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I have always heard about the National Novel Writing Month about a week after it’d already started. It sounded like something I’d like to do – that might help that dreaded first draft of a novel take shape. But life was always happening on other fronts. Besides, I reasoned, if it’s possible to write that first draft in a month – I can just do it any old time, when it suits my schedule.

This year, though, I heard about it two weeks early and decided life was slow enough to allow me to jump in. (I do wish my sarcasm font was working right now!)

Actually, what I realized is that an entire year has gone by since I thought, “I could write a novel anytime I wanted to”. The closest I’ve gotten to a completed novel is a stalled first draft. This has led me to reconsider the benefits of peer pressure and accountability.

So – the month of November for me will be characterized by writing a novel. I’m telling you this for multiple reasons.

1)      Things around here might get a little scarce. To make the 50,000 word goal by the end of the month, I’ll be aiming at about 2000 words a day. That’s roughly equivalent to four blog posts. I’m not sure how many other words will be left in me…

2)      The threat of public shaming. Seriously. The NaNoWriMo website promises there will come a time in the month of November when “the only thing keeping you from quitting is the fear of looking pathetic in front of all the people who’ve had to hear about your novel for the past month”. So there ya go. Perhaps the one benefit of being a people pleaser who cares too much what others think of me…

3)      So you have a context for random references to the early 20th century, novel excerpts, or anything else I might post in a moment of brain-cramp. But maybe, too, we’ll have some fun with this together. I’m already enjoying my explorations into the 1920s and plan on reading some of the material that was around back then. So you might just get taken along on the ride!

I signed up officially today and have already started a list of things I need to do to prepare (get other projects finished so they’re not pending, have food ready to go, outline the plot). I’ve also already started feeling overwhelmed by the whole idea and considered giving it up.

Which is why I’m telling you now.

Activating the public shame threat.