Wednesday, August 24, 2011

10% chance of horrible success

I've done Nanowrimo several times. Some six or seven, perhaps. All three of the novels I've put out on the Kindle are Nanonovels. I'm pleased with that result, but I know it's not typical. I do good work under time pressure, and so I do well in a month long writing contest. But some challenges are too much. The 3 Day Novel Contest is just about as ridiculous as words can manage: you take Labor Day weekend, and you write a novel. You send it in, it gets judged, winners get prizes. Of course, you pay a registration fee to do this, and you have only 72 hours total. Seventy two. Seven, two. That's it. To get even a short novel (let's say Nano length, 50k words) you need to write on the order of 600 or 700 words an hour. Which is only two or three pages. Every hour though, for the full period. No sleep, no socialization, nothing, at that pace. If you do it in only 36 hours out of that 72, however, you just have to write a mere 1400 words an hour. 5 pages an hour. That's quite a lot. So...I'm not doing it. It's crazy. But if you're up for it, you can still register as late as Friday, and then you can drive yourself mad at leisure in a week more.

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