Monday, December 31, 2007

JanNoWriMo: the craze sucks in another soul

Have you heard about these things? "NaNo" months, as they're called, are month long novel writing marathons. The biggest one (and the original so far as I can tell) is NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month. NaNoWriMo challenges participants to write a 50,000 word story/novel/novella entirely within the month of November.

To support and encourage this flurry of writing activity is an online community of, you guessed it, message boards. And NaNo even provides weekly email pep talks. There's even a one day fund raiser called "The Night of Writing Dangerously." These guys seem to have a great sense of humor but are, like all marathoners, crazy.

"Winners" are anyone who crosses the 50k finish line and get their own special icon to post on their blog/myspace/facebook/whatever. Who's to tell if you win? Well, no one honestly. Whether you download the winner's certificate or not is completely on the honor system. But Rah! Rah! you if you do it.

You may recall this lovely little yellow graphic sitting in my blog earlier this year. This past November I discovered NaNo for the first time despite the fact that it has been around for several years. Discovered it on November 20. I did not attempt to finish 50k in the ensuing ten days. Sorry, no winner's certificate for me.

Apparently these things are so thrilling and enthralling that there are other communities and other websites ready to roll with their own marathons allowing crazy writers their choice of month or the choice of attempting all of them. Hey, why just run Boston when you can run Chicago too? JanNo, JulNo are among the more prominent in existence as well as Screenwriting Frenzy and WriYe for year long writing goals just incase one month is too short sighted for you.

JanNoWriMo begins, unsurprisingly, January 1, 2008. And it has claimed this soul as one of it's crazies: Mine.

Sadly, it's icon is no where near as cool as NaNo's but I guess that's what happens when one is funded and the other isn't.

I begin Jan. 1 on my 50,000 word quest. Which gives me 24 hours to decide if I want to write something from scratch or add 50k words onto an existing story.

I encourage you to join me. Because crazy should stick together.

My cute word count ticker ready to go (now if only I understood the ticker technology better I wouldn't have to make a new one each time I updated ... or maybe it's not me and it's just that the ticker site is not user friendly).

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