NaNoWriMo, aka How to Fail Your Classes in November
If you’re not familiar, the abbreviated gibberish above stands for National Novel Writing Month. The goal is, beginning on November 1, to write 50,000 words—a somewhat short novel, essentially—before the first of December rears its frostbitten head.
Sure, it may sound simple. You probably speak 50,000 words a day. But this is a novel we’re talking about. And if your high school English classes taught you nothing, a novel deals with character development, a vivid setting, the rising actions, a powerful climax, the falling actions, resolution, dialogue, yada, yada. Characters will die. Culture bombs are dropped all over that setting. People have sex. Gasp!
Normal people can’t write that much in a month, and normal people definitely can’t write that much in the month of November. This is America. November is important.
Not only is the end of your fall semester right around the corner, but Thanksgiving is literally at your doorstep. And guess who’s right behind Turkey Day, pulling up in their newly bought, half-priced sedan? Black Friday—the busiest, most important shopping day of the year.
So if you’re participating in NaNoWriMo, you’ve already knocked off three or four days of novel writing thanks to traveling home, turkey, a food coma, shopping, a second food coma, and traveling back to school.
By the way, in case you were wondering, a successful NaNoWriMo participant intends to write almost 17-hundred words day, for 30 straight days.
Factor in the joys of everything mentioned prior, and you’re already behind between five and seven thousand words. But here’s the real pain in your stretchy pant-covered ass.
You’re also in college, working toward a degree to ensure personal success for the remainder of your entire life. Right now, you’re a struggling student with a crappy job, weird working hours, stranger sleeping habits, who still probably enjoys to go out on the weekends.
When all is said and done, you’re left with about a week—tops—of solid time to write a novel. Not even James Patterson could pull that off, and that guy churns out a best-selling crime novel every month. My advice? Don’t do it. It’s a serious pain. You have the rest of your life and countless Novembers to write a novel. And not to mention, the only person I’ve ever heard of who found success due to NaNoWriMo was Water for Elephants scribe, Sara Gruen. Is having Edward Cullen in the feature film adapted from your hugely successful novel really worth running the risk of failing all of your classes in November?
Okay, yeah, maybe.
Tyler Kirk | Bright Futura Staff Writer