Chicago Writes: NaNoWriMo 2016, A Guide & A Gentle Nudge

This is the first of two posts on NaNoWriMo. For an alternate perspective, see No NaNo? No Problem.


DO NANOWRIMO! Okay…maybe I lied when I said it would be a gentle nudge.

So, I really like NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) because I’ve done it ever since I decided to start writing with a goal of publishing.

According to

National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to creative writing. On November 1, participants begin working towards the goal of writing a 50,000-word novel by 11:59 p.m. on November 30. Valuing enthusiasm, determination, and a deadline, NaNoWriMo is for anyone who has ever thought fleetingly about writing a novel.

NaNoWriMo kind of reminds me of college because you have an excuse to be grouchy and crazy at 3 AM and there are likely other people doing that exact same thing! So you know what that means, 3AM coffee/wine and whine time with friends!

Did you know Storyist, write or die, and Scrivener were created out of NaNo by writers who saw deficiencies in existing writing software? So, even if you haven’t ever done NaNo, you might have benefited from those that have done it!

I also always like to point out that some awesome novels were started and/or written during NaNoWriMo. I actually wrote the bulk of my latest MS during 2015’s NaNo and that’s the novel I got an agent with (wheee!)

Okay, so here are some of the fun things you get by signing up (FOR FREE) at

Cool stats and graphs telling you how awesome (or, in my case, how lazy) you are:


Awesome Forums where you can connect with other authors. There are so many options to base the forums on (genre, hobbies, progress in your WIP, where you live, who you read):

NaNo2.png gives you tools to motivate yourself but none of it is mandatory. It’s just available for your use if you find it helps you on your writing journey. There are fun things like buddies (friends who are also participating), badges, and a blog with advice:

NaNo3.pngAnd there are some Regional specific events:


Something I want to say is if you take part in NaNo and don’t hit the 50,000 word mark, then it’s not a failure. Writing at all is an accomplishment, and it’s great to be able to just sit down and put words to paper. That’s the spirit of NaNoWriMo. What it offers that’s cool is a community and tools to help motivate you along the way.

Links to help you hook up with Chicago writers taking part in NaNoWriMo:

NaNo’s Chicago Region page

ChiWriMo Facebook Group

AND you can find the ChiYA crew on the site if you’d like to be NaNo buddies!

Kat Cho: katjc589

Ronni Davis Selzer: LilRonGal


This post is brought to you by Kat Cho at

4 thoughts on “Chicago Writes: NaNoWriMo 2016, A Guide & A Gentle Nudge

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s