CAN YOU BELIEVE IT? It’s November 1st, and that means it is NaNoWriMo time again! And this year I am EXTREMELY EXCITED to tell you that I am the OFFICIAL AGONY AUNT of NaNoWriMo.

I have already anticipated some questions.

1. What is NaNoWriMo?

NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month. Thousands of people-hundreds of thousands-will write first drafts of books this month from scratch. Anyone can join. Even you. ESPECIALLY YOU.

2. What is an AGONY AUNT?

An AGONY AUNT is an ADVICE COLUMNIST. I am in the problem solving industry. If you have a NaNoWriMo problem, ask here. I will answer a question EVERY DAY during the month of November. You heard me. EVERY STINKING DAY.

I will start now.

deuscain asked you:Does one just walk into NaNoWriMo?


One can walk into NaNoWriMo, or one can run into it, Muppet arms flailing. One can sail into it, or creep into it, or shimmer in like a golden dawn. One might also consider tunneling one’s way in, or bursting down the door, or lowering oneself gently down like a spider cometh gently from the ceiling into the mouth of a sleeping person. One might also whistle one’s way in with a light step, or stomp one’s way in, as if one is wearing concrete clogs. In fact, there is no limit to the ways one might enter NaNoWriMo!

The important thing is that you do, in fact, go in.

Now, I am assuming what you are actually asking me is if you should just go in without preparation of some sort. That’s what I’m taking from the question. And my answer is, YES. You just do it. Writing is not like going into space or drilling a hole to the center of the earth to find a colony of earth core monsters … you don’t need to make plans or get special equipment. In fact, “preparing” to write is just a form of procrastination. I can’t tell you the number of people who tell me they are “about” to write something. Nothing is stopping you. There is no right time. There is no magic machine or special pen. You don’t have to wait for the stars to be in alignment. You just start.

Which is precisely why NaNoWriMo is so great. it’s gets right to the heart of things. It says, “Sit down and do it.” That is all it takes to write. You don’t even have to do the SITTING part if you don’t want. Many great writers have written standing up

Go forth and do this thing. Have no fear. Just walk right in.

Auntie MJ