I went to the DC NaNoWriMo Kickoff Party this past Sunday. It is one of the regions that I selected, so I decided to venture out, get to know my fellow Writers, and find some helpful tips from the pros. My main region is Northern Virginia, but the kickoff parties are next weekend, which is no good for me because I have the kids, Halloween, and I have to root for my friend who is doing a 5K run on Sunday. Busy life, I know.
It was a little out of the way for me, but I didn’t mind. I used to live in Woodbridge, VA, so I am used to everything taking more than 30 minutes. It was located at Epicurean, which is a nice cafe, very similar to Cosi. I got a glass of the table, red wine (Side story: I was about to give the bartender a $20 when he informed me that it was only $2.75. I asked him two times to repeat himself. $2.75 in DC! I couldn’t believe it!) and sat down right before the Moderator began.
There were people that had been doing it for years, and others, like me, who were only going to start this year. He gave some great tips:
- Turn off the Intenet on your computer
- Keep writing and don’t edit
- Attend the Write-Ins because it will give you the motivation to keep going
- Be positive
- Even it’s just crap, it’s better than having nothing on the screen (or paper)
I found out that NaNoWriMo has great gear that you can buy. I saw people with t-shirts and hoodies, which I really liked. They even have a shirt that you can buy that says you completed the 50,000 words. I also found out that NaNoWriMo doesn’t just stop after November ends. They use the donations they get to build schools, libraries, and teach literacy to people all over the world. Another great tidbit I learned about was National Novel Editing Month (NaNoEdMo), which happens in the Spring. Now I know that I will take the 50,000 words I write this month and then use NaNoEdMo to edit it.
The veterans said that this was a great way to build a writing habit and know that you have it in you to write a novel. Attend your local NaNoWriMo Kickoff Party. You will get great tips that will help start you in the right way.