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Posted Saturday, October 29, 2011, at 2:32 PM

It's almost time for the 12th annual NaNoWriMo - National Novel Writing Month. If you're not familiar with it, NaNoWriMo, which started out small in 1999 and has since grown to nearly 200,000 participants last year, is the time when writers, from newbys to professionals, set out to write a full, 50,000 novel in 30 days.

NaNoWriMo, starts, naturally, on November 1st, Tuesday, and ends November 30th. The goal is to complete a novel, but of course no one expects it to be a polished piece of work. A rough draft is what most people aim for. In this case, it's quantity, not quality, that counts.

What are the benefits of joining NaNoWriMo? Well, you become part of something bigger; you can sign up at the official website, www.nanowrimo.org, create a username and password, and share your progress and experience with others. It's a good way to smash through writer's block, because you're focused on speed rather than perfection, and there's no better cure for writer's block than writing! It helps reinforce writing as a daily habit. And there's just something about writing with abandon that gets the creative juices flowing; you might very well end up with something unexpectedly wonderful.

I've joined NaNoWriMo a couple of times in the past, but never met the 50,000-word goal. I'm going to join again this year. I may be crazy, but I want to give it another try.

So take a look at the website; again that's www.nanowrimo.org. Let us know if you're going to join the event this year. I will post my progress, good or bad.

"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Albert Einstein

"It is perfectly okay to write garbage - as long as you edit brilliantly." C. J. Cherryh

A Bit of Promotion:

Sunday, November 20th, is the date for Arts on Grand's annual Holiday Book Fair. Many area authors will be there, including Roger Stoner, of Peterson, with his new book, Horse Woman's Child. This is an excellent opportunity to support the arts, and to pick up a few Christmas gifts at the same time!

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I've heard about Nanowrimo for years, but never had teh guts to join. I have joined now, that I know you're going to do it, and a couple of others I know also. 3rd day in and I'm already falling behind. It's hard to write every day!!

-- Posted by DHarris on Thu, Nov 3, 2011, at 1:54 PM

Well, i lasted all of 4 days. Since I'm laid off at this time (a whole 'nother story) I thought this was the perfect time to really immerse myself in a writing project. what I've found is that writing takes a mental toll that's more exhausting than anything i was doing physically. I'm still writing, but can't keep up the pace I tried for at the beginning. i don't know whether to drop out or keep doing what I can, but now i feel paralyzed by indecision;.

-- Posted by fictionfan on Wed, Nov 9, 2011, at 6:09 AM

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Jean Tennant has been writing professionally for more than 30 years. Beginning with short stories, newspaper and magazine articles, she eventually branched out to full-length work, with several novels published by Warner Books, Kensington and Silhouette. Now the owner of Shapato Publishing, LLC, in Everly, Iowa, she teaches writers' workshops throughout the Midwest, for which her schedule can be seen at: www.jeantennant.com. Jean lives in Everly with her husband, Grover Reiser, and their dogs, Kirby and Dakota. Favorite quote: "Outside of a dog, man's best friend is a book. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read." Groucho Marx.
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