National Novel Writing Month (take 2)

Dear community,

I’m a newbie and I ask too many questions and probably bug a lot of people, but I hope that I can find some people amongst you who are interested in the National Novel Writing Month.

Every year people from around the country (and possibly around the world, not sure) get together online at to participate in a one-month novel writing campaign. The goal is to write 50,000 words in one month. The stories can (and should!) be horrible, have bad prose, etc. It’s not the content that counts right then, it’s the quantity. The object of the game is to get people writing down their novel in rough draft form. I know that I suffer from a lot of self-disgust and self-hatred at times when I try to write because I always want my stuff to be perfect the first time out, and thus I never write anything. By putting the emphasis on numbers of words instead of storyline, plot, etc., people are able to overcome their inner censor that tells them, “this isn’t good enough!”

You see, once you get that awful first draft down, then you can go back, revise, make it better, possibly make it marketable, but at least you’ll have had the satisfaction of getting it done.

I’ve never succeeded at this because each time I tried to, during the month of November, my father’s had problems (he got diagnosed with cancer and had to be in the hospital the first year, and then was back in the hospital the second year due to complications).

But I’m determined to actually succeed. I know it’s August, but I want to get other Catholics involved, because this is both a great way to meet other people and a great way to get together a small community that can back each other up.

You can get more information at the website, again: You can also purchase a copy of the book NO PLOT, NO PROBLEM, which was written by the founder of the NaNoWriMo.

I’m looking for people who want to get together and start a MySpace community for Catholic NaNoWriMo authors.

Why Catholic authors?

Simply because we can all agree on a few rules - no graphic sex, no glorifying violence, no Grand Theft Auto attitudes, etc., since it may be that we will want to share some of our writings with each other to give each other ideas. And it’s easier to read someone’s work if you know that you have the same values and you’re not going to be asked, “Is that sex scene realistic?”

Speaking as a 31-year-old virgin, that’s always a tough question to answer…

Anyway! In addition to that I’m also looking for people in the Houston, Texas area near Intercontinental Airport to start a get-together on Mondays for writing purposes. Hence the reason I’m starting now, in August - it’ll give me time to get up a group that’ll function by November. And what’s nice is that after November, the writing can continue! While November is NaNoWriMo, the creators of the campaign encourage people to keep on trying to do their novels-in-a-month any time of the year. Writing for writing’s sake is wonderful, even if (like me) you’re not really interested in publishing. Writing is great; it’s a part of the human structure. I mean, look at the Bible! Christ was a great story teller, using parabels to illustrate a point for his followers. The scriptures themselves are entertianing stories on top of being instructive and moral teaching.

We are meant to write. To that end, I want to encourage as many people as possible to write! NaNoWriMo is the best way I know to get a good group of people together, even if they live states away from each other, and have fun writing.

So, who’s interested?:smiley:


Me !

There was a yahoo group/forum circulating for the Catholic writers once upon a time. It folded after NANO ended but it was a nice group. A few weeks before it starts, check the forums to see if there is any interest in joining group. I’ve done NANO several times. The story I did finish (two years ago) came about because the novel I had started writing was already in progress, so I needed to come up with something different and new though it’s the back story of my novel. It is so much tighter than the novel I’m working on, which is very Catholic, but definitely doesn’t fit into the parameters of the genre. Most of the time my characters usually happen to be Catholic-- but it’s never part of the story. This time, it’s a big part of the story. Grr! I don’t mean that in a negative way, but it’s been a big learning experience writing this story.

Alas, I don’t do MySpace so I won’t be joining your group. I have a my space account but hate it. I prefer Live Journal for community stuff like this and fan-related blogging, but I will keep following this thread with interest to see what happens.

Perfect timing! I’m in the middle of writing my first story. I’ll be checking it out.

Aw man…I don’t want to cheat…guess I will just settle for another story to begin on November 1 :smiley:

I’ve always struggled with writing good dialogue and especially writing good dialogue interspersed with action. When I write my characters, their conversations always come off as if they were talking heads or I just subconsciously avoid dialogue altogether. If not for that then I would probably dabble in novel writing more.

Now when I write historical monographs I have no problem. I’ve continually impressed my professors with my writing.

The nice part about doing a novel in a month is that you have the freedom to write ****** dialogue and do bad plotting and what have you. When you write, you learn by doing. If you’re more concerned with getting a word count than with making everything sound perfect, then you get that internal censor to leave you alone. Once something’s on a page, you can tear it up, burn it, re-write it, put it in a file for later looking-over, etc.

But you can’t do any of that until you get it on paper.

That’s why I like this contest. :thumbsup:

Hmmm. Sounds interesting.

I’m in.

If I can only remember in November.

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