it would have been best to do it at his own pace and like Elaine he hasn't actually done anything with it since. But at least you got a nice notebook - you can never have too many notebooks.... :)

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  5. If you are publishing a book just for the sake of publishing a book it won't work. It must have feeling. You must have a reason to write.

  6. I have done Nano four times. Twice, success, once meh, and now this time, am nearly on track except I should be writing now instead of commenting on your blog, but since you asked....

    I've been published several times but not for a while. I've been thinking through this plot for many a long year, and I've written Part 1 of it, which is set in Fontainebleau from 1599-1602, and have been revising and rewriting and editing for two years, but it still isn't right because my heroine feels rather in absentia. So this year, I decided I'd get on with part of the planned trilogy, just vomit everything onto the paper just as I tell my students not to (proper published writers sometimes call this discovery writing, but I think of it as more akin to a bad bout of salmonella) and it is helpful because I'm learning more about this rather passive seeming woman who actually has to end up as a Jamesella Bondette of the Baroque world.

    Nanowrimo is a very encouraging way of getting words onto the computer, but then comes the hard part of turning the salmonella by-product into something that other people might actually find coherent and amusing.

  7. I've written on paragraph f my terrible novel featuring supernatural.creatures, and historical characters with a shaky grasp.on what was actually happening then. (I figure once you throw a werewolf into the mix all bets off.) . My son finished when he was 11 but never showed me what he wrote.

  8. I've started NaNoWriMo twice and failed to complete. Every year I say I'll do better next year, get some planning done beforehand, book some time off work, but as yet it's not happened. One day maybe.


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