Why NaNoWriMo?

This year I will be participating in NaNoWriMo for the fourth time.  Hopefully, I will "win" it for the second time.

I get a lot of mixed opinions when I tell people I'm trying to write a 50,000 word novel in a month.  One thing I've heard from a few other writers is that they don't do NaNoWriMo because they prefer quality over quantity.

Good for you.  In my opinion, that should be the aim of writing.  Writing, after all, is an art.  It shouldn't matter how long your writing is, but the quality of how it is written.

And I confess, in past NaNoWriMos, I have forgone quality for quantity.  So why do I still do it?

For me, I think the motivation is in the pressure.  If I didn't have a time where I could tell myself, "Okay, you have to sit down and add two thousand words to your plot right now," I would never get anywhere.  Sure, I get lots of ideas, little inklings and small congestions of thought that I write down on sticky notes or the margins of school notes or scattered files on my laptop.  But that's all they are.  Little inklings.  Small thoughts.

If I didn't feel the pressure that NaNoWriMo provides, I would probably write nothing but these small things and maybe a page or two of fanfiction.

The NaNoWriMo challenge gives me a time to let myself go.  It's a good excuse to write down whatever comes to mind and then completely empty your mind.  It's a good excuse to be messy(artfully, of course).  It makes me feel like a real writer.

A 50,000-word novel written over the course of 30 days.  Quantity?  Check.  Quality?  Maybe lacking.

But now there's a full novel written down from beginning to end.  You have your block of marble, now be Michaelangelo and chisel it into art.


World peace and love,
Heather

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