Tales from a NANOWRIMO Failure

National Novel Writing Month is upon us.

For the past several years I have participated. Had an idea and a plan (as much as I ever have a plan). Signed up on the website and planned to go to local write-ins. I even bought merchandise. And I failed. Every. Single. Year.

Yes, something crappy in my personal life seems to always happen a week into November. Crippling depression or the sudden onset of dementia in my terminally ill grandmother. A lot of times when things are bad, writing is an escape but then a lot of times the bad is just too bad.

But let’s also face the fact that the way you have to write for NANOWRIMO is just not my jam. I am slow. It takes years to go from idea to first finished draft. Does the fact of how slow I am make me panic when I happen to be sitting around pondering mortality? Yes. But I have tried forcing it and it doesn’t work.

That’s the thing about this writing business. There is no right or wrong way to do this. Some will argue that there are absolutely wrong ways to do this and then you will find someone else contradicting them. You can find the same number of people following the rules as breaking them.

So I love the concept of NANOWRIMO. I cheer my friends on. It’s just something I personally fail at. And that’s ok.


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