nanowrimo We may not think it, but National Novel Writing Month’s website is a type of social networking site. Affectionately known as NaNoWriMo, the site allows people to write, format, and edit a book during the month of November. From Nov. 1 until midnight on Nov. 30, users from all over the world flock to the site in order to pen their stories and collaborate with others.

While writing, users can chart their word count, earn badges and participate in the #NaNoWriMo hashtag. The ultimate goal of each writer is to develop a story, of 50,000 words or more, in just 30 days. During the journey, writers can share their struggles or peaks on NaNoWriMo’s website while authoring their books.

While everyone works on individual projects, users are able to connect over their shared experiences.

How can GenTwenty readers participate in NaNoWriMo? If we’re feeling adventurous, we can try to pen the 50,000 words by Nov. 30. However, we’d have to be committed, consistent, and focused in order to meet the daunting deadline.

We should also let go of fear and write furiously. Divide 50,000 words by the number of days left. While we may be inclined to write more on some days than others, it’s best to have a word quota per day. 

NaNoWriMo doesn’t require a polished work at the end of the month. Instead it asks for a first draft of a brand new idea in its raw form. Writers should only worry about sharing the story they have to tell.

But what if we just don’t have the time to commit?

We can still stay involved in the community and cheer on fellow writers. We can do this by joining the discussion on Twitter using the official hashtag #NaNoWriMo. We can also begin assembling ideas for next year so that we’re fully prepared by the time Nov. 2015 comes around. The project happens annually, so we can count on multiple opportunities to write.

Are you participating in NaNoWriMo? We want to know how your story is coming along! Share with us your progress in the comments below.

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