How Do You Do November?

In honor of National Novel Writing Month, we caught up with one of our staffers, Camera Martin, for the following prompt.

We’ve reached that time of year that I believe every aspiring author should take advantage of at least once in their lives: Nanowrimo. Nanowrimo stands for National Novel Writing Month. Every November, millions of people in the US and internationally, set out to do the seemingly psychotic task of writing an entire novel in a month. The goal is to write 50,000 words in the course of 30 days, coming out on top with the first draft of your masterpiece.

Believe me, the first time I heard about this competition, I was baffled how anyone could write that much in such a short amount of time without having a doctorate in English. But behind all the disbelief and self-doubt was this small poke at my heart that flared up this sudden burst of adrenaline: I needed to try. Despite taking 16 credits that semester, and a serious last minute dash to outline my novel, I dove in on November 1st and wrote the first chapter of my novel. The feeling that engulfed me the rest of the month can only be described as euphoric. It was as though I gained access to some newly formulated drug at its most pure and potent form, and instead of the initial high being the most rewarding, every day brought a release more delicious than the last.

What I learned to do during that month was more than just write for hours on end. I learned how to turn off my inner editor so that I could let all my ideas out without worrying about making it perfect. I learned how write myself out of the corners I backed myself into, I learned how to get creative, I learned how to stop worrying about how many words I was or wasn’t writing. Nanowrimo taught me that the author of a book isn’t someone who wrote the book immaculately in one go, but rather someone who wasn’t afraid to give their time, day after day, until the job was done. I Nanowrimo for the same amazing sense of pride and inspiration you receive when you hit that 50k, and realize, “I did that.” And that’s why you should Nanowrimo.

~Camera Martin

For more information on National Novel Writing Month, please visit our friends at

Working on something shorter? Send us your short stories, essays, poetry and other prose by December 1st to be considered for our first publication!

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