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National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) 2020 / November Word Race! - Ready ... Set ... WRITE!

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by Mira_Jade , Oct 20, 2020.

  1. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 29, 2004
    It's getting colder and creeping up on the end of the year, which means it's almost time for that mad dash to write as many words as possible! It's...


    What is NaNoWriMo?

    At its most basic definition, National Novel Writing Month (aka NaNoWriMo aka NaNo) is writing a 50,000 word novel in the 30 days of November (That's only 1,667 words a day!). Many people get so much more out of it, some people don't, it's really up to you what NaNo is about. Many people don't even write a novel, they are rebels and write short stories, or work on an old project! You'll be doing it along with hundreds of thousands of other crazy people, so don't worry about being alone in your insanity!

    NaNo is not about writing the next best seller (though it has been known to happen) or writing the perfect story, it's all about the writing. Repeat after me: "It's all about the writing." The goal is to get it all out there, get your ideas down and don't worry about editing, grammar or plot holes... those are things that can be taken care of once the writing is done. This is a rough (sometimes very rough) draft. I'll say it again, it's all about the writing.

    If you should decided to take on this challenge, I promise you this: you will write some utter crap so go ahead and turn your inner editor off now or it's going to be a long month. But in writing impetuously, you may find that giving yourself the freedom to just write -without worry- results in some truly amazing prose!

    How do I participate?

    You go to the NaNo website and sign up. Then starting at midnight November 1st (and no sooner!) write your heart out! You can write in a notebook, on your computer, heck, you could write on your walls, just as long as you don't write the same word over and over again!

    Don't forget to check out the official NaNo FAQ.

    I've signed up, what do I do now?

    Well, you can start outlining your story, make your characters, do some research, but remember, no actual writing until November 1st! Any words written before November 1st (in your time zone) don't count toward the word count. If your more of a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants kind of writer you can check out the forums at the official NaNo site and discuss pretty much anything with your fellow Wrimos and discuss the process here with your fellow JCers.


    I know the muse won't cooperate, so why should I even try?

    Do you really know that? Really?

    Give it a shot! Even if you only make a few hundred words, that's more than you had at the start of November! Maybe other people cheering you on will help inspire the muse to keep it going! Remember, it's not really about the word count, it's about the writing!

    What do I get if I win?

    Absolutely nothing!! [face_party]

    But you do get the satisfaction of knowing you wrote 50,000 words in 30 days! We know for some people that's nothing, but for most people, that's incredible! And you have the start to a novel, or an epic fic, or several stories that are ready to be edited and posted!

    But also the NaNo people make some shiny web badges so you can show off to the the internet how awesome you are! There are also a few companies that give you discounts or something free when you win so I guess technically you could win something!

    If you've read this far and decided this isn't for you, just remember you'll never make it if you don't even attempt it. Many, many people don't make it to 50,000 words but there's still a lot of adventure and fun along the way!

    Still not convinced? Tried it before and it's not for you? Feel free to keep tabs on this thread and cheer on those who are participating. We will take all the cheering (and caffeine) we can get!

    So, you've decided to tackle the challenge?

    Awesome! Welcome aboard! We should have a lot of fun! If you plan on participating, post here and we'll add you to the list of participants. As the month goes on, make sure to tell us your word counts so we can cheer you on and update the list! If you have a different name on the NaNo site, let us know so we can friend you.

    Okay, you've explained NaNoWriMo, but what's this about a November Word Race?

    For those of us mere mortals who think that the 50,000 words of NaNo are a bit too much, we are also carrying on with our tradition of a November Word Race for 2020. The rules for the Word Race are very simple: set your own goal for the month of November and then try your best to meet that goal!

    To sign up, post that you intend to participate and what your goal is; be it a daily word count, a weekly word count, or an overall word count goal for the month!

    The same as with NaNo, don't start counting your words until November 1st at midnight in your own time zone. Counting your words stops at midnight November 30th in your own timezone, as well.

    Every few days (or every day, even!) let us know how you are doing. Please post your new words and your total words for the month. If you are doing a daily or weekly goal, you can certainly tell us how that's going, as well!

    If you need a little motivation, you can ask for that too! We'll be here cheering each other on for the month. Together, there's no word count we can't reach! [face_dancing]

    Last edited: Oct 20, 2020
  2. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 29, 2004
    Participant List
    amidalachick (Goal: 4,500 words | Final: 5,072 words)
    Briannakin (Goal: 15,000 words | Final: 15,085 words)
    brodiew (Goal: 8,000 words | Progress: 4,767 words)
    Ceillean (Goal: 10,000 words)
    devilinthedetails (Goal: 5,000 words | Final: 5,000 words)
    Findswoman (Goal: 5,000 words | Final: 5,057 words)
    Kit' (Goal: 10,000 words | Final: 7,274 words)
    Mechalich (Goal: 50,000 words | Final: 51,000 words)
    mavjade (Goal: 4,000 words)
    Mira_Jade (Goal: 30,000 words | Final: 16,894 words)
    moosemousse (Goal: 50,000 words)
    Pandora (Goal: 7,000 words | Final: 2,870 words)
    Pronker (Goal: 6,000 words | Final: 4,869 words)
    Raissa Baiard (Goal: 3,000 words | Final: 4,228 words)
    Seldes_Katne (Goal: 4,000 words | Final: 2,337 words)
    Tarsier (Goal: 10,000 words)
    ViariSkywalker (Goal: 10,000 words | Final: 10,901 words)
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2020
  3. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 29, 2004
    And, to kick off our first Discussion for this thread: have you participated in NaNoWriMo before? How did you do? Do you have any tips or tricks you'd like to share with your fellow writers? Tell us what you're going to be working on!

    As for myself, to get the ball rolling, I think that the full NaNo is a bit beyond my reach at the moment, but I'm going to enter the Word Race with maybe a still somewhat ambitious goal of 30,000 words. I have a WIP or two (or several [face_blush] :oops:) that could use some TLC, and I plan to tie up as many fan fic loose ends as I can during the month of November. How about you guys? :D [face_dancing] [face_mischief]
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2020
  4. Briannakin

    Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic & Costuming/Props Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Feb 25, 2010
    I mean, if there ever was a year to make a legit attempt at NANO, this would probably be it (though I think I said that last year about my personal situation). Unfortunately I don't think my body (or my muse) would ever let me get to 50 000 words in a month (though my ergonomic keyboard is helping). So I'm going to aim for a much more reasonable 15 000.

    Yes, I've tried both Nano and word races before. I think my best was just below the 25k mark. For tips and tricks, I think it's important to go in with a vague plan but be open to wherever the Muse wants to go. Also, the "official" nano "rules" state you can only work on one project... ignore that. If one evening a vignette bunny bites and bites hard, go at it. If you get stuck on your "main" WIP, try something new, maybe even a new fandom.
    Also, remember that words that don't make it into your final story STILL COUNT. If your muse goes down a rabbit hole one day and you wake up the next thinking "I cant use any of this", copy and paste it into a separate word doc because it still counts. Mistakes are part of the writing process (and there are no mistakes, only stories unfollowed).

    As for what I'll be working on, I'm mainly a vignette writer, but recently a shortish story bit me that I kinda want to explore. For those who have watched The West Wing it's a Josh/Sam story. I also have some vignettes I want to work on and Mav's new challenge has some plot bunnies on their hamster wheels. I actually knew Mav was working on this challenge for awhile and I thought I was going to do one thing with it using one of Mav's own vignettes (even though I stole her OCs long ago) but re-reading another one of her stories and a different plot bunny bit so I'm not sure what one to approach her with.
  5. Tarsier

    Tarsier Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jul 31, 2005
    My goal is 10,000 words. Doesn't sound like much, but considering I've written approximately zero words in the last year, it is ambitious for me. I have a few WIPs and some ideas that have been mulling for a very long time that I would like to get on paper (mostly Non-SW). I also have an original story that I was seriously supposed to finish this year that I haven't actually started yet....
  6. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 29, 2004
    Oooh, yes! Pretty much everything @Briannakin said times a hundred. The great thing about joining NaNo here on the boards is that you can jump around from project to project! It's honestly amazing what you can come up with when letting go and just letting yourself write. I have been surprised more than once come December 1st wondering where those words even came from. But, that's half the fun of things like NaNo and our word races. You just relax your expectations, let go of all the stress of editing and plotting and posting, and let your muse take the reins.

    So! That said, who else is going to sign up for this? C'mon, fellow JCers! Let's write! :D [face_batting] [face_dancing]
  7. Kit'

    Kit' Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Oct 30, 1999
    I'm going to take the plunge even though November is traditionally horrific due to drafting/marking/lesson plan making which is why I've never done NaNoWriMo before.

    Sign me up for 10000 words.

    I can do this.
  8. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 29, 2004
    Woot! Of course you can do this! [face_dancing] You're officially signed up and indexed. :D
  9. mavjade

    mavjade It's so FLUFFY! Fanfic Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Sep 10, 2005
    So the muse has been very mean to me recently, so I'm going to set a goal of 1,000 words a week for a total of 4,000. To be honest for me right now that's a pretty lofty goal. I have ideas, but when I sit down to write them.... nope. Nothing. Not even bad stuff.

    I have, many times, but I only made it to 50,000 words one time. I was working night shift and kept my days and nights totally flipped, so on the nights I wasn't working, I had a ton of very quiet time all to my self with nothing else to do because it was the middle of the night! My biggest tip for the full NaNo is just to write, don't worry about what it sounds like or what it is. Also, feel free to skip around, nothing says you have to write lineally. Know how it's going to end? Write that first!

    Also, do your best to keep up with the 1,667 per day if you can. Yeah, missing a day isn't going to put you over the edge, but those words start adding up and as the month goes on, it gets harder to catch up. If you can't get the full thing one day, at least write something everyday so those are words you don't have to make up.

    I think these tips can be applied to the word race too, just scale them for your goal!

    As for what I'll be working on? Whatever the muse lets me work on! Hopefully one of (or some of) the stories I have started with a paragraph or two and that's as far as I got. But I'll take just about anything right now!
  10. devilinthedetails

    devilinthedetails Force Ghost star 5

    Jun 19, 2019
    I do remember really enjoying this event last year and finding that it encouraged me to be productive. Hopefully this year it can do the same since I feel like my muse and motivation took a sort of unscheduled break in October so it would be nice to have my muse return in November.

    I will commit to a modest goal of 5,000 words.
  11. Findswoman

    Findswoman Force Ghost star 5

    Feb 27, 2014
    Always glad to see the word race up and running again—a classic JCF Fanfic institution! :D

    So, once again, I fear the full-on NaNo is not going to work for me; I totally support people doing it, but it’s just at the wrong time of year, and I lead the wrong kind of life (which is why I have never tried it before—though maybe someday, when I’m a retired empty-nester! ;) ). But I’m glad the regular word race is an option, too, and I am always game to try it when it comes around.

    So, I think I will enter with my (by now) usual 5000. I make no guarantees, given as this is 2020 and all, but it’s something to start with, and I’ll see how I do! :)
  12. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Nov 22, 1999
    I am signing up for a modest 3000 words. RL has been slightly less Darth-y lately, and the moose muse is finally getting less intractable, but I can’t count on circumstances permitting me to write anything like 1600 words a day. 100 may be doable—fingers crossed. I’ve started on a couple challenges and I have no shortage of WIPs to work on :p....basically wherever the moose feels like going is what I’ll work on.
  13. LAJ_FETT

    LAJ_FETT Tech Admin and Collecting/Lucasfilm Ltd Mod star 10 Staff Member Administrator

    May 25, 2002
    In past NaNos I've come down with a cold and given it to one of my characters to generate word count. This year you have the chance to infect a whole bunch of characters given the pandemic, and to force them to self-isolate together if they are part of one household. I bet you could get at least 5-10K out of that..
  14. moosemousse

    moosemousse CR Emeritus: FF-UK South star 6

    Oct 3, 2004
    Sign me up for the full 50k. I'm highly doubtful I'll get anything written this year, but I might as well put my name in the hat.
  15. mavjade

    mavjade It's so FLUFFY! Fanfic Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Sep 10, 2005
    Participants List is updated! Let us know if something is missing/isn't correct.

    Truer words have never been spoken!! I think we can all relate to that!
  16. Pandora

    Pandora Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2005
    I'm going to sign up for the Word Race with a reasonable goal of 7000 words.

    As for what I shall be working on: I expect to write most of whatever words I manage on the heap of notebook paper that is the original novel I have been working on since last year (but which I originally came up with when I was an undergraduate in 1994. Yes--1994). I have put it aside several times, with the intention of finishing one of my progressing fanfiction stories, but after I was unable to write more than a few sentences on any of them, gave in and hauled it back out again. I couldn't tell you (if I were to be sternly called to task) why exactly I am writing this particular story, but I do know that I can write it without feeling the fanfiction WIPS chewing at my heels.

    Oh, and I might write a few! paragraphs! on one of those fanfiction WIPS. You never know.
  17. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 29, 2004
    Yay! We've got you in the index @Pandora! [face_dancing]

    Are there any more takers? There's just two more days left in October to go, now. You don't have anything to lose for signing up, and you never know just how far your muse will let you go. [face_mischief] ;)
  18. Seldes_Katne

    Seldes_Katne Jedi Grand Master star 2

    Mar 18, 2002
    I'm going to try for 4,000 words, or three finished WIP stories. Because I really want to get these done....
  19. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 29, 2004
    Woohoo! Done and added. Glad to have you aboard! [face_dancing]
  20. ViariSkywalker

    ViariSkywalker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Aug 9, 2002
    I'll try for 10,000! I got some momentum going over the last two weeks, so maybe I can carry that into November to finish - or get close to finishing - the time travel AU I've been working on for over a decade. [face_thinking] (Yikes, Vi.)

    I've done NaNo a few times in the past, never successfully completed though. 2010 was pitiful, 2013-2015 were pretty decent efforts, another pitiful attempt in 2017, and I haven't done it since. I actually wrote almost nothing from 2018 until this summer. Then my muse went wild, and I've probably written more in the last 4 months than I had in the previous 6 years. So that's cool. :p

    My only tip (and this may or may not work for everyone) is if you find yourself getting stuck on some detail or description or plot point, just make a note about it and then move on. I do not consider myself adept at writing space battles and dogfights, so my writing would always stall whenever I had to come up with the details for those. So during NaNo, I just wrote things like *Anakin comes up with a clever plan to get them out of there* and then I skipped right past it. Obviously I still have to deal with it later, but it helped to keep my momentum going.
  21. Briannakin

    Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic & Costuming/Props Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Feb 25, 2010
    Participant list has been updated!

    My muse has completely shot off in a different direction than what I was thinking just a week ago. It is firmly planted in a completely new fandom. I have a feeling this could either go very well or very poorly. But - and as much as I love The West Wing - I'm kinda glad I'm going to be pretty much setting the fandom completely to the side next month. I may work on a few WIP vignettes but the Schitt's Creek longer-fic I have in my brain is pretty well fully formed. Plus, I'm going to try to make it "readable" for people who haven't seen the show, so that should be good for some word padding.
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2020
  22. amidalachick

    amidalachick Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Aug 3, 2003
    I finally decided I'm going to try for 4,500 words. I have a couple of ideas but since the goal is to just write and not worry about it maybe I'll finally write down the crackfic that's been living in my head since the spring. :p
  23. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 29, 2004
    Yay! You've been added to the index. [face_dancing]

    Are there any more brave souls who want to join us? The clock is ticking . . . [face_mischief]
  24. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Oct 11, 2005
    Okay, Word Race, you see me, and you raise me 8000 words for November? Well that is a sturdy bet. Let's see if I can call. :cool::D[face_worried]
  25. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 29, 2004
    Oooh, I think you can match that. [face_mischief] [face_dancing] It's great to see you sign up! You're added to the index now. :D