I’m Not Doing NaNo This Year

Hello, gentle readers! And hello to those more rambunctious readers as well.

Yes, you read that title correctly. I’m not doing National Novel Writing Month this year. At least, not in the traditional sense. Honestly, this wasn’t an easy decision to make, but I know I’m making the right decision for me at this time.

So, let me get into it.

(Note for anyone here who doesn’t know what I’m talking about when I say NaNo: National Novel Writing Month is a month-long challenge during the month of November, during which writers endeavor to write a complete novel or 50,000 words of a novel.)

Why No NaNo?

A lot of it has to do with how heavily political and liberal the NaNoWriMo community has become.

NaNo began as a great little corner of the world for writers who wanted to write. And it was lovely and perfect. I first discovered NaNo in 2012 and I ended up doing two different NaNo challenges that year, one in April with my story Children of a Legend, and then an official one in November with the same book. I participated again in 2013 with my Cinderella retelling, Secret of the Hazel Tree. Unfortunately, NaNo and college don’t mix all that well so I took a break from 2014-2017 to use November for school. In 2018, after graduation, I was back at it with a three-year run working on a Twelve Dancing Princesses retelling, The Twelfth Kingdom, which (even though it boasts far more than 150K words) is not yet completed. Last year, I veered from tradition and wrote two books, some of the next installments of my Twist Tale series.

So, apparently I have a history with NaNo. It’s become very special to me, as not only as I’ve used the challenge to get a lot of writing done, but I’ve made some really good friends through the NaNo community.

But now NaNo, like many other groups and parties in our country today, is using their platform to push their own agendas. It’s not just about writing anymore. The community has grown steadily more liberal, and the NaNo brand has become tainted by things that aren’t even connected to writing. It’s both sad and disgusting that people are using everything they can to force their opinions on other people. I’m no longer comfortable aligning myself with the NaNoWriMo brand if they’re going to promote things that I believe are sinful.

Now, I’m not sure yet if I’m going to quit the official NaNo completely for every year to come, but for this year, this is the right decision for me.

I also have an extremely personal reason for not wanting to do NaNo this year. Because for the first time in nine years, I am getting to spend Thanksgiving with my family. As much as I love writing, I don’t want to be tucked away at my computer when I could be catching up and enjoying the holiday with my family.

Which segways into another point: NaNo comes at the worst of times, doesn’t it? I mean, we’re always busy, but November always seems like it is busier than it ought to be with Thanksgiving and the upcoming Christmas season. I love Thanksgiving and Christmas, but I feel that I barely take the time to enjoy Thanksgiving during NaNo because I’m so paranoid about my writing and hitting that elusive 50K. And then after November 30th, I fall into December absolutely exhausted and find myself neck deep in Christmas and I’m not ready for it. I’d like to enjoy my holidays this year, if I can. Especially since this year they promise to be quite busy and packed with family.

So No Writing?

Au contraire, my good friends. I am still writing. I haven’t done so many 50K word months that I’m ready to just sign it off completely. Besides, I’ve always been enough of a NaNo rebel that it’s not unthinkable for me to do something somewhat out of the ordinary.

Banner stolen from Christine’s site here.

One of my very beloved friends, Christine, is hosting a new kind of writing challenge, basically NaNo without the sting of the brand. It’s essentially the same rules as the original NaNo (or a Camp NaNo, if you will) in which writers endeavor to write. And the dates are changed. It’s amazing. Instead of writing all November long and suffocating the holidays with words, Christine’s challenge — now lovingly called the Fall Fic Frenzy — begins on October 15th and runs until November 15th. SO YOU GET YOUR HOLIDAYS FREE. *cue Yzma’s voice* It’s brilliant, brilliant, brilliant, I tell you! You can read all about in her post here.

What’s the Plan?

I am returning to Operation Muttonchops, or my Twist Tale series. It’s my hope to complete the challenge in 30 days (so if you do the math, that ends on November 13th) with the typical 50K words, but split between the next two books of the Once Upon a Twist Tales. Last year, I penned books five and seven, and this year my plan is to write books six and eight. I’ve put some extra prep into planning a bit more of my stories this year, so hopefully we won’t run into too many issues with characters not wanting to cooperate like last year.

But that’s the fun of writing, isn’t it?

I’m excited about this new challenge, and I’m looking forward to diving headfirst into my story on October 15th as part of the Fall Fic Frenzy. And, if all goes according to plan, that may leave me with some free time for other THINGS. You may want to stay tuned…

Anyone else out there participating in the Fall Fic Frenzy? Anyone doing the official NaNo? Let me know!

God bless!

3 thoughts on “I’m Not Doing NaNo This Year

  1. I’m so, SO happy you’re jumping into FallFic!!! And very glad the scheduling works for you because YES. Trying to write all November was so hard and really took away from the holidays. I think starting and ending two weeks early will help in keeping us writing for a month but not take away from what’s supposed to be the best time of year! I’m so glad others want to join me in this. It fills me up and keeps me motivated. ❤

    And EEP. Yaaaay for more Once Upon a Twist Tales things being written! I do so hope it all goes absolutely wonderfully!


    1. Thank YOU for kickstarting the FallFic! I’m excited to see how the new schedule will work with the holidays. AND I’M SO STINKING EXCITED NOT TO BE WRITING ON THANKSGIVING. I always end up feeling so guilty if I take a day or two off for Thanksgiving. Now I don’t have to! *happy dance*

      Well, whether or not it all goes wonderfully, it’ll definitely be interesting. XD I’ll be working with some new characters who are promising to be rather fiesty, and then I’ll have a passel of old characters who’ve already proven themselves to be a handful.


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