Wednesday, November 2, 2022

What's so great about NaNoWriMo anyway?


Welcome to the first Wednesday of the month. You know what that means! It's time to let our insecurities hang out. Yep, it's the Insecure Writer's Support Group blog hop. If you're a writer at any stage of career, I highly recommend this blog hop as a way to connect with other writers for support, sympathy, ideas, and networking. If you're a reader, it's a great way to peek behind the curtain of a writing life.

Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG. This month's co-hosts are: Diedre Knight, Douglas Thomas Greening, Nick Wilford, and Diane Burton!

November 2's optional question - November is National Novel Writing Month. Have you ever participated? If not, why not?


NaNoWriMo has been helping me since 2013. I'm an eight time player, and four time winner. One of the books I wrote for NaNoWriMo is now a published novel--the third in the Menopausal Superhero series

I've written about it before on this blog:

I last participated in 2021, working on the novel that I'm still working on now. I'm strongly considering participating (it's still October as I write this--I have a few more days to decide) this year again to give myself some pressure and impetus to finish a draft. 

What I love about NaNoWriMo is the sense of accountability and community. Sometimes I need a little outside pressure, a feeling that someone is watching and I need to make a good showing. 

No one has ever been mean about it when I didn't make my goal--that's not the vibe of the event at all. I even threw my hat in some years in the full knowledge that it was impossible that year, where my secret goal was just more words than I would have written otherwise, maybe 30K when I'd been averaging 20K a month for a while. 

It helps me stop overthinking, because I have to work fast to make that word count. There isn't time to dither too long over details that maybe won't even matter in the final draft. 

It helps me carve out the time from all my other responsibilities and to make sure my novel takes the priority in my limited writing time each day--protecting it from marketing and social media work, for example. 

If I'm participating in a challenge that I know is short term, there's a sharpness of focus and purpose that comes. I feel less guilty about the stuff I'm NOT doing so I can do NaNoWriMo, precisely because it is "only for a month." 

How about you writer friends? Do you NaNoWriMo? And reader friends, do you have challenges you participate in to boost your productivity or give focus to something you love? I'd love to hear about it all in the comments. 


  1. That's great that NaNo helps you be motivated and to carve out more writing time. No, I don't do NaNo. I don't have enough time for it in November.

  2. I love participating in NaNo events—and for a lot of the same reasons you listed above. This year, I have exactly zero hopes for a win, but I'm still looking forward to seeing where I am when December rolls around.

    (And even though it's November now, there's still time to sign up...)

  3. I agree with your reasoning. I did make time and push myself forward when I signed up. It was a great experience. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

  4. I think you nailed it on the head. The accountability and community is what make nanowrimo great.

    I haven't participated as much as I'd like, now that I think about it. I do like you can set your own goals and participate outside of November now.