Write It Sideways

NaNoWriMo: How To Write A Novel In 30 Days

NaNoWriMo–National Novel Writing Month–is coming soon. From November 1st-30th, writers far and wide will be writing their hearts out in the attempt to produce a novel in 30 days. So, what’s involved, and how can you have some hope of achieving this lofty goal?

How It Works

You must produce a 50,000 word piece of fiction, from scratch, by midnight on November 30th. NaNoWriMo works on the honour system.

Pros: No entry fees; forces you to write a lot over a short period of time; you have nothing to lose by entering.

Cons: No prizes, so less motivation; you’ll probably produce writing of questionable quality under such constraints; it’s easy to quit because there are no consequences.

Do the pros outweigh the cons? That’s a decision you’ll have to make for yourself. You can check out the full details here or browse their FAQs.

Does NaNoWriMo Increase My Chances of Getting Published?

It’s the question everyone wants to know: will I be writing something publishable during this contest?

Currently, there’s a list of 35 authors on the NaNoWriMo site who’ve been published after participating. Keep in mind, said novels were probably reworked and highly polished after the contest.

Apparently Harlequin encourages NaNoWriMo participants to submit their romance manuscripts after the competition. So, if this is your genre, you might have a crack at publishing your novel.

How To Write A Novel In 30 Days

If you decide to enter NaNoWriMo, how do you plan to get that book written in such a short time? Here are some tips to keep you on track as you race to the finish line:

Will you take part in NaNoWriMo this November? Please share your tips and any previous experiences with us.