Chug a Red Bull and channel some artistic inspiration: National Novel Writing Month is approaching. The Internet-driven event, held in November, challenges participants to write a 50,000-word novel in one month. Interested? You can register now on the National Novel Writing Month Web site, but you can’t start writing until Nov. 1. Registration is free. Then, submit your completed novel to the site Nov. 25-30. If the online word counter confirms you’ve met the 50,000-word goal, you’re a winner. At stake: tons of personal satisfaction.
That’s right, your sleep-deprived nights won’t immediately yield instant fame, excessive fortune or an international book tour.
National Novel Writing Month defines “winner” as anyone who meets the word-count goal. Those participants get a “Winner” Web badge and a PDF Winner’s Certificate.
Organizersdon’tkeeporreadany of the submitted novels — but that doesn’t mean it’s cool to type the same word 50,000 times.
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So without a significant tangible reward, what’s the incentive to participate?
The project’s time-sensitive nature forces many writers to dive into an effort they’ve been postponing, organizers maintain.
It’s also a way of curbing excessive perfectionism. Participants enter rapid-fire mode, completing chapters without worrying too much about the specific intricacies of phrasing.
What’s more, writing can seem more fun if you don’t have to worry about being good enough for a cash prize or snagging a competitive publishing deal.
“Art for art’s sake does wonderful things to you. It makes you laugh. It makes you cry. It makes you want to take naps and go places wearing funny pants,” the project’s Web site states.
Inaddition,NationalNovelWriting Month gives participants a chance to interact with other writers.
The project’s Web site includes pep talks from experts, as well as user forums with titles like “This is Going Better Than I’d Hoped.”
When the project started in 1999, it saw 21 participants and six winners.
Last year, there were 119,301 participants and 21,683 winners.
To have an account on the National Novel Writing Month Web site, you must be at least 13 years old.
However,the project has a Young Writers Program Web site that lets participants choose their own word count goal for November.