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Nanowrimo! Nanofimo! Nanoo Nanoo!

So for the last few years, come November, I have been doing my own little version of Nanowrimo called “Nanofimo”—National Novel Finishing Month.

Actually, I rarely actually finish anything in November, but what I try to do is slam a few more thousand words on existing works and get them a little farther along. My work method involves keeping a dozen stories going at any given time, abandoning for months or years, coming back, working on them more.

It works for me. Stuff does get finished. That’s the important bit.

There are authors who get very snooty about Nanowrimo and say things like “Yeah, well, I have to sit down and write every single day because this is my job.” 

To this I say, “Oh, put a sock in it. It’s my job too, and I think it’s awesome.”

I do sit down—when my schedule is not completely travel-destroyed, as it is currently—four days a week and put down a minimum of a thousand words. But November is special and I double down and try to do 2.5K a day and drag out old stuff and say “This doesn’t suck” and throw words at it. (And the next time I drag it out, I have often forgotten that I added to it and am pleasantly surprised.)

And then there’s the corollary, where people say “You know that’s not ALL there is to writing a novel! You still have to edit it!” and I will not insult your intelligence because duh. (Certainly there are people who don’t know this—but I am guessing they do not read writer’s blogs and see all the bits with the weeping and the editing. Heck, the last few DAYS around here…)

Now, if you want inspiration, here’s what I’ve got.

Last year, I sat down and did that, and while I was fooling around trying to make word count, I started a new thing from a vague germ of an idea I was having. I put about twelve thousand words down, poked it a few times over the succeeding months, and finally send it off to my agent with my standard “So there’s thing I’ve been fooling with…”

She sold the book three days later.

It took longer than that to get the details done, of course, and I still had to finish the book, which took a few months, and no contract on earth has ever moved faster than the snail flies, but it’s tentatively scheduled for Spring 2015.

Would I have written it eventually? Probably. Would I have sat down and hammered out as much as I did, if I wasn’t trying to make wordcount for Nano? Probably not. So, y’know. There’s that.

If you like Nanowrimo, if you like Nanofimo, do it. Kick ass, take names, drive your verbs before you and hear the lamentations of their prefixes.

If you finish, great! If not, you still have more than you started with.


(I will be starting it when I get back—we have a Disney family vacation next week, which means that if you follow me on Twitter @ursulav there is a good chance you’ll see some Tweets! Of! Interest!)


Originally published at Tea with the Squash God. You can comment here or there.


We await the new novel with bated breath. And JOY!

I like the Nanofimo idea. I can't guarantee that I'll actually finish it or even get a respectable word count done each day, but at keast make writing more of a priority each month? I think I can do that!

Oh, NANO...

I didn't think it was that time already, but looking at the calender I see-yup. November. The month of pain and misery/heartache and anger. Mostly negative emotions, unless I get lucky and punch out a really good scene here and there.

I've pretty much given up on Nano, due to the sheer *frustration* that it brings, and I write almost every single day anyway, even if it's not very much, it's still a little something.

I think I like your Nanofimo idea. I definitely have a ton of projects that I should probably finish sometime in my life. Most of them I've lost interest in, but there's still some that I think are like 'oh, hey, that's a good idea, I should totally write that!'-and then go 'yeah right, like you ever finish anything'.

I've got over a hundred documents of stories started, most of which aren't finished. This is the year which I'll likely try to finish those documents, instead of writing out new ideas.

Except every time I write, a new idea always seems to flow into my head.

How to resolve this issue, I wonder?

Oh well. It'll work itself out eventually, and hopefully your Nanofimo will help!

Thanks for the idea, and Happy Halloween! May lots of chocolate goodness flow your way! :)

NaNoFiMo for the win. And it doesn't even need to be writing, either, actually, yanno. I mean, art projects in general sometimes take on a life of their own and rebel and sit in the corner and sulk. So along comes November and people I know (some face to face, some only on line like here) start with the writing thing and I think, WTH, what projects to I have outstanding that need finishing.

And I start working on them.

That is, after stealing your idea. Shamelessly. Blatantly. ::looks around for file to take of serial number::

I have a couple of friends who do NaNoPoMo -- they try to write and post one poem per day for the month of November. Doesn't matter if it's only a haiku or a quatrain.

All the love for you and all the Real Live Authors who are supportive of us Wrimos.

This is my second NaNoWriMo (I only got to 30K words back in '09). If I live long enough, I hope one of these days to have something I can submit to VP.

And even if I don't, the only way to get better at writing is to write.

Thanks for the encouragement.

Edited at 2013-11-01 12:22 am (UTC)

I am totally stealing your NaNoFiMo idea this year! A few weeks ago I was made to count the unfinished projects in my hard-drive and... eek. I didn't reach a hundred because I'm pretty sure I've lost files during laptop moves. So yeah, this month I'm determined to put in a few thousand works on some projects that aren't quite dead instead of starting another one.

Best of luck to you! Best of luck to me! Best of luck to anyone trying to do any sort of NaNoWhateverMo! And looking forwards to spring 2015 (and to your Tweets! Of! Interest!)

As a fellow nanodoer, I salute you.

I am doing Acwrime - the academic Equivelant of Nanowrimo. Aim is to have a draft of a peper by the end of the month

*waves pompoms in your general direction*

I was wondering if you would make back to the neighborhood… Sushi?

I think we're free Wednesday night, if you're around! (Take to Kevin, Kevin is the one who knows the schedule...)

I was planning to do this, but didn't have a name for it.

NaNoFiMo will help solve the fanfic-that-became-a-novella-that-became-a-novel that's been sitting at the top of my LJ since grad school. (Seems like now that it's no longer a guilty pleasure, I'm less able to devote time to it.)

Have you ever said to those snooty authors, well doing Nano should be easy for you then. :¬D Doing Nano is like running a marathon. There are professional runners, yes, but they are far outnumbered by all the enthusiastic amateurs who are running, not to break records but to finish the course.

First let me state that I am in awe of all of the wonderful work that people put into writing via this event regardless of how they utilize the time (starting new, finishing or just moving something forward a bit more). However, Nanofimo sounds like miniature clay art to me.

Just sayin'. ;-)

Orlando or California? I live 40 minutes from the Orlando parks, and would love to meet up if it works for you...

This I'm doing Nanorevismo...