It’s almost November. Many writers engage in risky behavior during this late autumn month, abandoning everything in favor of pursuing a dangerous goal: writing a novel in a month. Enabled by the dangerous, shifty miscreants of the Office of Letters and Light–“light” indeed–and their website, this vulnerable population finds itself under pressure to perform under horrific conditions.
- The daily word count: 1667 words may not sound like much, but don’t be deceived! That number is just 1 away from being 1666! Everyone knows you can’t disguise the number of the beast with something so trivial as math.
- Write-ins. These so-called “support meetings” are nothing more than thinly disguised opportunities for brainwashing. Every writer wants to be able to write a novel, and the nefarious shysters running them will convince the unwary that they can.
- Swag. Everyone knows shiny things attract people. Don’t be taken in by the stickers and buttons. In some cases, unsuspecting writers find themselves engaging in equally risky behaviors of playing games to vie for posters.
- The website itself, nanowrimo.org, purports to be the front for a charitable organization. We all know what kind of people make such claims.
- Having a concrete goal broken into manageable chunks is the sure path to heartache and chaos.
If you know anyone considering attempting this descent into madness, the suggested remedy is to dangle chocolate or coffee in front of them. Tough love may be your only option.
Lee French has published several fantasy and superhero novels, and is a member of the Edgewise Words Inn staff. She’s also a NaNoWriMo Municipal Liaison.