I know that I’m the umpteenth person to write about what is about to start tomorrow, NaNoWriM. Still, most of what I’ve read thus far are articles promoting this event. I, on the other hand, am discouraging it.
Most people who are writing and are on the Internet have read somewhere about the National Now Writing Month (NaNoWriM). It starts tomorrow. I won’t bore you with the details of this website or program. Most of my readers are writers so, therefore, know about it. If, by chance, you’re unfamiliar with this endeavor, just click on the link above.
I’m astonished at the writers who take the challenge of 50,000 words in 30 days. That would mean writing 1667 words per day no matter what else is going on in your life. Yes, I have written that many words in one day. In fact, on occasion, I’ve written more. Only it’s never been under this type of time pressure. Even in college, I had two months to finish a term paper or report.
Could it be that the people who sign up for this are just naturally more competitive? In my estimation, they must be. This attribute is one I’m severely deficient in. That is unless I’m sparring against myself. Even then, I’m not one to beat the clock. I usually compete for better quality. You know, “I know I can make this better” type approach. If you put me in a race though, the only way you’re going to win anything from it is to bet against me.
I’m also assuming that those who sign up for NaNoWriM like the connection with other writers as they battle through the month. I do, however, wonder when they find the time to converse when they have such a short deadline. And how do they getting anything written with such disarray? Even in my most leisurely pace, I crave, want and even need peace and quiet, even in my head. I must be totally submerged in the project I’m working on – no distraction – period.
I read somewhere – maybe it was the NaNo site – that a person can learn so much from the November experience. I can’t help but wonder how many people learn that they don’t have what it takes to become a successful writer because someone says you must suffer, cry, pull out your hair and still make that deadline in order to call yourself a writer. Although there are times when I cry, pull out my hair and generally am suffering, the added hell of having a deadline like this would send me over the edge.
This approach may have its place though. If you’re in college (at common college age, that is) and are already geared up for your classes both physically and mentally, this kind of challenge may be thought of as one of your extra curricular activities.
One problem I see that is probably there for many, is that other things in our lives are important too. With many of us, writing is thought of as a second chance to have a career that we love. Our first one was more of a “have-to” to pay the bills no matter how happy we were to go to work every morning.
Another problem with this competition thing is writing is an art. No one goes to the science department at a college to find a class that will teach him or her how to write. The class is found in the Arts and Humanities Department. A painter would have a terrible time working with a deadline. Yes, I know that many do just that. However, these people think of those paintings as their jobs, whereas the time they spend with their own creative minds while they paint is their passion. And it shows in the finished masterpiece. It’s the same for writers.
Nah! I’ll pass on this venture of writing 50,000 words in 30 days. I love writing way too much to do that.
To those of you that are plunging into the event tomorrow, I offer my heartfelt wishes and luck to you. ❤