Come Be a Pale, Distracted Recluse With Me

After a short, strange summer, the leaves outside are finally changing colors. The air is brisk despite the sunshine, and there are pumpkins and spooky decorations all over the neighborhood. I think it’s safe to say: It’s NaNoWriMo season. All the evidence is there.

I, for one, am muy excited about NaNo this year. I’ve actually structured my entire writing schedule around it. Well, that and my brother and his wife’s arrival here in Washington. But mostly NaNo.

At this point I don’t really need NaNo to inspire me to write. I wrote PWNED in a month, but did it in March instead of November. I’m more than fine writing a novel in a month on my own, but I still look forward to NaNo every year.

The reason why is simple: It’s pure, high-octane creative mayhem fun.

There’s just something about tapping out a novel until your fingers ache, knowing people all around the world are doing the same thing, that is so dang fun. The excitement, encouragement, sense of accomplishment, and online community support are incredible. Especially when your region kicks everyone else’s booty every year in overall word count and invidual word count.


I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, if you like writing, you have what it takes to write a novel. No one’s saying it’ll be a good novel, but it doesn’t have to be to count as a NaNo victory. All that matters is that you extract the words from your brain and splatter them onto a word processing program.

Find a story and start writing. It’ll change on you, and so will your characters, but that’s seriously the fun of it. Meet some imaginary friends and start writing down what they say to each other. It’s one month out of your life where you are totally justified in being a pale, distracted recluse who mutters and twitches and sleep-mutters nonsense about word counts.

For more info about NaNoWriMo, check out the official website. I cannot urge you strongly enough to sign up and spend the last week of October relishing your freedom and thinking through what story you’d like to tell this year.

NaNoWriMo starts in seven days. Who’s with me?!

3 thoughts on “Come Be a Pale, Distracted Recluse With Me

  1. I have what I think is a hilarious idea for a book, but it’s not fiction. Is that acceptable to NaNoWriMo vets?

  2. You would be what’s known as a nano rebel… there’s a section in the forums just for you. Technically, you’re supposed to write a work of fiction, but there are plenty of similarly minded nano-rebels who decided they like the challenge and the camaraderie but wanted to do another kind of written work.

    I’m glad to see you’re in again Erika! I might throw my hat in the ring again, we’ll see…

  3. -Jennifer, dc knows his stuff. I say go for it if you have time, a book’s a book, and 50,000 words is an accomplishment regardless of genre in my opinion.

    -dc, Do it! I know you’re already busy saving the world and being awesome, but you know you want to…

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