November has arrived, and you all know what that means!
Did you get that? Na-No-Wri-Mo.
Before I discuss what this gibberish- looking-word means, let me talk about writing. I’ve brought this topic up before (Read: My Journaling Journey), but this time, I thought I’d share a different side of my hobby.
Naturally, one would assume that I like to write, because I have a blog. I mean, that is true. I do write because I like it. However, there is more to writing than just scribbling words down onto a piece of paper–hoping somebody will care to read them.
Let me explain:
I’ve been writing since I was a child. It’s therapeutic, and it allows for me to find some inner peace.
When you write, the world is listening. You don’t need an audience to express yourself, and I think that that’s pretty amazing.
Writing is sort of like climbing a mountain. You trek your way up through nature’s trails, hoping you’ll reach the top without facing any obstacles. But, you soon realize that that’s not the case. You will struggle, it will be difficult, and you will be on the verge of giving up, when it suddenly hits you:
You’ve reached the peak of the mountaintop. A beautiful, majestic view awaits you, and you take it all in. The hollow, desperate state you were in minutes ago suddenly disappears, and you realize that the struggle was merely a hiccup. It was worth it.
I know this sounds a bit cliché, but that’s what writing is like. Well, to me at least. A writer goes through plenty of obstacles when attempting to pen a story in a set amount of time. It takes concentration, and determination to write, and that’s what NaNoWriMo is all about.
National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, was created by freelance writer Chris Baty in 1999. Its goal is to encourage creative writing (or writing in general) among the masses. On November 1, participants begin working towards the goal of writing a 50,000-word novel by 11:59 PM on November 30. There is a deadline, and there is even a platform to share your novels at the end of the month. In order to win, participants must write 1,667 words per day (the writing itself goes through their website–so you cannot cheat).
Here’s a 2015 calendar:
Many New York Times best-selling authors have written (or started to write), their books during/for, NaNoWriMo.
Here’s a list of some notable published novels:
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, published by Algonquin Books (this eventually became an incredible film, with Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon starring as the lead characters)
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, published by Doubleday
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, published by St. Martin’s Press
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins, published by Dutton Juvenile
Clearly, November is a huge month for writers. The outcome of this month-long “holiday” is unbelievable. There’s so much creativity flowing between people, and the end result is a collection of beautifully-crafted literary masterpieces.
Now, I’m not writing a novel. But, I will be participating in NaNoWriMo in another way. I will be following writing prompts every day to stay consistent with my writing. I journal–and those journaling prompts will assure that I write everyday (I’m setting the 50,000-word goal for myself as well). Being a college student, and extremely stress-ridden (it’s in my nature), I don’t have much time to write. I always cut time out of my life to write my blog posts, but I still barely have time to do that (Fun Fact: I’m sitting on a boat as I write these words).
Anyways, for those of you who despise writing, and cannot understand why there would be a whole month dedicated to the craft: try it. Try writing something. From a journal entry about your morning, to a poem about how Fall foliage makes you feel, there are plenty of options. You don’t necessarily have to write a novel. Just write something.
If you want to learn more about NaNoWriMo, click here: National Novel Writing Month
Just because mainstream media doesn’t care to show you what really goes on in the world, does not mean that this crisis is over.
DONATE TO THE UNHCR HERE: Refugee Fund
There are also a ton of clothing/supply drives going on all over the Tri-State area (AKA around NYC). The International Rescue Committee: New York is always in need of volunteers. Click here to learn more.