NaNoWriMo 2012: Writing Season Commences


Many writers require inspiration to write. Others are disciplined and write daily. Whatever type we are, we could benefit from goals, productivity, and discipline. That’s why there are writers challenges.

One could arguably say that writers challenge season starts in November. the writers challenges includes monthly contests full of daily prompts and online networking for writers from around the world. Most of the limelight goes to National Novel Writing Month (#NaNoWriMo). In fact, at a writing presentation I did recently one Peruvian student asked if I was participating in NaNoWriMo 2012.


Well, because we don’t all write novels– or even fiction for that matter– we have options, I answered. Here are a few:


During last year’s season, I participated in NaNoWriMo, the SER Writers Regimen in December, National Travel Writers Month, then Robert Lee Brewer’s April challenge (#MNINB) to build an author’s platform.


Looking forward to the Write Nonfiction in November writing challenge. Many other writers are participating in NaNoWriMo 2012.

This year instead of trying to formulate my nonfiction goals and need through NaNoWriMo 2012, I’ll focus on NaNonFiWriMo. Likely some literary question will snag me along the way but there are answers. After all, host Nina Amir’s web site will feature daily “blog posts written by experts in writing, publishing and promoting nonfiction of all sorts.”



No, I won’t be completing my book. Yes, I will be progressing through it. Unless you’re Henry Miller, writing 50,000 words in 30 days is tantamount to assembly line quality production. That’s what publishing editors are oft quoted as saying in online zines such as Salon or Slate, anyway. Perhaps that a result of those writers fiercely competing over something as trivial and anti-literary as word count.


However, other writers approach NaNoWriMo in earnest, in a manner carefully planned. Some have learned several literary lessons or otherwise grown as a writer since last year’s challenge. Many have painstakingly drawn out a plan that even New Urbanists would approve of.


My plan is, as I mentioned earlier, to take a major leap forward in my book. I had a mini literary breakdown that I refuse to call writers block in July that kept me stalled at the writers red light until just a couple weeks ago. My reemergence appeared suddenly as a buoy released from an underwater hold, and I penned an outline of the next three chapters of my book. My goal for November, the commencement of writers challenge season, is to flesh out those three chapters. That will complete the first section of my book, after which perhaps I’ll address another section for the December challenge. But I don’t want to get ahead of myself.


These challenges are marathons. They require perseverance, not quick creative bursts. They’re learning experiences. They’re fantastic opportunities to meet new writer friends. Better still, they force you to sit down and bloody well write.


Fear Not

In case you’re still not inspired to participate, or even to rite for a few moments, how about a word from Annie Dillard?

  • ‘(The writer) must have faith sufficient to impel and renew the work, yet not so much faith he fancies he is writing well when he is not. For writing a first draft requires from the writer a peculiar internal state which ordinary life does not induce.’
  • ‘A work in progress quickly becomes feral. It reverts to a wild state overnight. It is barely domesticated, a mustang on which you one day fastened a halter, but which now you cannot catch. As the work grows, it gets harder to control…You must visit it every day and reassert your mastery over it. If you skip a day, you are, quite rightly afraid to open the door to its room.’


Find out what others are saying about NaNoWriMo 2012.

5 thoughts on “NaNoWriMo 2012: Writing Season Commences

  1. Claudsy/Claudette Young

    Thanks for the additional info, Nichole. Right now I’m doing both the November PAD Challenge and NaNoWriMo. It’s a touch gig, but someone’s got to nuts enough to do more than one at a time. I’ve done the Blog-a-Day challenge three times. That’s exhausting; for more than these other two.

    I do enjoy a good challenge, and you’re provided others I hadn’t known of previously. Naughty girl, now I must investigate those as well. See you on the flip side.

    1. Nichole L. Reber Post author

      You’re an ambitious one, Claudette. So loving that!
      Best of luck. Let the good words flow.

  2. Nichole L. Reber Post author

    I just found out about Robert Lee Brewer’s PAD (Poem-A-Day) Chapbook Challenge that’s run on his Poetic Asides blog for November:

    “Each day, there is a new prompt posted. Each day, poets from around the world respond to that prompt with their poems. At the end of November, poets should have 30+ poems written which they can turn into a 10-20 chapbook manuscript to submit to me by early January,” he said.

  3. Nichole L. Reber Post author

    Thanks for the addition. That’s a good one!
    Cheers and best of luck if you’re participating in NaNoWriMo or WNFIN. Two more days ’til liftoff.

  4. Alyce Wilson

    Great list!

    Don’t forget about National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo), where poets challenge themselves to write one poem a day throughout the month of April.


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