The Great American Instant Novel


I spent all weekend slaving over my first novel, pounding the keyboard of my antique typewriter and tossing crumpled, slightly-less-than-perfect drafts over my shoulder. ... Actually, the only fiction I've written in the past 72 hours is the preceding sentence; I spent this weekend at a bachelorette party. But I like the idea of a weekend spent agonizing over a novel, so I'm taking this opportunity to remind you that this is National Novel Writing Month, in which a whole bunch of people (more than 59,000 last year) attempt to write a lot of words (50,000 or more) in a very short amount of time (deadline is November 30).

Because of the limited writing window, the ONLY thing that matters in NaNoWriMo is output. It's all about quantity, not quality. The kamikaze approach forces you to lower your expectations, take risks, and write on the fly. Make no mistake: You will be writing a lot of crap. ... Wrimos meet throughout the month to offer encouragement, commiseration, and -- when the thing is done -- the kind of raucous celebrations that tend to frighten animals and small children.

Well, we're all about frightening small children. If you're participating in NaNoWriMo, let us know, and we'll serialize your work.