• On NaNoWriMo, NaNoReMo, and Mo’

    Posted Posted by David Duhr in Inspiration     Comments 13 comments

    National Novel Writing MonthShow of hands: Who’s doing NaNoWriMo this year?

    Before I got wise, I thought NaNoWriMo stood for National November Writing Month. Which doesn’t make a ton of sense.

    But as most of you know, it’s really National Novel Writing Month, during which thousands of writers vow to write every day and have a first draft of a novel by November 30, a.k.a. my birthday, what should be a national holiday.

    I won’t be NaNoWriMoing, but I will be NaShoStoWriMoing. My old accountability partner and I are restarting our thing, and my goal is to each week write a first draft of one new short story and revise one old story.

    Roll call: Are you doing NaNoWriMo this year? Have you done it before? Did it work? Tell us about your approach and process in the comments.


    Some writers pair NaNoWriMo with NaNoReMo, National Novel Reading Month, during which you set aside whatever else you’re reading and instead tackle only novels.

    Bury yourself in writing and reading novels! What better activity while you’re sitting there waiting for your Movember ‘stache to grow.

    But I’ll read some novels, for sure. Right now I’m halfway through What Ends, the 2014 debut from a former classmate, Andrew Ladd. Next on the list is former classmate, former WBN consultant, and current friend Kirstin Chen’s Bury What We Cannot Take, then Tawni O’Dell’s Coal Run. After that I’m attacking Andrew Martin’s Early Work, which I’m reading for an upcoming discussion on Yak Babies.

    Your turn: What novels will you be reading for NaNoReMo?


    By the way. My short stories are about a group of factory workers. It’s for what I imagine as a linked collection. And of those novels above, Coal Run is the only one that comes even close to being topically similar.

    Which reminds me of how some writers will, in their reading, intentionally stay away from the kinds of work they’re currently writing.

    For example, if they’re writing fiction, they read only nonfiction (or fiction that has nothing in common with their own). If they’re writing nonfiction, they read only fiction. I think the idea is to not have your writing be affected at all by whatever you’re reading.

    Your turn: Do you avoid reading the kind of work you’re currently writing? If so, in what ways does it help?

    And if not, do you ever find that whatever you’re reading will somehow seep into whatever you’re writing?


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    Barbara Mealer

    I will read what I’m writing, but it is usually in a totally different style from my writing, keeping it from seeping into my work. I’m unable to do the Nanoremo as I’m overbooked for the month in what I want to accomplish. My only novel for the month is 9 mm, the second book in the Falau Files by Mike Gomes. If I finish that before the end of the month, I have two others in the wings to get through. I am doing nanowrimo and so far am averaging 2K words a day or more and will be… Read more »

    David Duhr

    What’s this snowflake thing? Also, it’s not like you have to do a specific NaNoReMo; you read more novels just naturally than most people I know. It’s like every month for you is novel-reading month!

    Barbara Mealer

    Randy Ingermanson is the Snowflake guy. He developed it as a method for writing a book. I have loved reading from the time I was able for read my first book (around age 4). My e-reader goes with me everywhere so I don’t have to pack books. I guess my reading is what made me want to write when I run across books which are mediocre at best. If you like thrillers, James Patterson’s Invisible is totally awesome. All I’ll say is read it as anything else will be spoilers.


    I am writing at least a novel’s worth of short stories, this month. If I get lucky, I’ll find time to write a novel, too. And finish one I started a couple of years back.

    As for whether I read similar to what I write, YES. But, I write for all ages, so it is important for me to be in the proper frame of mind for the age group I’m writing for. There are many different rules to be aware of, depending on the ages and genres.

    David Duhr

    Good luck, Renee! That would be a fruitful month. Finishing two novels and a story collection? That’s an entire career for lots of writers. How’s it going so far? What’s your approach?


    Me, me! Yes, I’m doing it. But I think NaNoWriMo needs a rap and a dance. I did have trouble getting started after a couple weeks hiatus here, but my book is about a girl and a dog so I got going by watching the Getting a Puppy for Christmas Compilation on YouTube, and that opened the flood gates, so I’m diving in right now. PS… Reading something in the same vein used to seep into my writing but not now, and I think it’s because my story has sort of settled into itself and is not so suggestible as… Read more »

    David Duhr

    OK, so, I’m happy you’re doing NaNo, and I wish you luck and am rooting for you and all that, but I definitely think you need to set aside time to write a NaNo rap and choreograph a dance. What a smash hit that could be! Think of all the lonely writers out there looking for a boost.

    Let us know what you come up with!


    Okay, you asked for it. Well, except the choreography, I don’t know, just shake your bootie and let your fingers fly like in a typing motion, but here’s the song:

    [song redacted for publication elsewhere]


    Thanks, David. I’m glad you enjoyed it. Actually, I think it can be just a spoken rap, as long as you do it with pizzaz. I was thinking of a chorus of kids in the background clapping hands together like a playground chant, NaNo (beat) WriMO (beat) NaNO..etc. Seriously, I have a fun loving young cousin who likes making silly videos and am thinking of asking her to do it.


    Or We are the Writers of the World….
    I am going to do something with this, mainly I would hope NaNoWriMo org. would want to use it for themselves somehow… I actually did not know they were an organization, I thought it was just a month like April 9 is bubblewrap day… Anyhow, do me a favor, please, and remove the song/rap from your blog. Don’t want it copied, before I see if NaNo might want it. You never know. ..Thanks Again. Keep up your great blog You are inspiring me.

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