You Knew I Was Crazy, Right?

I can’t believe I’m doing this. I have a thousand compelling reasons not to do it. My husband and kids may pack up and head for the hills when they find out. I shake my head in disbelief that I would even consider it. But I’m going to do it, so there.

I am, of course, talking about NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month 30 days of novel writing madness. It kicks off in 22 days. EEK!

I must be crazy. I should not do NaNoWriMo because…

I’m already at work on one novel. The goal of NaNoWriMo is to write a novel from start to finish during the month of November. No fair bringing work to the table that we’ve already started. So I’ll either need to put this baby to bed for a month while I work on something new, or I will have to work on them concurrently. We have already established that I am nuts, so guess which one I’m going to have to do.

I scrapbook in November. I do the family scrapbook every, single November. The last one I did contained 600 photos and took me three weeks. I can do it in December, I suppose, but that means that I can’t give it to Nonni as a Christmas present. Maybe I should just stop taking photos of the kids.

Squish has grown weary of the “Play quietly while Mommy writes” routine. If I’m going to get this done, I’m going to have to carve out time in new places. I don’t need to eat, right? Or go to the bathroom? Think of all the time I will save if I make the switch to diapers!

I am an early bird. As in, I make my nest as soon as the sun goes down and don’t stir forth until daylight. No night owl here. I’m not so good at stretching my evening into hours of productivity. I do my best writing (and everything else) early in the day, and then my brain is toast. Hmm. Two novels and a scrapbook. I can swing it, right?

Oh, yeah. I have a little blog. I love my blog. I have used it as a daily exercise in self-discipline for the last year or so.  I can’t completely abandon it. So two novels, a scrapbook, and a blog. I can do it!

I’ve got all these really great reasons not to do this thing. So why am I doing it? I’ll blame Jennifer and her post this morning for getting this wrecking ball swinging, but really, there’s only one reason.

BECAUSE IT’S FUN!!! Though last year was my first year participating, I can’t imagine skipping it ever again! Those sleep-deprived, coffee-addled days, nerves jangled as I try to hammer out 1666 words in a single sitting. The hours of watching my Twitter feed, giggling at the prompts, spirits lifted by the encouragement.

I started running a few weeks ago, but I am no runner. There are no road races where I would not humiliate myself and everyone related to me. NaNoWriMo is my marathon, it is my opportunity to be a part of something much larger than myself, to engage with other writers, sharing struggles, celebrating victories. My rough as sandpaper draft at the end is my medal.

I’ll do it a little differently this year. Because I have so much on my plate, my goal is to just have fun. I am going to follow as many of the writing prompts as I can. No plan, no expectations beyond 50,000 words. I’m also going  to attend at least one local write-in so I can make connections with actual, living people, even if it means I have to listen to jazz (curse you, Panera Bread!) to do it.

Coffee’s on. Who’s with me?

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85 thoughts on “You Knew I Was Crazy, Right?

  1. I keep waiting to have something I want to write about. If I were to participate this year, I’d likely just write 50,000 words ranting about Peter Jackson or something.

    HMMMMMMMM.

  2. I’m with you!!!! Have never done this before but I do believe I’ll take the plunge! Have several novels outlined, character bios written, diabolical plots all in my head. Time to get those on paper. Let’s do this!! 😀

  3. I’m in!!! I’m in!!! Newborn-shnewborn. Sure I can’t find time to shower, eat lunch, cook, clean, blog…but that shouldn’t stop me from writing a book in a month. Right? Husband told me I was crazy when I announced my NaNoWriMo intentions. 🙂 Crazy like a writer!

  4. Oh darling girl . you know I really really want to do this, i have been studying my grammar book and girding my loins. I have never done anything like this before.. where do i go for guidance.. oh and where to carve out the time, how many words a day? 1500 – 2000.. and I have never understood how this becomes a group thing and who do you send it to at the end.. no-one? is there a prize? I do want to do it.. I do. c

    • 1666 words per day will get the required 50K in 30 days. They have a place on the website where you can upload your word count. You get a badge for your blog and a free copy of your book if you complete it. It’s so much fun. You have the most wonderful stories to tell. You really should try it!

  5. I am teetering on the edge, but I believe I’ll do it too. I have a non-fiction novel that’s been simmering on my back burner… think I’ll give it a whirl! I’ve also signed up to do one day’s contribution to a group NanoWriMo project. Each person takes on 1666 words for their chosen day. Laura Kalpakian, (extensively published) author will write the first chapter and start us off, and then we each add to the consecutive chapters. They’re looking for a few more writers, if you (or any of your readers) want to get a little crazier! I think it will be fun, and they’re accepting writers from all over the country. Leave a comment on my blog and I’ll hook you up. As for length… clearly in comments and my own posts, I need to cut back on length, so the 1666 should be a breeze! :-p

  6. ARG. Just when I had convinced myself I wasn’t going to do it this year. Because I’m *still* editing my book from last NaNoWriMo! But…you only live once. Okay. I’m in!

  7. Okay so after numerous half hearted ideas/paragraphs started and given up on I can never quite get myself properly into writing a novel even though i REALLY do want to. Its like too many ideas coming at me at once and I cant settle on one. This sounds really interesting though I’d love to give it a shot!

  8. This will be my fifth time doing NaNo and I am also going with the “just have fun” route. I plan on spending a LOT more time in the dares and adoptions threads than usual. I know I don’t have the energy to devote to an idea I’m really passionate about, so this year will be much more whimsical than years past.

      • Come join. I think you’ll enjoy it. The process is pretty entertaining. Be sure to follow them on Twitter for the writing prompts.

  9. Went for it last year and only made it half-way. Can’t decide yet about this year although I do have the stirrings of a story rattling around in my brain.

  10. You ARE crazy! I love it though, even with your hands so full it sounds like a blast. And you talking about it tempts me to partake in the crazy too. 🙂

  11. Is it just me or did I read the headline “You Knew I Was Crazy, Right?” before on this blog? Here is my counter question: What’s wrong with being crazy? Go for it, but don’t you dare not keeping us in the loop!

  12. Good luck! I am supporting you from my perch on my couch while I watch TV and not write a novel. I have zero discipline, but I’m impressed by yours…and your scrapbooking skills because wow!

    • You quit that right now! Thirty days of pressure is fun for me because it’s a tiny window. But by the end of the scrapbooking marathon, I can’t look at the pictures again for about four months.

      Try the NaNo youth writing program with your gifted kids sometime.

  13. I started my blog last year & heard about this, but never knew what it was. 1666 words a day? Wow, you must be really disciplined! I would love to commit to something like this, if only to get me out of the rut of not writing regularly. But I’m really not sure I could manage this. And I know hubby would be jealous of all the time spent writing & then get cranky because I’m not doing other stuff.

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  15. Good for you! I did it last year for the first time too, and it was fun. I only made about 20,000 words but that was way more than I had ever done before in a month and I was kind of proud.

  16. I’ve done Nano a few times – I finished twice and got some not too horrible books out of it. With lots of need of polish, of course, but still. I didn’t realize how quickly November was coming up! Still, I think it would be a ton more fun with friends this time! That would be great.

  17. Sweet! I’m in. I’m gonna do it too. 🙂 If you want to win, what worked for me in August was to write more than 1666 words each day so I could get away with not writing occasionally if my life got too busy. Waking up early helped me because my wife and kids are all the sleeping-in type.

    • Go, Tony! It’s so much fun! Last year I did do some 5K blasts so that I could take a day off if I needed to. My kids are not the sleeping in type. They’re going to have to learn the art of leaving Mommy the heck alone before 7am.

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