Wicker King (jtoomey) wrote,
Wicker King
jtoomey

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NaNoWriMo

So, three people whose journals I occasionally peruse have decided that NaNoWriMo is, to some extent, bad.

One decided that, to paraphrase, if these people had a novel inside them burning to come out, they'd go ahead and write it like a real author instead of compromising its quality by stuffing it into a "stunt." He added that NaNoWriMos were, in essence, poseurs who just wanted to be able to claim that they had written a novel, dahling.

( I particularly enjoyed his division of himself from 'these people.' )

Another declared that NaNoWriMo's focus on quantity rather than quality -- and I agree that said focus really does exist -- was not his style.

( Hey, he was reasonable about it. 'These people.' Sheesh. )

A third proclaimed that if he wanted to 'shit out 50,000 words,' he was quite capable, but that he'd do the deed in private rather than airing it in public.

Funny, I never counted myself as a poseur. I suppose most poseurs don't, though, do they; that's kinda the point.

I think the concept which is being flagrantly disregarded, missed, and sidestepped (in that order) is that it is often more profitable to get something down and, later, rework it than it is to rework as you write. Writing doesn't flow for most people, myself included; I find myself honing sentences for hours that I inevitably come back and rephrase again a few chapters later. If I could get myself to throw down the whole story -- not perfectly, and not necessarily beautifully -- on paper, then I would be able to rework the tale as a whole, coherently, rather than piece by recursive piece.

NaNoWriMo has never, to my knowledge, claimed that what you come out with on December first will be your final product. That's quite simply not the point. The point is that most of us have a tendency to procrastinate and perfect, and this approach leads to a 'novel' which sits in the backs of our heads (and, at least in the case of the first few chapters, the backs of our closets) for the rest of our lives, never emerging in any physical form.

I'm highly unlikely to finish by the end of November, but I'd like to think that the company of others who are also attempting to 'shit out 50,000 words' might get me a bit further than I would have gotten on my own. Quality will come; we poseurs need some quantity first.
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