NaNoWriMo begins again. I’m not ready.

I’m not sure how November snuck up on me, but here we are. It’s Nov. 2 and NaNoWriMo is in full swing. For those unfamiliar, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. Every November, writers are challenged to write 50,000 in 30 days. There is no monetary gain if you win. Just a PDF you can print of and say “I did this thing.”

I’ve participated in NaNoWriMo for several years now. I’ve won some and I’ve lost some. But every year I start a project with at least SOME idea of what I’m going to be working on for the month. Not this year.

This year, I logged onto my computer and saw someone post about Day 1 of Nano, and I was like… oh, crap. It’s Nov. 1st already. I HAVEN’T PLANNED! I don’t have an outline, let alone an idea!

Cue the panic. I posted a picture of my worried mug on social media in fact lamenting the fact that I didn’t have a stinking clue what to write about.


Nanowrimo starts today…who else is regretting their life choices already? #writersoftiktok #booktok #nanowrimo2021 #authorsoftiktok

♬ original sound – daniellebannisterbooks

Thankfully, my dear friend, Kelly Hewins, came to the rescue with a nugget of an idea: Your protagonist inherits a bunch of money, but it comes with a catch.

Wheels began to churn in the old noggin. A story scene popped into my brain. And just like that, I was off and running for day 1, easily making the daily word count goal of 1,667 words a day. In fact, I wrote a whole extra word just to snub my nose at the challenge. Ha.

Using that first bit of words, I was able to break out my notebook (you know how I love my book notebooks) and start thinking a bit harder about how this story might develop. I feel more prepared now.

Does this mean I feel confident that I will ‘win’ this year now that I have an idea? ABSOLUTELY NOT. I don’t typically write every day, nor do I typically write that many words in a day, so this will still be a challenge to finish a ROUGH first draft. The key is to just write. Don’t edit. Don’t go back. Don’t second-guess. There isn’t enough time during this challenge to do that. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to Write All the Words, Danielle.


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