It is November… It's time to write…
The time of NaNoWriMo is nearly upon us. All over the world, crazy geeks will undertake the challenge to write a novel of at least 50 000 words in just 30 days. I interviewed Toronto ML (Municipal Liaison) Victoria Anisman-Reiner, a.k.a. Oilsdragon, about the additional challenges of behind-the-scenes event co-ordination.
1. How did you first hear about NaNoWriMo and what made you want to do it?
I heard about NaNo from a friend on a spirituality forum for indigo kids, back in October of 2005. I had been "trying" to write novels for years… and I say that in quotations because I wasn't trying very hard. I didn't think I had the discipline to stick with it, and I kept getting discouraged 2 or 3 chapters in when the caliber of my writing didn't live up to what I was expecting of myself. The minute I heard of NaNoWriMo, I knew I had to do it. I didn't know how I'd make time, but I was going to do this crazy thing.
NaNo is one of my favourite things in the world. I've participated every year since 2005 and I love it. At the end of November, 2007, the Toronto ML was looking for a co-ML to assist him the following year, and I volunteered! I've been part of the organizing team ever since.
About the same as anyone trying to coordinate a large group of determined, creative people! Plus you're trying to write your own novel, on top of the organizational role. It's a lot to juggle sometimes, but it's totally worth it.
I don't think I can list just one favourite… but for starters, I love the creative community. I've met amazing people through NaNo, including some of my closest friends. I've also built a freelance writing career for myself since my first NaNoWriMo in 2005. Although the initial contacts that got me here weren't through NaNoWriMo, I think that the confidence to put my writing out there and came in part from the belief in myself I've gained as a result of NaNo.
I adore the creative rush and the spirit of NaNoWriMo, and it's not overstating the facts to say that it's changed my life. There's absolutely nothing like it in the world.
I think everyone should do NaNo at least once in their life ;)
What have you got to lose? One month of your life – and you could learn so much about yourself and meet such awesome people. Clear your calendar, come out to events, and give it a shot! I believe that anyone can win if they put in the time and get involved.
The secret to NaNo success is to get involved – either at events or online, in chat and in the forums – and to never look back. Don't reread, don't revise, don't edit, just keep on writing! I'm rooting for you.
Thanks, Victoria. See you in the Toronto NaNo chat…
Which happens to be here. This Toronto-based chat is open to everyone. Other cities have their own chats as well, but I (Tamara) am only recommending something with which I am familiar. I can honestly say that this is a great group, and we'd love to meet you.
As another WriMo, I concur that NaNo is a life-changing experience. There's still time before November starts. Jump in!
-Tamara Hecht, a.k.a. CaptainQuirk