Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Is It Worth It?

Okay, enough of me whining. Instead a completely non-depressing post.

Rish asked me the other day about NaNoWriMo, the National Novel Writing Month event that happens each year in November. He asked me if I had to start in November and write a novel, what would I write. Since November is very close, I figured I would have to use a story idea that I had done significant planning on already. So I told him what story I would do, the one about the alien possession...hell, I mentioned it in this week's episode that just hit this afternoon.

So, then Rish went home, and I was left alone with my thoughts. My eyes are always bigger than my stomach, and soon I was wondering if NaNoWriMo was something that I could accomplish...or at least attempt to accomplish. After a little while, I had basically convinced myself that I should do it. Then a bunch of crap happened that sucked away all my free time for the next week, and now I'm wondering again if it is possible.

So, I pose these questions:
  • Do you think something like NaNoWriMo would be worth it? Or just a waste of time and energy? Just a frenzy that accomplishes nothing useful, destined to end badly?
  • Do any of you have experience with NaNoWriMo?
  • What was your experience like?
  • What do you think I should do?


  1. Never done it. Think it'a huge waste of time if you already aren't writing. If you are writing, you probably don't need it. If you aren't, it won't help much.

  2. Nanowrimo is what gave me the confidence to really write instead of saying 'someday.' It really helped me focus and get work out, and I met a lot of great fellow writers. I say go for it!

  3. I've been doing Nanowrimo for the past 5 years. What it accomplishes is entirely personal. For me, I gained confidence, I had fun, it kept my mind busy, it showed me I could actually write, and it got me closer to the million mark. My second year I produced a book I actually like. One of the best parts of the month is the forums. Using them for ideas, research and support was great. I've already gotten some of my groundwork done by posting a question there. Had I tried using Wiki or Google for the same answer, I would have been sorely frustrated and wasted my time. Doing Nanowrimo helps me each year from getting too wrapped up in mechanics and precision and 'forces' me just to produce the work. December I can go back and edit.
    The downside: If you already have a lot of time issues, this is not the hobby for you. If you have a tendency to feel guilty, don't have as much support for your wacky ideas, or feel bad when you can't finish something, stay away. This will make all those things worse.
    I had to cut back on some things: TV, games, reading. Other obligations went to the back burner, or saved for one day to do at once, when I had enough words to make up for the lost day.
    So it comes down to: Do you want it bad enough? I do.

  4. I think it can serve as a wordcount motivator. I've never done it personally (only due to the month of November usually being a terribly busy month for me) but now that I've written a 1st draft of a novel, I think I understand how to get to the end of the story without editing and I no longer need a gimmic to push me forward. I'm not fast, mind you. Just persistent.