Thursday, 10 October 2013

Why I will not be taking part in NaNoWriMo this year

It's that time of year. If you know me, you will know that I have taken part in NaNo for the last seven years (yes I had to check that, just to make sure, because wow - really?!). THe emails are being sent out, everywhere around hte interwebs there are people announcing what they are writing, and whether they are winging it or planning it. But this year I am not going to take part.


I'm not entirely sure, but I'll try to explain. I mean, I have done this for SEVEN years. I owe a lot to NaNo and I think it's FANTASTIC. I still think it's fantastic. Without it, I probably would still be writing fanfic or starting projects that I never finish. True, I probably would have eventually got round to writing a novel and finishing it., but probably not so soon - I wouldn't have proved to myself that I could do it. I could write that many words. It taught me a lot - about plotting and the need for a routine and writing everyday, and just getting the words down - and about first drafts and the way that anything goes. Editing comes later - the important thing is to get the words down. And I write all of my fiction like that. Get the words down and then go back to edit. It taught me a lot. It's been important to me - it's magical. The challenge and the community and just the writing that 1667 words every day has always thrilled me. I've met lovely people too through it and I have many fond memories of NaNo and the forums and the community. The thrill of those first 2,000 words, breaking through the second week barrier, and updating word counts, hitting half way, and then finally clicking validate novel at the end with hours or days to spare.

So I owe a lot to NaNo. It's something that draws me back every year- last year I didn't even mean to do it, but come mid October with all my friends prepping for it, I did it.

Yet, it doesn't feel right this year. I mean I'm editing one novel, and am half way through other projects that I want to focus on, and I don't want to drop it all to write something else that, I'll be honest, I won't edit and won't do anything with. I haven't really done anything with the projects I've written in the last few years - I've had good intentions to do so, but I've always focused on other projects throughout the rest of the year and not gone back to them. Which just seems a waste. I mean, if I had some burning ideas to write and nothing else on the go, I probably would do it. But I'm always so fed up with the story at the end, and it just doesn't seem worth it so much anymore. So I'm taking a break from it this year.

(Of course I may be retracting this statement on the 31st October at 11.58pm or something).

Also - I just saw a post about 'PiBoIdMo' - Picture Book Idea Month.... I might try this out instead as something different! Find out more here.

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