Saturday, 3 November 2012

NaNoWriMo 2012

I'm sure a lot of you have been seeing this title around quite a bit, especially recently. But what is it? For those of you that don't know, NaNoWriMo is short for National Novel Writing Month, and it is basically a competition to try and write a 50,000 worded novel in the month of November. It occurs every year, and as the time goes on, more and more people join.

Now I first joined NaNoWriMo in 2010 - I'd heard a lot about it, but had never participated, and considering I read and write a lot anyway, I thought, Why not? I got loads of my friends to join in and do it with me, but a lot of people said I'd never stick with it (yeah, I'm kind of well-known for writing half of a story then stopping and starting a new one). So what did I do, being the stubborn 14 year old I was? I stuck at it. And I did win, with completing the 50,000 word goal a few days before the end of November. However, after I did that, I said to myself that I wouldn't participate for the next few years, considering I've got my GCSE's, then A-Levels straight after. And last year I didn't do it - but this year, I'm back again, and just as hooked as ever.

I think one of the things that makes NaNoWriMo a special kind of competition is that there isn't a physical prize at the end - sure, you can print off a certificate, and you can even buy a t-shirt (yeah, I did in 2010!) but there isn't a prize of chocolates or books or anything once you've finished. All you get at the end if the knowledge that you have managed to write a novel, from start to finish, in a month - less time than the majority of published authors. And the beauty of it is that it doesn't even have to be a good novel - you could write pages of nonsense, but it'd still count, because it isn't about the quality, it's about reaching that goal. I can tell you, although I thought my book was fantastic back in 2010, I now look back and see that it was a pile of rubbish. But I'm still proud, because I did finish.

You may think that this means you'll be able to cheat - because you're determined the winner once you have entered into the site a piece of writing that is over 50,000 words long. So, realistically, you could spend years writing a novel, and then just copy and paste it in in November. And yes, you could do this. But again, it isn't about the material gain; it's the personal gain. If you know you've cheated, then you haven't really won anything at all. It's purely a competition with yourself, and I think it's such a unique and wonderful idea. It unites a whole world of different people together, trying to reach the same goal.

Now this year, although I'm ahead of schedule at the moment, I'm not planning to try and win. I have a lot of exams and things to do, so I don't have as much time to write as I did two years ago. But I'm still going to try my best. If you want to participate, and if you already are participating, then please feel free to add me as Ninasaur on

Stats at the end of Day 2
Chapters: prologue, three completed chapters
Pages: 11
Words: 5,488
Average Words Per Day: 1,829
Target Word Count: 50,000
Words Remaining: 44,512

I hope to see you all over at the website! Wish me luck!

- Nina

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