National Novel Writing Month

NaNoWriMo

November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo for short…if you consider that short). I know many writers and lovers of literature consider it a fun month where people who have been putting off writing a novel finally receive the encouragement they need to finish the Great American Novel…but I don’t. I HATE it! That’s right; I hate National Novel Writing Month.

It offends me almost as much as when I went to see “LotR: Return of the King,” the culmination of the greatest cinematic masterpiece ever seen on film and some guy brought his stupid kid with him who hadn’t seen the fist two movies and kept asking questions like “Who’s that?” and “Why are they fighting?” throughout the entire movie. It’s amateur hour. It’s tourist season. It’s a tidal wave of n00bs!

It’s offensive to me and should be to everyone else who works as a serious writer. You can’t even write a novel in a month. You can write a shitty novel in a month. But that means nothing. Because writing the novel is the easy part. It’s the revision process where the real writing is done, and THAT takes a lot longer than a month. That’s why it takes people years to write a novel. They rewrite it a dozen times. No one sits down and writes a novel from beginning to end and turns out a perfect product.

I know I sound like a snob, but writing is sacred to me. It takes dedication and sacrifice to even be half decent at it. It’s not something you can do in a month. If you’re going to be a writer, you better have more than a month to dedicate to it. You better have your ass in front of that computer or typewriter every single day for months…for years. You better be willing to sacrifice your other hobbies, time with friends, time with your family if you want to dabble in the same profession that Hemingway and Fitzgerald and Vonnegut dedicated their lives to.

I’m writing a novel this month. I was writing one last month, too. And guess what? I’ll be writing one next month, too, when all the NaNoWriMos are off crocheting or whittling wood, or whatever bullshit they’ve taken up. And a year from now I’ll be working on the novel still.  And you know why?

Because I’m a writer…this month and all the months to come.

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~ by themoderntranscendentalist on November 7, 2013.

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