Last month, I tentatively accepted the “challenge” of Camp NaNoWriMo. For those of you unfamiliar, it is simply a summer-time version of NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) which takes place each November, the “goal” being to write 50,000 words in 30 days.
I accepted the challenge, and I failed.
But how much can one fail at something self-paced?
Ultimately, I got a couple thousand words written on one project, nearly one thousand on another, refined a second draft of the first 1/4 of a WIP novel, accepted a handful of very helpful beta readers, redefined the “genre” of one project, joined several (very) beneficial writing groups, created a digital book cover, and unveiled a few plot twists even I didn’t know were coming.
This is what I love about the NaNoWriMo institution. It allows you to set a goal. It prompts you to keep going when the going gets tough. It creates atmosphere for you to brainstorm with other users and even to utilize some of the great ideas that aren’t being used (with full consent of the original creator). It gives you insight from other authors– some very successful, others just seeing the first results of their accomplishments.
I prefer the November writing to the summer writing. Maybe it’s the weather, maybe it’s the holidays, maybe it’s tradition– I really don’t know.
But Camp helped me figure a lot out, it coaxed me into working on aspects I hadn’t considered.
So maybe I failed at the original goal I’d set for myself (25k words on a new project), but it sure rocked.
Really looking forward to November. No one needs an excuse to write, but sometimes it’s really the best kick in the pants possible.
Kudos to all of you who participated, those of you who reached your goals, and those of you who have been inspired.