Monday, October 31st, 2011 by Rachel

For those of you who don’t know, Nanowrimo is National Novel Writing Month. It always takes place in November. The goal is to write 50,000 words during the month of November, about 1,666 a day. I first learned about Nanowrimo two years ago when an Engl. 1101 student named Sarah asked me if I was doing it. I’d never heard about it or noticed it. I guess, as a poet, I sometimes block out that strange fiction animal. Sarah had been involved with Nanowrimo throughout high school, thanks to an inspirational teacher, and I really appreciate that she made the effort of trying to inspire me. That semester, I “didn’t have the time,” with the chaos of finishing up my first MFA semester, as well as dealing with the unexpected news of Uncle TJ’s death.


I’ve never written a novel. During my time at NAU, I planned, outlined, and began a campus novel. This is a project that I hope to continue at some point, perhaps when we return to Asheville and I am able to spend some time around the campus that inspired my story.


This month seems like the perfect month to try Nanowrimo for the first time. I’ll NEVER “have the time” to try something like this, especially in November. I can’t make excuses, despite that pile of comparison/contrast essays that need to be graded, the jobs that need to be applied for, the house that needs cleaning, the poems that need submitting, the packing up of stuff that will be soon moved to a new location, the planning of a first pescetarian Thanksgiving, the making and buying of Christmas gifts, etc, etc, etc. Everything always gets done. This will be the ultimate exercise in time management.


Nanowrimo says to start from scratch. So I will. I’m not worried about those supposedly important writing devices like plot or setting or dialogue. I’m just going to make sure to write every day. I can always rearrange or revise later. And on top of that, I hope to post regular progress on here. I want this to work out. I want to make it through the 30 days of writing, not just for me as a wannabe fiction writer, but for me as a person and a poet. Wish me luck.