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No Excuses: First NaNoWriMo, then, NaNoFiMo, Now JaNoWriMo

This entry is part 7 of 20 in the series Nanowrimo

So, you’ve heard of NaNoWriMo (National November Writing Month). We discussed the December NaNoFiMo (National Novel Finishing Month) yesterday. Today we continue with–what else?–JaNoWriMo. The “Ja” is for January. This one is for those folks who have too much to do during the holiday season to successfully challenge themselves to a 50,000 word marathon but still want the “WriMo” experience. However, this challenge has two major differences that make it more doable for just about any novel-writing fool who wants to start the new year off right. First, you can use this challenge to begin a new project; but you can also use it to continue working on a novel that you began in the NaNoWriMo challenge or a any other novel that is still in progess. Second, while the contest expresses a desired 50K wordcount for the monthly total it’s not an absolute requirement as it is in the NaNoWriMo challenge. JaNoWriMo makes room for those writers who want to establish their own goals for the month and the wordcount can be more or less than the stated 50K wordcount. Here are a few Q&As from JaNoWriMo’s FAQ page:

Q. How does this work?

If you’re going for 50k, all you have to is join the forums. For personal goals, either PM tiakall on the forums or send an email to notawebmaster AT gmail DOT com with your forum name and personal goal. This needs to be done by January 5 or within 24 hours of joining the forums, whichever is later, so we can hold you to it. 😉 After that, boot up your favorite word processing program and start writing! Once you’ve hit your personal goal, just email it to notawebmaster AT gmail DOT com for validation!

Q. Okay, so what are the rules?

Writing begins January 1 at midnight, your local time and end on January 31 at midnight.
-The goal is 50,000 words.
-Personal goals lower than (or higher than!) 50k must be submitted by email or PM to tiakall in order to be eligible for validation.
-Yes, you may continue a previous novel, including your NaNo novel.
-No, you may not write one word 50,000 times. No, you may not write 10 words 5,000 times. Stop asking.

Q. Why January?

Chris Baty gives his reasoning for picking November because it’s a dark, dismal month. Well, for those of us in the northern hemisphere, January is even more dark and dismal, but without the added stress of a major American holiday and the end of a semester for the schoolkids. This is also for all the crazy nonstop novelists who just can’t wait for November to roll around again.

For more information check their FAQs.

Now there are no excuses for not working on that novel–any novel. In fact, you could use the January challenge to work on a short story if you wanted. Make plans now to start 2007 off in a white heat rush of words that will create momentum to carry you into the new year.

READ ALL ABOUT IT: No Plot? No Problem!: A Low-Stress, High-Velocity Guide to Writing a Novel in 30 Days

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