[liff] What I Learned At NaNoWriMo 2011

2720.The culture that’s sprung up around NaNoWriMo is your atypical typical Intertube social culture, with history and customs that’re all its own.

Herewith a brief list of customs and cute terms I learned whilst submerged in NaNo culture, in no particular order:

  • NaNoWriMo: National Novel Writing Month, aber naturlich. Obvious from the brouhaha, but I thought that putting this up first would set the table for what follows.
  • NaNo: What WriMos (which see) call it for short.
  • WriMo: What members of the NaNo tribe call themselves and each other. I‘m a WriMo, you’re a WriMo, he’s a WriMo, she’s a WriMo … wouldn’t you like to be a WriMo too?
  • NaNoMail: Every social website has their own internal messaging system. Did you think this one would be any different?
  • Regions: Activities in NaNo are organized geographically, as are the forums on the site. Portland has one, Salem has one, Vancouver has one.
  • Pep Talk: Regional coordinators and national team members send out emails of encouragement to WriMos each week. These are Pep Talks, and any of them can be useful. They’re not so long that I’d kill you taking a few minutes to read each one. One of them helped me a ton and generated an interesting sub plot.
  • Winning: There’s just one condition for ‘winning’ NaNo: produce a novel, a prose work of 50,000 words or more, by midnight, November 30th. Since you’re participating in NaNo to test your mettle or just to have fun, the biggest prize is bragging rights. Other prizes include knowing you can do this thing, increased creativity, a slightly limbered imagination, the desire to go create something else. You get this even if you don’t cross the 50K Rubicon, but completing the victory conditions is just … so … satisfying.
  • WriteIn: When a group of WriMos get together to work on their novels in a social setting. Since everyone is together for the social, many times, not a lot of actual writing gets done, but a lot of bonding does. In the end, it’s all good.
  • TGIO: Thank God, It’s Over … the sigh of relief when NaNo is finally over, whether or not you get that novel done. TGIO parties ensue.
  • OLL: The Office of Letters and Light, the group of crazies who push this stuff, year-after-year. Big on teachin’ y’alls how to create, n’stuff.
  • WordWar: When two regions go up against each other in order to produce even moar verbiage. Works great as a group motivator. I don’t know how PDX stacked up against others, but the graph I just saw indicates that PDX area WriMos produced, in the aggregate, nearly thirty million words. If I had a nickle for every one of those words I’d have … well, I’d have a whole lot of money!
That’s just a smattering of it. I enjoyed the hell out of it. It’s my serious intention to try to write a short story now, to see if I can sell it.
Yeah, I loves me some writins.
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