I’m a Rebel: The Cheater’s Guide to NaNoWriMo

I’m a Rebel.  And a cheater.

And I intend to win.

So, it has come to my attention that it’s now November and, officially, the start of National Novel Writing Month. Also known as NaNoWriMo. Also known as the bane of my existence.

A Rebel!
A Rebel!

I have no legitimate reason to despise NaNo like I do.  I mean, let’s face it, my project from NaNo last year is going to be published.  Yay!  And…in my three-time history of participating in NaNo, I’ve almost won NaNo three times.  So there’s a three-time almost sense of accomplishment.


I think my issue with NaNo is my embarrassing lack of free time.  I think I have, maybe, forty-five minutes to an hour of writing time a day.  The entire last chapter of Random Contemporary was written during my lunch breaks at work–and usually only the last sixteen minutes of my thirty minute break, because I haven’t figured out how to type and eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich/yogurt/90 calorie brownie with one hand.  I need an assistant.  Or a liquid lunch with a really long straw.

So, I’m going to cheat this year.

As demonstrated in the picture to the left, I’m a rebel.  I reenact Confederate.  I jay walk.  I don’t floss as much as I should.  And this year, I’m going to Rebel my way through NaNoWriMo.

Here’s my plan: Random Contemporary is approximately 31,000 words.  31,872 to be exact.  So, this puts me in a really good position on November 2.  Am I convinced I can write 18,128 words in, what, twenty-eight days to reach 50,000 and–for all intents and purposes–win NaNo?  No.  No, I am not.  But, I also don’t think I can write 50,000 words in twenty-eight days and win NaNo.  So, here we are.

Ideally, my goal is to finish Random Contemporary by the end of the month.  That’s how I’m NaNo challenging myself this year.   Yes, I’m a cheater.  Yes, I’m starting off over halfway to the goal of 50,000 words.  That’s what makes it cheating.  But, if nothing else, I’m at least challenging myself to write as much as I can this month.  I know that I have no time to write.  I accept that; I embrace it.  I’m learning to better use the time I do have and get as much done as possible.  Maybe cheating through NaNo will help me better refine that skill.

And, just to throw in a curve ball, I’ve got a cold.  Half of my free time for the past three days has been spent blowing my nose and sneezing.  Which is super attractive.

I know, I know.  All the NaNo purists are giving me the critical side eye.  Whatever.  The spirit of NaNo is the challenge of NaNo.  Or something like that.  Anyway, I’m sort of NaNo-ing, sort of just standing around, but at least I’m writing and making progress on Random Contemporary.  And that’s what’s important.

So, here’s my recap of NaNo Rebel-ing.  As of November 2:

  • I’ve decided to be a NaNo Rebel and just work on Random Contemporary
  • I’ve written 31,872 words
  • Zero of these words have been written in the month of November.

And jazz hands.

Well, that’s my NaNo plan.  Continuous, plodding along my random contemporary paranormal…whatever it is.  Romance?  Adventure?  I don’t know.  What’s everyone else writing this year?  Anyone tackling a different genre than normal?  Any other rebels out there?  No matter what your plans are, we should all stick together.  Which makes me think of D2: The Mighty Ducks and the inspiring chant, “Ducks fly together!”  So, lets all stick together, fly together, and cheer each other on.  Rebels, purists; all of us.

Motivational jabbing over.  Time to settle down next to a can of diet Mountain Dew and get my writing on.  The month’s a-wasting and Graham Norton comes on BBC America at 10pm.  I think Chris Hemsworth is on tonight and, look, if that doesn’t spell ‘break time’, I don’t know what does.

Edit to add: Yeah, no Chris Hemsworth.  Cher.  I’m on the fence about this.



    1. Rebels all the way!! As of today, I’ve written zero words on my WIP. Sad. I ended up not signing up on the site as an official participant, not only because of my rebellion, but because I forget my password every year and didn’t feel like fussing with it this time. Poor excuse, I know, but I’m sticking with it.

  1. I participated in Camp NaNo during the summer. In that one you could choose your word count goal. I wish they’d do that for November. I like participating, but 50k seems to be just a little out of reach for me. I average about 1000 words a day. Not enough for November, but I try every year anyway!

    1. That sounds more up my alley! 50,000 is always my unattainable goal. I think–maybe–if I’d done NaNo in college, when I had far less on my plate, I’d have breezed through it. If nothing else, though, I think it’s a great springboard. Every word written is more than I had before and that, in itself, is a victory.

      1. I have no idea what that sleep thing is, but I think I heard of it somewhere, and I thought I’d throw it out there to see if you knew what it meant! I did start something new for NaNo. It’s this weird idea that’s been bugging me for almost a year. I haven’t forgotten that I owe you a guest post! I’ve even started it!

      2. I always joke I haven’t had a good night’s sleep since my first kiddo was born! It’s getting better now, slowly. Last Friday I slept from like, 11:30pm until 10am. I felt like I was sixteen again! Then I remembered….no. No, sixteen was a reeeeeeallly long time ago. I’ll be ready for your guest post whenever you’re ready! No hurry–especially not with NaNo. I’m still accomplishing much actual writinng, but I’ve spent quite a bit of time staring at the screen. NaNo has that way of scaring my creativity away.

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