Why I’m not doing NaNoWriMo

How well I could write if I were not here!Why am I not doing NaNoWriMo this year?

The short answer: I’m doing Personal Thesis Writing Month. Unfortunately, PoTheWriMo just sounds… wrong.

The long answer: It doesn’t serve my goals.

I’ve got somewhere around 30,000 words (more than half of NaNo’s goal) featuring two characters I really enjoy. I do not have more than half (or even a third, given my genre’s trend towards 90k wordcount novels) of a novel, and I know the difference.

NaNoWriMo does a lot of things really well for a lot of people, and that’s great. I don’t have anything against the project; it definitely serves to get a lot of people past the hump of not writing. For me, turning out a novel in 30 days would leave me with a lot of words and exhausted burnout. That’s not a goal that would be useful for me; I couldn’t keep up that pace.

I got to see Tobias Buckell again over the weekend. He taught “The Building Blocks of a Novel” at my local library. He reminded me that a hundred thousand word novel is only 500 words each business day. Two pages a day. No weekends or holidays.

Sure, I’d heard that before, but at this point I know I have the skill to do two pages (or more) a day, just during lunch breaks.

And that would still leave evenings for my thesis. Score!

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One Comment

  1. October 19, 2010

    Amen! NaNoWriMo sounds like a recipe for burnout to me, especially since the end of fall quarter falls smack in the middle of the month.

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