Want to write a novel next month? You should sign up for the Camp NaNoWriMo challenge in July.
In this encore edition of the Morning Media Menu, we spoke with journalist and author Nora Zelevansky about how National Novel Writing Month changed her career. Press play below to listen to the interview on SoundCloud.
NaNoWriMo takes place every November, but the organizers created Camp NaNoWriMo to give writers an alternative time for the writing challenge.
It’s something that feels good every day, like an exercise routine. You work for whatever the allotted amount of time is for you and you feel like you’ve accomplished something. For me, it’s not unlike morning pages (if you’ve ever done The Artist’s Way), a chance to clear your head and take yourself outside your everday life and immediate world, and immerse yourself in a fictional world. It’s super freeing.
She also offered this advice:
If you have a day where you don’t get to your 1,600 words, my advice is not to be too hard on yourself. You have to do what you can do. There will be days when you write more and days when you will write less. That’s really an okay thing. We get exhausted, we get sick, we get burned out. And that’s okay. That’s my biggest piece of advice.
She also explained how she applied these lessons to her second novel:
I’m following the rules that would apply anyway during [NaNoWriMo]. They keep telling you during that process that the plot will just come. I thought it wasn’t possible and I didn’t believe it, but it really does just come out. And that’s a fantastic thing. It happens whether you do it in November or some other month helps.