Friday, September 23, 2011

Friday Five: Why I Participate in NaNoWriMo

I wrote a reminder about National Novel Writing Month for this week's Sunday Sales. I figured it was fitting to devote my Friday Five for this week to NaNoWriMo as well. As a reminder, if you aren't interested in the NaNo and loathe hearing about it, you are probably going to hate me through October and November because that is ALL I'll be working on. Yup. I'm planning to give NaNo tips each day of October and a writing prompt for each day of November. I will be around but I will be working in a dedicated manner that doesn't involve a lot of social media. Sorry in advance for some of you. On to my list.

Top 5 reasons I participate in NaNoWriMo:

Before my first NaNo, I had never completed a single novel idea. I would write an introduction, maybe come up with an awesome character, or just create a good plot. And then I did nothing else with it. The first NaNo I did (in 2009) was incredible in that it forced me to sit and focus on one thing for a certain span of time.

I work better with a deadline. Or more likely, I can't work without a deadline. If there isn't some external push to get me to work on something, I procrastinate until I get a push. Last year, I got the push to finish the 2009's NaNo project in October so that I could work on November's new project without going crazy. It is going to be that way again this year I do believe.

Writing is cathartic for me and when I focus, I lose myself in my story. I don't eat. I don't pee. I have to be reminded to bathe. Okay, it really isn't that bad but you get my meaning. There is nothing better than that feeling of coming out of a writing haze to find you managed to hit your word count goal or exceed it without notice. I live for those days.

I am an admitted pantser. I hate planning stuff out in advance because I feel trapped if I do. Such a thing is usually looked down on by writing professionals. And I'm sure it is for good reason. However, if such planning inhibits me from writing at all, then I think I can skip it. This is completely okay with the NaNo folks. That leads me to #5.

The NaNo community is one of the greatest communities I have ever found. For the most part, everyone is helpful, encouraging, and inspiring. The forums are overflowing with like-minded people that are looking for specific information (or to share specific information), buddies that will be your cheering section (especially useful if you do not have a strong support group at home), and will step up to the challenge of word wars, community vs. community competitions, and other healthy and fun ways to kick your ass into gear and write.
Can you think of 5 different reasons to participate? Or... can you come up with 5 reasons NOT to do the NaNo that I cannot argue against until you give up in defeat? Let me hear it in the comments below.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS


Booksteve said...

I work better with a deadline as well. In fact, I've found myself often postponing things until just before deadline and then finishing in a burst of energy.

Like you, I love it when you get so deep into your world that you can't easily leave it for mundane realities...but it hasn't happened that often with me.

Discipline is my worst enemy as a writer.

I don't do "communities" though. I probably should and could use the support. Must be attributable to my innate shyness but I could NEVER see myself going out and meeting other participants and writing around them.

Still trying to decide if I want to participate again this year after scrubbing out two years ago and skipping it last year.

Dee said...

My biggest enemy right now is going to be making time. You know some of the craziness that is my life right now. Multiply that by about 10 and you are probably ball parking my chaos. I really hope things settle down here in the next few days because I need October to finish the last 1/2 of Immo2 and set up Immo3.

I was wary of the community thing too. Not because of being shy. I'm never shy really. But I like my privacy and going to the meetings takes away the anonymity that I get from the net. I use that as a crutch some times.

You should give it a try. If nothing else, you'll write a bit. Maybe try to use the idea prompts I'm posting in November. Most are silly... you'll like them. :P