I participated last year and, for me, the experience had its pros and cons. On the positive side, it forced me to write off the top of my head without the kind of obsessive revising I tend to do with every line of every paragraph no matter what I'm working on. And it focused my attention solely on writing all day, every day. Forget cleaning, cooking, or thinking ahead to the holidays (although I did manage to pull off Thanksgiving in a few spare moments).
On the negative side, it forced me to write off the top of my head without the kind of obsessive revising I tend to do with every line of every paragraph no matter what I'm working on. So, it made me a little anxious. And I wasn't especially proud of the outcome--a loosely told story of a kidnapping that led investigators into the world of international sex trafficking.
Nevertheless, I finished with over 50,000 words in thirty days so at least I earned bragging rights.
Around this time of year distractions seem to mount: the approach of Thanksgiving and Christmas, and the onslaught of winter. I could stay busy all day long and never write a word, so I have to make an effort to stay focused on writing in November. But, instead of joining NaNoWriMo, this year I'm taking an online course in short story writing with Catherine McLean ( www.CatherineEmclean.com ).
I've enjoyed workshops with her at conferences in the past. You can check out some of her writing advice and tricks of the trade at www.WritersCheatSheets.com . I'll keep you posted about what we learn over the next couple of weeks.
Just to let you know, I have about 50% of my Christmas shopping done, my cards are ready to be mailed, menus are planned, and bird feeders are ready.
What will you be focusing on in November?
"Women with clean houses
do not have finished books."
Happy November everyone! Write on!