Are You Ready for November?

It’s in the air.  Can you smell it?  November is rushing toward us, it’s cheeks puffed out, panting and with a wild gleam in its eyes.

And why?  Because on the first day of November a remarkable annual occurence begins.   Yep.  NaNoWriMo, AKA National Novel Writing Month.

It began in 1999 with just 21 people pledging to write (at least) the requisite 1667 words per day to complete a 175-page, 50,000 word novel.

I didn’t hear about this until 2002 when a friend from work suggested I also join this amazing thing she’d just heard of.  She talked me into it, and I jumped in with both feet.  Speaking of feet, my friend’s got cold, and she quit about two days in.  


Well that made me feel good in an ugly, off-hand way.  I was stronger than she was.  I pushed on.   Ah, but here the story turns south.  See, despite the best of intentions, after a solid week of good productivity, I missed a day.  Man, talk about bummed out.  I hadn’t kept my word (even if it was only to myself).  I got so depressed about missing one day (which could have been easily made up, mind you) that I missed another.  And that was that.  I did not make it to the end of the month, and I (clearly) did not make the 50k word goal.  Sigh.

Then 2003 came along and I thought, “what the what?  I’ll give it a try.”

And that, boys and girls, is the rest of the story.  Yes, I completed the challenge in ‘o3, and I’ve completed it every year since, and sometimes by as much as 110k words (there is no penalty for going over the goal).

This year will be my 8th time to take part, and I’m looking forward to it eagerly.  I’ve got my new novel, “Wizard’s Blood” very briefly outlined, and I’m anxious for the scheduled excuse to put some things aside in order to devote a minimum of 1667 words a day to a new project.

So, why am I telling you this?  Because I want YOU to come and join me on this journey.

Here are the basics:

There is no fee.

There is no prize (you are competing against yourself)

You do get to see how others are doing, and you get a daily graph of your own work.

At the end you upload your book to the NaNoWriMo site, they count the words, and then they delete the file.

For the last couple of years a POD publisher has promised a physical copy of your book for free.

By joining you get to be a part of something huge, something tremendous.  Last year over 165,000 people signed up and better than 30,000 made the 50k word goal by midnight November 30th.

I think you’ve got what it takes to do the same.

In case you forgot, the URL is

Now, go sign up!


8 responses to “Are You Ready for November?

  1. Ah that fatal first week. I remember it well. A lot of people never really recover from that. I think it hit my never-give-up button. This is my fifth year, going for my second win.

  2. This year I will do it!!

  3. Rik ~

    What, if anything, have you done with the novels you’ve written during NaNoWriMo?

    Have you polished any of them up to send out? Or do you participate solely for the “thrill” of competing against yourself each year?

    I wrote 47,000 words last Novemeber, liked the story quite a bit, and haven’t worked on it at all since last November. 🙂

    • Fair question. FIVE, a novel currently in 4th rewrite won top honors out of 480 or so entrants on WEbook–but their help and contract fell through. Steel Heaven stalled out at about 70k words. SIX, sequal to FIVE is about two chapters short of completion (first draft). The others were well past the 50k mark, but none worth mentioning. They will, however, be grist for future work as they have good ideas, just poor development.

  4. I knew FIVE had done well with WEbook, but didn’t realize it started with NaNoWriMo.

    When WEbook didn’t follow through on its interest in FIVE, and some of its other marketing claims, I lost interest in WEbook.

    So, is that why it’s called FIVE? Because it was your 5th completed NaNoWriMo novel? 😉

  5. I’m in, having a devil of a time trying to navigate their site. Thanks for being my buddy! I’m trying something a little out of my comfort zone but far more marketable – mystery suspense. Not sure how it’s going to pan out but I will get those 50,000 words!

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