One month left, y'all.
NaNoWriMo. That's pronounced nah-no-wry-mo. Not to be confused with the NaNo Rhino:
Wait. Did I hear some of you say that you've never heard of NaNoWriMo? This must be remedied immediately.
National Novel Writing Month is the invention of Chris Baty. In 1998, Chris and 20 of his friends decided to write a novel -- defined as 50,000 words of fiction -- in one month. Six made it. Somewhere between then and now, the event gathered more people, picked November as their official month (50K words in 30 days), got a nice website complete with forums and fancy profile pages, and last year over 119,000 people signed up, with 21,720 reported winners.
Participants last year wrote a total of more than 1,643,343,993 words. That's one-point-six billion and change. NaNoWriMo is an amazing motivating force, the community on the forums is beyond cool, and there are local groups that meet up in person as well.
Want to learn more? Check our the NaNoWriMo website, in particular the What is NaNoWriMo? page, the How NaNoWriMo Works page, and the FAQ page. There's also a NaNoWriMo Press Release for 2009.
I will be talking about this a lot in the near future. If you've done NaNo before, please tell us about it in the comments. If not, please check out the website, and then come back, and if you post any questions you might have, I will do my very best to answer them. I think NaNo is an amazing thing that all aspiring writers should try (if you're an established writer, you might enjoy it, too, but I think it's especially good for those who are trying to find their voice and writing style), and I would encourage all my readers to give it a go.
Questions? Ask away!