The Rebels of NaNoWriMo 2011

I wear my badge proudly.

Last night I temporarily signed away any scrap of social life I had, and decided to join forces with thousands of other writers during NaNoWriMo 2011.

Now, I am aware that the basic idea of NaNoWriMo is that the writer begins with an outline, but does not begin actually writing the story until November 1st (the end of the challenge being the 30th), with the word count at the end of the month expected to be about 50K.

However, I already have a solid (although measly) 13,000 words of my current (and debut) novel, and would hate to toss my thin manuscript to the side and create yet another idea; I’ve become extremely attached to this one, and do not want to part with it, even temporarily. Instead I’d prefer to push through, and get as many words onto the page as I possibly can; and I figured a 30 day rush to 50K would be a great way to get a large chunk finished.

Which is why I wanted to join November’s challenge. But as I signed up, I found myself wondering: Am I breaking any NaNoWriMo “rules”? Or are there any actual “rules” to the concept at all?

A quick Google search lead me to the site’s forums, particularly one entitled “Welcome to Rebellion! You are NOT a cheater.” This forum is filled to the brim with others writers like myself, wanting to take on NaNoWriMo but as a means of finishing (or coming close to) a first draft of a novel they have already begun, some that even started their potential novels during the 2010 challenge.

The thread contained several posts from various Rebels, stickin’ it to the Man and shouting from the cyber rooftops that NaNoWriMo is for anyone! Who’s going to care if you followed the rules, if you get a great book out of it?

And so I found my place, as a first time NaNoWriMo participant, among the Rebels. I always did prefer to sit in the back of the classroom, anyway.

November 1st kicks things off, and I am pumped! I’m hoping I can meet my 50,000 word “requirement” and still maintain my sanity. I’m sure I’ll end up sacrificing one (and I don’t plan on letting it be the word count).

You know what? Maybe I’ll even shoot for 60,000. Let’s up the ante.

What have I gotten myself into?





Filed under Writing

16 responses to “The Rebels of NaNoWriMo 2011

  1. Here’s an idea only use small words and then your count will rise quickly

    I guess you can’t cut and paste the first half into the second half when you reach 25,000 words

    Anyway good luck with your challenge. (don’t forget to make your main characters have at least one internal conflict)

  2. Oh I’ll be right there with you tapping away at my social life while I write a novel in a month. I’m stupid.

  3. Your post makes me want to jump on the NaNoWriMo bandwagon. (Wow, somebody needs to create a macro for that acronym…) Anyway, I’m about 17,000 words into my WIP, so I had planned on not joining either. Glad to hear that joining anyway wouldn’t be cheating! I just may give it a go. I’ve been plugging along, averaging about 700 words a day, so what’s another thousand, right? Besides, 50,000 words seem a little short to me anyway. I had already decided against it, but now I’m going to have to look into it. Thanks! (I think…)

    • You’re…welcome? 😉 I’m still wondering what I may have gotten myself into, hehe. I am very proud of my 13,000 words but logging onto my computer each day and writing a few paragraphs here and there isn’t cutting it. And with no one shouting over my shoulder, sometimes it’s hard to keep myself focused. So that’s why I figured NaNoWriMo would be great motivation! Imagine how proud we would feel at the end of the month, with over 50,000 words to our manuscripts? Those words may require lots of editing, but at least they’ll be there, with a real, solid story hidden in between. I hope you decide to do it, and good luck if you do! I’m always looking for more motivation to add to my group. 🙂

      • If I do it, I’ll have to really cut back on the amount of time that I spend on WordPress. My blog addiction is getting as bad as my FB one once was. I’ll let you know if I decide to sign my life away!

    • Alright! Let me know! 🙂 And ugh, I feel you on that one…my blogging will have to be cut back for a few weeks, and my Facebook addiction will have to be stifled as well!

  4. I’ve given up trying to do things with a restrictive time frame. (At least until the next time someone offers a much needed prize in return for “winning.” I don’t have the sense to stop testing how much heartbreak I can stand.) But it seems I may be unofficially joining the write-in come November. I hope the things I have to take care of are done around the first and I can get back to my recently begun novel. I’m wishing a little luck for us both, even though we don’t need it. We’ve got talent, right? Hell yeah.

    • Of course we have talent! Psht. But I suppose a little luck couldn’t hurt us. 😉 I hope everything works out; I have fallen in love with several of your flash fiction pieces so I’d love to see an excerpt from something a bit more lengthy. I think my novel (and myself) just need this little extra boost towards a finished first draft. I suppose we’ll see what happens!

      • Thanks, Nicole. So far I’ve never written anything longer than a short story. I haven’t figured out how to fix my header menu, but I used to have a ‘Bits and Pieces’ listing there with a couple of stories under it. I put those at the sidebar under ‘Stuff, and a Few Stories I’ve Written’. “Tatiana’s Dressing Room” is the most recent.

        As for the novels, here’s to focus and lots and lots of words!

      • Focus, lots of words, and sleepless nights! And you are welcome. 🙂

  5. you go girl…who needs to bathe, read the newspaper, eat, watch TV, comb your hair, brush your…ahhhh – you get the idea. good luck, continue…

    • Thank you, Tony! At the end of the month I may be smelly, dirty, anorexic, and possibly blind from staring at my computer screen for so long, but I may also have a finished first draft. And that’s what is most important, right?!?!?!

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