NaNoWriMo 2012

Sorry for my absence the past couple of weeks, in the middle of a series. A writing project with deadlines ate up most of the time devoted to this blog. I don’t post consistently anyway, so perhaps you were not expecting more. Sorry anyway. We’ll pick up The Casual Vacancy again next time.

I wanted to give a shout out to NaNoWriMo, even though it’s already the 5th of November, and to encourage you all to write something everyday this month. In previous years, I’ve done a “First Lines and Titles” game, but people don’t seem all that interested in that. That’s fine. The point of National Novel Writing Month is more about pushing past writers’ block or procrastination or the intimidation of the blank page to GET SOMETHING DOWN than it is necessarily about coming up with pithy brilliance. So here’s what I’d like to try this month. Everyday, write something. Write a grocery list. Write down what you did today. Write down how much you hate writing. Whatever. I don’t care. Write it on the backs of receipts, old calendars, bank statements, gum wrappers, or even a special journal if you’re feeling fancy. Whatever you have handy. Just take five minutes (or less) everyday and jot something down. Hopefully it will be something that has meaning to you. My theory is that writing is as much about habit as it is about inspiration and hard work, and maybe this teeny month-long exercise will help us all get in the habit of writing a little something. More than that, it will get us in the habit of being more observant, more thoughtful about what’s going on around us. Try to be deliberate and conscious as you approach your daily writing, but only as deliberate and conscious as you can afford to be. If your writing has to happen while you brown the meat for dinner while a toddler pelts you with Cheerios, there’s only so much awareness to go around. Do what you can.

TODAY (whenever you read this post) just make a little comment here that you’re going to write something– ANYTHING!– everyday from now until the end of the month. It’s just 25 days. And I’ll do this with you, here on the blog. Everyday I’ll post a little prompt (in case you need one), and I’ll include a short reflection of my own (not related to the prompt, because I don’t want to influence what you do end up writing). At the end of the month, I’ll ask you all to share how many days you wrote, and about how many words you wrote. Anyone who writes all 25 days gets a prize. If no one writes for 25 days, a prize will be given to the person with the highest combined total of days and words written.

Papers count. Letters to the editor count. Facebook statuses count. Your signature, probably, should NOT count, but whatever, it’s all self-reported anyway. 🙂 Just write a little something everyday and see how it goes. And if you choose to write a “first lines and titles” entry as part of your daily writing, extra-winning for you. 🙂 Come on, just do it during a commercial break. It’ll be fun!

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9 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo 2012

  1. I write down my to do list everyday.. 🙂 I have been trying to be better about writing in my journal but I have slacked off that lately. I am going to try to write in it every day this month. I should probably update my blog also.. I don’t remember the last time I wrote on it. 🙂

  2. This sounds like a fun challenge… and that anything can sound “fun” at this point in my day is really quite miraculous! I’m afraid writing this month might reveal how terribly grumpy I am! But I will do my best!

    1. Yay for Kim! It’s ok if your writing is grumpy. It’s ok if YOU are grumpy. 🙂 And remember, it’s not like you have to show anyone what you write. Try it and see what happens.

  3. You’ve inspired me to dust off my journal and get on that already! So that said, I am going to attempt to write at least a little each day in my journal. I was an avid journaler (is that a word?) in my younger days and I have stacks of emotion/thought filled tattered notebooks from that period, but I just sorta stopped in my twenties along the way. I hope this will get me started on my way to regular writing! 🙂

  4. I’m going to assume that end notes on papers don’t count — because really I don’t want them to count — and say yes! I’ll give it a go. Fun prompts so far.

  5. Blargh, I saw your prompt posts but somehow missed this one introducing the challenge. 😦 I did type something every day this month (pretty much every day for the entire year actually), but not my own words so they probably shouldn’t count. 🙂 Even beyond that I’m sure I’ve done a number of Facebook updates and tweets that were my own this month but this is like a personal progress situation, I really shouldn’t try to check off things I did in the past since I didn’t do them with the intent of your challenge in mind. This is my punishment for spotty blog reading.

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