NaNoWriMo — or, here we go again.

Jane Austen didn't need no stinkin' NaNo.
Jane Austen didn't need no stinkin' NaNo.

Remember my stance against NaNoWriMo? Oh come on, sure you do. To refresh your memories, here’s the link:

Writing a Novel? Don’t do NaNoWriMo.

For the full effect, read the comments. Good stuff there. So my question to you who took part in NaNo last year, how did it go? Especially if you were first-timers, did you think you learned something, produced good work, realized something about this novel writing gig, or all (or none) of the above? Please share your experiences.

I am still strongly against NaNo. I think it reduces an artform to gimmickry. While turning off the internal (or infernal) editor is a must, and speed can be exhilarating, speed for its own sake, and word count for its own sake is counterproductive. I’ve also had the experience of reading NaNo mss, when people bring them to workshops. I’m assuming that people don’t bring unedited first drafts to workshops,  and invariably, NaNo work is just more of a mess.

If you are a newbie and you want to start writing a novel, ditch NaNo. Instead, concentrate on the ABCs — Apply Butt to Chair and write.

Now for a counterpoint (I am all about the counterpoints:): Nicky Drayden, a writer I admire and am fortunate enough to be in a writer’s group with, is a staunch NaNo participant. She says it got her writing. Visit her blog to see what she has to say. And pssst: Nicky! Write something about NaNo so people can see it.

Diary of a Short Woman

(Don’t you love that title?)