For those of you who don’t know, there’s this nifty website which has dubbed November to be “National Novel Writing Month.” Essentially, this place tries to get aspiring authors to finally finish that project they’ve been kicking around for years. The goal is for participants to write 50,000 words (which is a short novel, but a novel–the Alcatraz books are around 50k) during the month of November.
I first heard about this project when I was unpublished, but after I’d already completed a number of books. I didn’t really need the ‘kick in the pants’ the program offered, but I could immediately see the value. The first thing that I think holds back a lot of aspiring authors is their internal editor. They aren’t willing to be bad at writing long enough to get good at writing. They never finish anything because they work so long on the first few chapters of a book that they give up on it.
Revision is important, and can be a difficult skill to learn. However, the only way to learn to plot a novel over tens of thousands of words and hundreds of pages is to WRITE a novel that long and see first-hand what it takes. So, I support the idea of writing a book as quickly as possible as an exercise. Doing so will teach you a lot about plotting and about writing consistently.
Anyway, I tend to post my wordcounts each year for readers of mine who might be participating in NaNoWriMo. You can play ‘beat the pro’ if you feel like it. This year, you have a solid chance of being able to defeat me, since I’ve got to do the Mistborn 3 copyedit this month, and that will suck away one of my four weeks of writing time.
Right now, I’ve written 19,251 words since November first, with a forecast of slowing down later in the month. Can you beat me? (Also, here’s my profile if you want to buddy me. I don’t know what happened to my old profile–I guess it got deleted or something, which is sad, since I’d had it since before I was published.)