Beth Camp Historical Fiction

Wednesday, November 02, 2022

IWSG November 2: NaNoWriMo Already?

Yesterday began NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month), and while I'm not quite ready to commit to writing 50,000 words in one month, this writing challenge always takes me in new directions. 

The Insecure Writer's Support Group question this month simply wants to know if I've ever participated in NaNoWriMo. And why or why not?

Several writers I know surprised me by saying just the thought of trying to write 50,000 words in one month is too overwhelming. But you can be a NaNoWriMo rebel -- and set your own goals! Or you can be a purist and go for the gold. Yes, attempt to write 1,666 words every single day! I've found that pushing myself (perhaps not every single day) to write more than the meager 250-500 words a day I normally attempt really does lead to interesting insights.

Perhaps those of us writers who participate in IWSG's monthly post are particularly prone to sign up for NaNoWriMo. After all, we set challenges for ourselves all the time, right? Something deep inside me chirps to life whenever someone says, "Oh, I don't think you can do that!" 

Participating in NaNoWriMo over the last decade has helped me flesh out five books, write unexpected poems (that writing challenge comes around in April, National Poetry Month), and celebrate a very personal commitment to writing. Not every day goes well, but isn't that rather like life? We can accept a challenge and decide exactly how we want to respond. Sometimes, despite our best efforts, the results are not quite what we want. For writers, that just means revision. And more revision.

Other News:  While my to-be-read pile is piled up much too high, the Insecure Writer's Support Group has a book club on GoodReads! This month's suggested books both look interesting -- as does the follow-up discussion highlighted in this poster. I just might 'see' you there. 

About IWSG: One of the strengths of posting on the first Wednesday of each month for the Insecure Writer's Support Group for me is connecting with other writers. I appreciate learning what other writers think about the goals they've set, the progress they're making, and the support we offer each other. At times, we all need that connection. Writers do need readers as well. And reviews. And new ideas. Facing down that blank page, or a messy outline without a clear plot, or revising a scene that wanders -- the list goes on! -- all is a little less daunting when we connect with other writers and readers.

May November, despite hints of snow this coming week, 
be very good to you and your writing!

And please consider dropping by to thank IWSG's co-hosts for this month: Diedre Knight, Douglas Thomas Greening, Nick Wilford, and Diane Burton!


  1. Good point on setting your own word goals for NaNo. All new words are words you didn't have previously. And yes, if the story isn't quite what you wanted, at least its out of your head and on the page so it can be revised. Empty pages can't be edited. :) Good luck with your writing this month!

    1. Occasionally I do make that daily word goal -- something to celebrate, but the story is what drives the writing, yes? Thank you for visiting!